At First Parish in Needham, we participate in the UUA’s “Safe Congregations” program. This program emphasizes safety and right practices between all people in our community, with a significant emphasis on interactions between adults and children or youth.
What this means is…
- All RE classes and youth programs are taught/led by adults who have undergone a CORI check with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and who have signed (each year) the church’s statement of Code of Ethics form;
- No RE class or program will operate without at least two adults present. Senior youth (high school) may serve as one of the two in certain circumstances;
- The church maintains an up-to-date Policies and Procedures to Safeguard Children and Youth and annually reviews procedures for dealing with related issues;
- The Director of Religious Exploration and the Minister serve as trained, mandatory reporters of abuse within the state system;
- First Parish maintains its Welcoming Congregation practices and provides a safe space for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer youth and adults, and;
- Regular review of other safety issues and procedures takes place throughout the church as well, including fire safety and evacuation procedures.