Human Resources Manual

Policy No.: 8-14 This policy applies to:
Policy Name: Minors on Campus Non-exempt staff
Effective Date: 05/03/2016 Exempt staff
Revised: 05/03/2016 Faculty
 

I. Purpose

Loyola University New Orleans is committed to promoting the safety and well-being of students and others who are entrusted to our care or visit our campus.

The purpose of this Policy is to describe requirements placed on administrators, faculty, staff, students, volunteers and others working with minors in order to promote their protection, to fulfill our obligations as mandated by law, and to provide the best possible experience for any child visiting our campus, or who are participating in University-related programs.

II. Scope and Application

This Policy applies to Minors who participate in activities, or programs, taking place on Loyola University New Orleans campus and in facilities, or under the authority and direction of the University in other locations. This Policy affects all aspects of the University: athletic camps, academic camps, and other similar activities offered to minors.

All University students, faculty, staff, and volunteers are required to adhere and act in accordance with this Policy. Non-University organizations and entities that operate programs or activities involving Minors on campus must be aware of, and comply with, this Policy.

This Policy does not apply to enrolled Loyola students who are Minors, or Minors hired to work. Events such as shadow visits, family weekend, on-campus prospective student recruitment events and other similar, ongoing programs, including the law clinic, as may be designated from time to time by the appropriate Vice President, or Provost, in advance and in writing are exempted from this Policy. Licensed members of the School of Nursing faculty are exempted from this Policy.

Note: Minors subject to any such exceptions shall still be covered by the University’s Mandatory Child Abuse Reporting Policy located in section IX of this Policy.

III. Definitions

Abuse for purposes of this Policy includes serious endangerment of a Minor’s physical or mental health due to injury by act or omission, including acts of sexual abuse. A Minor is abused regardless of whether this activity involves explicit force, whether it involves physical contact, whether it is initiated by the Minor, and whether there is a discernible harmful outcome.

Authorized Adult for purposes of this Policy means an individual, 18 years and older, paid or unpaid, who interacts with, supervises, chaperones, or otherwise oversees minors in Program activities, recreational, and/or residential facilities. This includes, parent, legal guardian, or other adult including, but not limited to employees, who are responsible for escorting or supervising the minor(s) while on campus or while participating in any University sponsored activity.

Campus for purposes of this Policy means all buildings, facilities, and properties that are owned, operated, managed, or controlled by the University.

Child (or Children) for purposes of this Policy means anyone younger than 13 years of age.  Any reference to the term “Minor” in this policy will include anyone defined as a Child (or Children), unless otherwise noted.

Department of Children and Family Services means the Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services. Refer to http://www.dcfs.louisiana.gov/ or call 1-888-524- 3578 for more information.

Direct Contact for purposes of this Policy shall mean a position with the possibility of care, supervision, guidance or control of Minors and/or routine interaction with  Minors.

Employee for purposes of this Policy includes Loyola University faculty, staff, administrators and students, as well as volunteers[j1]  who perform work for or donate services to the University.

Human Resources for purposes of this Policy means the Human Resources Department at Loyola University New Orleans, 6363 St. Charles Avenue, Mercy Hall, Room 102, New Orleans, Louisiana. The phone number is (504) 864-7757.Loyola Police for purposes of this Policy means the Loyola University New Orleans Police at 6363 St. Charles Avenue, Biever Hall, First Floor, New Orleans, Louisiana. The phone number is (504) 865-3434.

Mandatory Reporter for purposes of this Policy is determined by Louisiana Law.   See Section IX(a)(i) of this Policy for more information.

Minor for purposes of this Policy means anyone under 18 years of age. University undergraduate students who are under the age of 18 are treated by this Policy similarly to all other students for purposes of their interactions with Minors and are subject to the requirements that apply to other students.

Neglect for purposes of this Policy means the refusal, or unreasonable failure, of a parent or caretaker to supply the Minor with necessary food, clothing, shelter, care, treatment, or counseling for injury, illness, or condition of the Minor, as a result of which the Minor’s physical, mental, or emotional health and safety is substantially threatened or impaired.

Office of Government & Legal Affairs for purposes of this Policy means the Office of Government & Legal Affairs of Loyola University New Orleans, 6363 St. Charles Avenue, 312 Marquette Hall, New Orleans, Louisiana. The phone number is (504) 865-2657.

One-on-one Contact for purposes of this Policy shall mean personal, unsupervised interaction between any Authorized Adult and a Minor without at least one other Authorized Adult, parent or legal guardian being present.

Policy means this Loyola University New Orleans Minors on Campus Policy.

Program for the purposes of this Policy includes the activities covered by this Policy.

Program Director for purposes of this Policy means the person or persons in charge of an activity or activities on campus that involve Minors. 

Sexual abuse for purposes of this Policy includes engaging in or attempting to engage in a sexual act, or sexual contact with a Minor, causing or attempting to cause a Minor to engage in sexually explicit conduct, or exposing the minor to sexually explicit conduct.

University for purposes of this Policy refers to Loyola University New Orleans.

IV. General Guidelines and Responsibilities

In an effort to maximize the safety of Minors on campus, certain requirements must be met. The following is a list of responsibilities and guidelines that shall be met:

a.       No Child under the age of 13 years may be left unsupervised on campus at any time for any reason. The Loyola Police will be notified if a Child is left unattended on campus.

b.      Resident students may not “babysit” Minors in their rooms, including relatives.

c.       Children must be supervised at all times by an Authorized Adult while on campus, or participating in a University-sponsored off-campus activity.

d.      Minors are permitted in the general use facilities (athletic fields, public spaces, academic buildings, food services area, etc.) with an Authorized Adult, but may be restricted from certain areas of the facilities, or from utilizing certain equipment.

e.       Even when accompanied by an adult, Children not participating in a program on University premises, or a University-sponsored off-campus activity, are prohibited from laboratories and other areas where significant potential safety hazards and liabilities may exist, and where strict safety precautions are required, unless accompanied by the person who supervises that area.

f.        Minors and Authorized Adults not meeting relevant University community conduct standards will be asked to leave the campus. See Behavioral Expectations List, part VII of this Policy.

g.       Minors are not allowed in classrooms while classes are in session, unless permission is granted by the faculty member teaching the class in advance of the start of class. Should a Minor become disruptive, the Authorized Adult and Minor may be asked to leave.

h.      Students, faculty, or staff, who have child care emergencies are advised to stay home or make alternative arrangements rather than trying to bring Minors to campus; faculty and supervisors should exercise leniency in excusing absences resulting from such emergencies. However, this does not exempt students, faculty, or staff members from complying with this Policy.

i.         Seriously sick or infectious Minors should not be brought onto campus.

j.         The University recognizes that there are circumstances where students, faculty or staff may need to bring their Minor children to campus. In these instances, the parent or guardian must provide sufficient supervision at all times. Minor children should not interfere with workplace activities. The University holds parents who bring Minor children onto the campus responsible for their behavior, and expects those parents to be financially responsible for any damages directly caused by the Minor child.

V. Registry Requirements for Programs

All University Programs in which staff, faculty, volunteers, or students, work directly with Minors must register the Program with Human Resources.

Program Directors shall, prior to the beginning of the University's fiscal year for ongoing Programs and activities and at least sixty (60) days prior to the first scheduled date of participation by Minors submit the Working with Minors Registration Form to Human Resources. Human Resources will have sole responsibility of keeping record of activities.

Information provided shall include, at a minimum, contact information for the Program Director; the dates and locations where Minors will be participating; the general nature of the activities and program to be undertaken or offered; the names of all Authorized Adults who will be participating directly with Minors in the program or activity; and the administrative requirements associated with the program or activity, including but not limited to waivers and permission slips to be obtained from the parents/guardians of participating Minors and medical emergency forms.

Program Directors must be able to identify all staff, faculty, volunteers, students and contractors who work directly with Minors; that list must be maintained by one or more Program Directors within each Program, and be available for review by Human Resources during periodic audits.

Any requests for clarification as to whether a particular program, or activity, is subject to this Policy should go to Human Resources. A request for a waiver to this Policy should be sent to the Provost with a copy to Human Resources.

VI. Background Checks

a.       Scope and Application

Human Resources, will be required to conduct criminal background checks on all employees, including but not limited to faculty, staff, students, and volunteers who work with, instruct, or otherwise come into contact with Minors unless the University has conducted a criminal background check on that individual within the past four years, as long as the individual has been continuously employed by Loyola.

These criminal background checks will be conducted by an agency selected and approved by Human Resources. The background checks will be limited to the following: 

1)     Criminal offenses involving minors including, but not limited to, child abuse, assault, kidnapping, trafficking, cruelty, incest and neglect, for which an individual has been convicted, pled guilty to a felony or misdemeanor, or where such charges are currently pending;

2)     Social security number verification;

3)     Address history verification; and

4)     Sex offender registry check

 

b.     Responsibilities of Program Director 

It is the responsibility of the Program Director to ensure that each participating adult has submitted the required criminal background check request form and has subsequently received clearance to participate. Human Resources will maintain a roster of individuals who have been cleared to participate and the dates on which new criminal background checks will be required. The failure of an Authorized Adult to fulfill his or her obligations under this paragraph shall subject him/her to discipline, up to and including termination or removal from the Program. In the case of faculty who are Authorized Adults, such failure will be determined in accordance with the provisions of the Faculty Handbook.

 

c.       When and How Often

Criminal background checks must be completed and evaluated prior to the adult  beginning work with Minors. The Program Director will be required to confirm Human Resources has  conducted criminal background checks on returning adults at least every four (4) years.

 

d.       Findings

If a criminal record history is revealed, Human Resources will refer the application to the Program Director for evaluation. The applicant will have an opportunity to respond to the information contained in the criminal background check.  If the report includes adverse information or unfavorable results, Human Resources, in consultation with the hiring department, will make an individualized assessment, taking into account the following: the nature of the finding; the job for which the Applicant is being considered; the underlying event(s) that occurred; the time elapsed since the finding; the Applicant’s employment history and other evidence of his or her activities in the intervening time since the finding; and other relevant information.

A prior conviction shall not automatically disqualify an applicant from a Program, but shall be considered using the criteria above.

Based on relevant available information, in cases involving staff, students and other non- faculty individuals, Human Resources, in consultation with the Program Director and/or Provost, will determine whether the hire will proceed or the offer will be rescinded.

In cases involving faculty, the Provost and Dean of the respective College, in consultation with the Program Director and Human Resources will determine whether the faculty member will participate in the program, or in cases involving new hires, whether the appointment will proceed or the offer rescinded, in accordance with the provisions of the Faculty Handbook.

The results of background checks conducted under this Policy will be used only for the purposes of this Policy, except that the University reserves the right to take appropriate action with respect to employees who have provided false information material to their employment on employment applications, uncovered as a result of the background check, including and up to termination of employment. The University reserves the right to take appropriate action with respect to faculty who have provided false information material to their employment on employment applications uncovered as a result of the background check, including and up to termination, in accordance with the Faculty Handbook. Copies of criminal background check reports will be retained in Human Resources in a file separate from personnel files.

VII. Behavioral Expectations List

Adults should act in a manner that is consistent with the mission and guiding principles of the University. Adults working in Programs must follow these expectations to avoid behaviors that could cause harm or be misinterpreted:

a.       Do not engage in sexual activity, make sexual comments, tell sexual jokes, share, or assist in any way to provide access to sexually explicit material with Minors.

b.      Avoid being alone with a single Minor. If one-on-one interaction is required, the Adult should meet in open, well illuminated spaces, or rooms, with windows observable by other adults from the Program, must have written parental authorization, and must give notice to the Program Director. In assigning rooms with windows, preference shall be given to those who require one-on-one interaction with a single Minor for a purpose that necessitates a closed door, such as a trumpet lesson.

c.       Avoid meeting with Minors outside of established times for Program activities. Any exceptions require written parental authorization and must include more than one adult from the Program.

d.      Do not invite individual Minors to your home. Any exceptions require authorization by the Program Director and written authorization by a parent/guardian.

e.       Avoid engaging or communicating with Minors through email, text messages, social networking websites, internet chat rooms, or other forms of social media for non-program related communications. Such communications are rarely, if ever, necessary.

f.       Do not touch Minors in a manner that a reasonable person could interpret as inappropriate. Touching should generally only be in the open and in response to the Minor's needs, for a purpose that is consistent with the Program's mission and culture, and/or for a clear educational, developmental, or health related (i.e., treatment of an injury) purpose. Any resistance from the Minor should be respected and the Program Director should be notified immediately.

g.      Do not engage in any abusive conduct of any kind toward, or in the presence of, a Minor, including but not limited to verbal abuse, striking, hitting, punching, poking, spanking, or restraining. If restraint is necessary to protect a Minor, or other Minors, from harm, all incidents must be documented and disclosed to the Program Director and the Minor's parent/guardian. See also Human Resource Policy on Workplace Conduct, 5-2, and Workplace Violence, 5-15 for more information.

h.      Do not use, possess or be under the influence of alcohol, or illegal drugs, while on duty, or when responsible for a Minor's welfare. See also Human Resource Policy on Workplace Conduct, 5-2, for more information. Do not offer to Minors alcohol or other drugs of any kind.

i.        When transporting Minors in a Program, more than one adult from the Program should be present in the vehicle, except when multiple Minors will be in the vehicle at all times through the transportation. Avoid using personal vehicles if possible. See also Risk Management Vehicle Use Policies and Procedures for more information.

j.        Possession of, or use of, any type of weapon or explosive device is prohibited. See also Human Resource Policy on Workplace Violence, 5-15.

VIII. Training

In recognition of the imperative of protecting Minors, the University requires that each adult who will be participating with Minors in a covered Program shall attend mandatory training on behavioral expectations as set forth in section VII of this Policy, on protecting Minors from abusive emotional and physical treatment, and on mandatory reporting of suspected child abuse as set forth in section IX of this Policy.

All third party contractors engaged by the University to provide Programs specifically designed for Minors will also be required to meet recognized standards of appropriate conduct and oversight (e.g., properly train staff, maintain proper staffing ratios, report incidents, and provide written verification that appropriate background checks are conducted).

All new employees must receive this training conducted by Human Resources within sixty (60)    days of hire and before they begin work with Minors; continuing employees receive refresher training conducted by Human Resources every two (2) years. 

Training shall be documented, with the adult signing a statement indicating his/her understanding and receipt of Loyola University New Orleans policies and procedures. Copies of this documentation shall be sent to and kept in Human Resources.

This training shall include:

o      Loyola University policies regarding interactions with Minors (Policy in full)

o      Use of background checks to screen adults working with Minors (see section VI of this Policy)

o      Discussion of behavioral expectations (see section VII of this Policy)

o      Behavioral signs that minor victims may exhibit

o      Mandatory reporting requirements and procedures (see section IX of this Policy)

o      Consequences of conduct violations of this Policy (see section X of this Policy)

o      Other appropriate topics

Failure to meet any of these requirements in training will preclude faculty, staff, students, volunteers or contractors from working with Minors.

IX. Mandatory Child Abuse Reporting Policy

a.      A Duty to Report

All University employees, students, contractors, and volunteers have an obligation to  report immediately any known instances, or suspected instances, of the abuse, molestation, neglect or inappropriate interactions with Minors to the Loyola Police and to the Program Director. This includes information about suspected abuse, neglect, or inadequate care, provided by a parent, guardian, or custodian/caretaker.

Loyola Police can assist in providing contact information for reporting to social service agencies. It is the policy of the University that no person making a good faith report of suspected abuse or neglect will be retaliated against in the terms and conditions of employment or educational program. See Human Resources Non-Retaliation Policy No. 5- 16 for more information.

i.      Louisiana Child Abuse or Neglect Reporting Law

 

Pursuant to Louisiana Children’s Code article 603, the following is a list of Mandatory Reporters that are required under law to report Abuse and/or Neglect:

o   “Health practitioner” is any individual who provides health care services, including a physician, surgeon, physical therapist, dentist, resident, intern, hospital staff member, podiatrist, chiropractor, licensed nurse, nursing aide, dental hygienist, any emergency medical technician, a paramedic, optometrist, medical examiner, or coroner, who diagnoses, examines, or treats a Minor or his family.

o   “Mental health/social service practitioner” is any individual who provides mental health care or social service diagnosis, assessment, counseling, or treatment, including a psychiatrist, psychologist, marriage or family counselor, social worker, member of the clergy, aide, or other individual who provides counseling services to a Minor or his family.

o   “Member of the clergy” is any priest, rabbi, duly ordained clerical deacon or minister, Christian Science practitioner, or other similarly situated functionary of a religious organization, except that he [she] is not required to report a confidential communication, as defined in Code of Evidence Article 511, from a person to a member of the clergy who, in the course of the discipline or practice of that church, denomination, or organization, is authorized or accustomed to hearing confidential communications, and under the discipline or tenets of the church, denomination, or organization has a duty to keep such communications confidential. In that instance, he shall encourage that person to report the allegations to the appropriate authorities in accordance with Article 610.

o   “Teaching or child care provider” is any person who provides or assists in the teaching, training, and supervision of a Minor, including any public or private teacher, teacher's aide, instructional aide, school principal, school staff member, bus driver, coach, professor, technical or vocational instructor, technical or vocational school staff member, college or university administrator, college or university staff member, social worker, probation officer, foster home parent, group home or other child care institutional staff member, personnel of residential home facilities, a licensed or unlicensed day care provider, or any individual who provides such services to a Minor in a voluntary or professional capacity.

o   Police officers or law enforcement officials.

o   “Commercial film and photographic print processor” is any person who develops exposed photographic film into negatives, slides, or prints, or who makes prints from negatives or slides for compensation.

o   Mediators appointed pursuant to Chapter 6 of Title IV.

o   A parenting coordinator appointed pursuant to R.S. 9:358.1 et seq.

o   A court-appointed special advocates (CASA) volunteer under the supervision of a CASA program appointed pursuant to Chapter 4 of Title IV.

o   “Organizational or youth activity provider” is any person who provides organized activities for Minors, including administrators, employees, or volunteers of any day camp, summer camp, youth center, or youth recreation programs or any other organization that provides organized activities for children.

o   School coaches, including but not limited to public technical or vocational school, community college, college, or university coaches and coaches of intramural or interscholastic athletics.

For more information regarding obligations to report under Louisiana child abuse and neglect reporting laws, contact the Department of Children and Family Services.

 

b.      Places to Report

Loyola Police shall be notified initially and immediately. See section III of this Policy for contact information.

Additionally, mandatory reporters under Louisiana law are required to make a report to the Department of Children and Family Services. See section III of this Policy for contact information.

If a Minor is in immediate danger, contact 911.

 

c.    Addressing Reports

A person required to report under this Policy is responsible for notifying their supervisor, University Police, Director of Risk Management, and Human Resources of any threat to Minors they have received, witnessed, or have otherwise been made aware.

Individual contacted will alert the University Threat Assessment Team comprised of Risk Management Director, Campus Police Chief, Human Resources Director, Associate Vice, President of Student Affairs, Vice President of affected area(s), and Counseling and Health Services Director. Legal counsel and/or workplace violence consultants may be involved as deemed necessary by the Threat Assessment Team.

The Threat Assessment Team will evaluate the circumstances and determine whether they believe a credible threat exists and recommend course of action.

The TAT Chair (Director of Risk Management) is responsible for keeping the President’s Cabinet apprised of threats, lawsuits and other issues discussed by the Team.

Questions about one’s obligations can be raised with the Office of Government and Legal Affairs.

 

X. Enforcement of Policy

Sanctions for violations of this Policy will depend on the circumstances and the nature of the violation, but may include the full range of available University sanctions applicable to the individual, pursuant to the University Human Resources manual and/or the Faculty Handbook, including, but not limited to:

a.      revocation of the opportunity to use University facilities and land

b.      suspension

c.      dismissal

d.      termination, and

e.      where appropriate, exclusion from campus.

The University may also take necessary interim actions before determining whether a violation has occurred. The University may terminate relationships or take other appropriate actions against non-University entities that violate this Policy.

 

XI. Policy Implementation

The appropriate University officials shall update or modify this Policy as necessary and administer and oversee the implementation of the Policy in a manner that best achieves its goals.