Departments‎ > ‎Child Safety‎ > ‎

What can be learned?

posted Jul 12, 2016, 7:47 AM by del_msimons@metroymcas.org   [ updated Jul 12, 2016, 8:00 AM ]

Camp season is in full bloom and with the thousands of kids in our care, reading about an alleged incident of child sexual assault at the Raleigh Y is unsettling.  Being fully aware that we are only hearing one side to this story and will not know the full details of how this situation was handled, there are many points to highlight and question.  I hope as you read it, certain items jump out to you?

We know that it only takes a minute for children to get themselves into trouble.   My first question is what happened to the supervision?  Why was the mother the person interrupting the alleged assault and not the Y staff?  It is so important to ensure line-of-sight supervision, maintain proper ratios and when possible separate different age groups.

The article is full with disparaging statements from the mother about how the Y staff responded to and insisted on downplaying the incident.  I quote, “They don’t seem (The Y) to have safety of these kids as their top concern at all.  They seem to be concerned about protecting themselves and their organization”.  

While no organization is 100% immune from this type of incident, how we react and address the issue can make all the difference. Our culture of safety must go beyond our words and policies.  It is our actions related to supervision, training and comprehension, accountability and communication that will have the greatest impact on our ability to keep children safe. Please read the article and use it as a teachable moment to reinforce our commitment to child safety.   Click Here for article.

Comments