Fingerprinting Requirement for Level 2 Background Check
Background Screening Procedures
The Diocese places two rings of protection around its children, youth, and vulnerable adults - a criminal history background check and safe environment program training. (It is important to note that covered volunteers must complete a Covered Volunteer Application BEFORE they go online to register to be fingerprinted. This application form can be obtained from the parish or school office or on this webpage (see right-hand column). Once completed and accepted by the parish or school, the Volunteer Application Form becomes the authorization document to be fingerprinted and acceptance of the initial cost of the fingerprinting session by the covered volunteer's parish or school.
The first line of defense, then, is a Level 2 Criminal History Background Check of anyone who wishes unsupervised access to children, youth or vulnerable adults. A Level 2 Background Check is a check of an individual's background predicated upon an electronically taken and transmitted set of digital fingerprints matched against prints contained in the FBI's National Criminal Information Center (NCIC) database and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement's (FDLE) Volunteer and Employee Criminal History System (VECHS) database.
A Level 2 criminal history background check gives the diocese access to all arrest records to include: expunged records, sealed records, missing persons records, sexual predator listings, outstanding warrants in all 3,200 counties of the United States and the five U.S. Territories, as well as access to the Interpol criminal records database internationally. Click here to register to be fingerprinted online once permission from the parish or school has been obtained.
The second line of defense is Safe Environment Program (SEP) Training. Both SEP Training and the Level 2 Criminal History Background Check are required before an individual can have the care, responsibility, and or supervision of children and youth or access to vulnerable adults. The order in which these two requirements is not important, i.e. the training can come first or the fingerprinting session can come first.
It is important to note that the following classes of adults must have their backgrounds checked for criminal history:
1. All Employees regardless of age
2. Adult Covered Volunteers who wish or may have unsupervised access to children, youth, or vulnerable adults (A Covered Volunteer is one who may have unsupervised access to children, youth, and or vulnerable adults).
3. Vendors and Contractors who wish or may have unsupervised access to children, youth, or vulnerable adults. (A vulnerable adult is a person 18 years or older whose ability to perform the normal activities of daily living or to provide for his or her own care or protection is impaired due to a mental, emotional, physical, developmental disability dysfunction, brain damage, or the infirmities of aging. This requirement then applies to those who provide pastoral care in the homes of vulnerable adults and to those Eucharistic Ministers who take Communion to the Sick and Shut-in (Eucharistic Ministers to the Homebound).
Not all volunteers need to be screened for criminal history. Non-covered volunteers include those individuals with such job titles as Eucharistic Ministers at Mass (not Eucharistic Ministers to the Sick and Shut-In), Lectors, Cantors, money counters, parish council members, etc. who do not have unsupervised access to children, youth, or vulnerable adults do not have to be screened. However, the pastor does have the authority to screen anyone who he thinks could possibly have unsupervised access to children, youth and or vulnerable adults.
Non-employees under the age of 18 and post high school do not need to be screened for criminal history or Safe Environment Program trained. Why? It is because these non-employees under the age of 18 and post high school are not allowed to have unsupervised access to children, youth, or vulnerable adults. This includes youth ministers, coaches, mentors, scout leaders, babysitters, etc. These individuals who may assist with children, youth or vulnerable adults must be supervised by a volunteer or employee who has completed a Safe Environment Program Workshop and has successfully completed a Level 2 Background Check.
In an effort to protect our children, youth, and vulnerable adults from abuse and neglect, the Bishop has instituted the Diocese of St. Petersburg Policy for the Protection of Children and Vulnerable Adults as revised. This policy applies to Church Personnel who may have the care, responsibility, and or supervision of children or unsupervised access to vulnerable adults. Church Personnel is defined as clergy (priest, deacon, or religious), employee (any lay person who is employed by or engaged in ministry who is given payment for services in any form), covered volunteer (any unpaid person who is engaged or involved in any diocesan institution or parish activity ) or contractor/vendor (This class of person shall be understood for purposes of the policy and in accordance with the VECHS User Agreement to include contractors and vendors who have or may have unsupervised access to children, disabled, or elderly persons for whom the diocese provides care, responsibility, and or supervision).
These Church Personnel must successfully complete a Level 2 Criminal History Background Check. The Diocese of St. Petersburg Policy for the Protection of Children and Vulnerable Adults (as amended) instituted the Minimum Standards of Moral Conduct as promulgated by the Florida Conference of Catholic Bishops. Church Personnel who wish to serve in any position of service must meet these Minimum Standards of Moral Conduct, which are now a prerequisite to service in the Church. Any individual found guilty of one of the 47 crimes contained in the Diocese's Minimum Standard of Moral Conduct cannot be employed by the Diocese or allowed to volunteer in any capacity. However, the Diocese has instituted an appeal process, which is available through the Office of the Tribunal.
The Diocese of St. Petersburg Safe Environment Program Office is responsible for performing all Level 2 Criminal History Background Checks. Level 2 Criminal History Background Checks are based an electronic fingerprint search that is processed through the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE)/FBI Volunteer, Employee Criminal History System (VECHS) fingerprint database.
The Diocese of St. Petersburg does not accept background screening reports from any federal agency, state agency, or private information vendor regardless of the screening organization and regardless of the position that an individual currently holds or may have held in the past - NO EXCEPTIONS. Fingerprints contained in the FBI database can be used only for the purpose intended and are federal-statute specific. This means that the sharing of criminal history reports between entities is not allowed.
In order to begin the background screening process, Church Personnel who wish access to children youth, and or vulnerable adults must first obtain and complete a Covered Volunteer Application Form. This form can be obtained form the parish, school, or early childhood center where they wish to work or volunteer. Secondly, individuals must register online at the following secure website: http://dosp.sofn.net, select a time, date, and location to be printed and then keep the appointment. For those individuals who do not access to a computer, please contact the PrideRock Customer Assistance number at 877-323-8885 to register by phone.
Results of criminal history background checks are provided to the pastor of each diocesan entity. (Note: Every organization within the diocese has a juridic person in charge who is normally the pastor-even for schools and early childhood centers)
A Level 2 Criminal History Background Check costs $50 per session. This fee covers the costs charged by the Volunteer, Employee Criminal History System (VECHS), the state-wide check by Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE), the national check by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and the processing fees charged by the vendor to cover the cost of equipment, processing, and administrative costs. Who pays for the cost of keeping the children and vulnerable adults of the diocese safe?
Initially, the cost of keeping our children, youth, and vulnerable adults safe through screening for criminal history through fingerprinting of those wishing access to these protected groups is covered in various ways. At the point of service, the Diocese pays so that there is no money exchanged.
However, the Diocese then bills the individual parish, school, or contractor/vendor who sent the employee or volunteer to be printed. It is up to the individual parish or school to recover those fees if it is their policy to do so. Some do recover the cost and some don't.
Employee costs are covered by the respective employer. New hire job applicants may or may not pay for these costs depending on the policy of the hiring entity. For volunteers in the parishes, it depends on the policies of the individual parish. Some parishes cover the cost of screening their covered volunteers while others charge the volunteer. A covered volunteer is an individual who may have the care, responsibility, and or supervision of a child, youth, or vulnerable adult regardless of the frequency of the unsupervised contact with children, youth, or vulnerable adults.
For volunteers in the Catholic School system, some schools include the background screening cost in the tuition charged while others charge the volunteers as an additional cost of education like book fees, uniform fees, etc. Again, it depends on the policy of the individual school concerned. For vendors and contractors, the cost of fingerprinting is paid for by the employer of the vendor or contractor at the point of service.
Please direct all questions regarding fingerprinting to the Safe Environment Program Manager of the Diocese of St. Petersburg Safe Environment Office at 727.344.1611 x377 or via email at email@example.com.
|Sacramental Record/Certificate Request||Use this form to request a Baptism, First Communion, Confirmation, or Marriage record or certificate.|
|Statement of Eligibility to be a Godparent or Confirmation Sponsor||Use this form to certify your eligibility to be a Godparent or Confirmation Sponsor|
|Automated Offertory Giving Authorization||Use this form to have automated deductions from a checking or savings account used for Offertory.|
|Volunteer Application||Use this form to apply to volunteer to work with the young, the elderly, or the infirm.|
|Online Volunteer Application||Use this form to apply to volunteer to work with the young, the elderly, or the infirm.|
|Facility Use Policy||Facility Use Policy for those organizations wishing to use a parish facility.|
|Event/Facility Request||Online Event/Facility Request (for Staff and Organizations)|
|Babysitting Form||Babysitting Requirement Form for Organizations utilizing staff babysitters.|
|New Student Registration Form|
Use this form to register new student(s) in the Religious Education Program. This link is just for printing out the form.
|Returning Student Registration Form||Use this form to register returning student(s) in the Religious Education Program. Note: Online registration is available on the Religious Education Page at Ministries->Children & Youth->Religious Education. This link is just for printing out the form.|
|Youth Registration Form||Use this form to register for the Youth of Espiritu Santo (YES) online.|
|Youth Permission Slip||Use this form to get parental permission to attend a youth event sponsored by the Youth of Espiritu Santo (YES)|
|Diocese of St. Petersburg||Diocesan Website|
|Bishop's Blog||Bishop Lynch's Blog - For His Friends|
|Florida Catholic Conference||The nonpartisan public policy voice of the Catholic Bishops of Florida|
|Vatican||Website of The Holy See|
|USCCB||United States Conference of Catholic Bishops|
|The Florida Catholic||Florida Catholic Magazine|
|Saint of the Day||Catholic Saint Information Site|
|New American Bible||Indexed New American Bible at USCCB|
|New Revised Standard Version Bible||Indexed New Revised Standard Version of the Bible|
|Catechist Magazine||Magazine for Catechists|
|Cornerstone||The Cornerstone Catholic Scripture Study|
|Online Catechism||Indexed Catechism provided by St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church|
|Loyola Press||Fun Catholic Resources for parents, teachers, and kids|
|Spirit FM 90.5||Diocesan Radio Station|
|Creighton University||Online Ministry Resource|
|American Catholic||Home of the online editions of St. Anthony Messenger and Catholic Update|
|Mass Times||Find a Catholic Church while on vacation|
|Our Sunday Visitor||Games and lesson reviews from the Call to Faith Religious Education book series|
The Parish of Espiritu Santo and the Diocese of St. Petersburg must ensure that children and youth who worship, study, or participate in activities sponsored by the Parish and Diocese can do so in the safest and most secure setting possible. Parents and caretakers must have confidence in the Parish and Diocese before they will allow their children to become involved in church activities. The Safe Environment Programs of the Diocese of St. Petersburg are designed to instill that confidence and are encouraged by insurance and risk management companies as well.
This same concern applies to our vulnerable adults. A vulnerable adult is an individual who is 18 years or older whose ability to perform the normal activities of daily living are extremely limited or whose ability to provide for his or her own care or protection is impaired due to a mental, emotional, physical, developmental disability dysfunction, brain damage, or the infirmities of aging.
These are links to screencasts that you can play to learn how to use the website to it's full capabilities. Turn your computer sound on and watch as I talk you through it.
When the New Roman Missal is introduced on the first Sunday of Advent this coming November we will be singing new music for our mass parts and acclamations. Here are some samples of the songs from the newly composed "Mass of Saint Ann" to assist you in learning these new mass parts.
|Glory to God|
Glory! Glory to God in the highest. Glory!
|Holy, Holy, Holy|
Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God of Hosts.
Mystery of Faith #1
We Proclaim Your Death, O Lord
We proclaim your Death, O Lord,
Mystery of Faith #2
When We Eat This Bread
When we eat this Bread and drink this Cup,
Mystery of Faith #3
Save us, Savior of the World
Save us, Savior of the world,
|Lamb of God|
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.
Anyone who may have the care, responsibility, and or supervision of a child , youth, or vulnerable adult must attend Safe Environment Program Training.
In accordance with the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People and the Diocese of St. Petersburg Policy for the Protection of Children and Young People, adults (18 years of age or older and post high school) who wish to have unsupervised access to children and youth must receive Safe Environment Program Training and receive a Level 2 Background Screening.
Identify the SEP workshop for Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion/Pastoral Care Providers to the sick homebound that is nearest to your parish.
Communicate these dates and locations to your EMHC to the sick and homebound.
Confirm with them which location they will attend.
Fax or E-mail the complete list for the location your EMHC to the sick will attend to the Safe Environment Program Office at least three (3) days prior to the particular workshop.
What is Human Trafficking?
"Human Trafficking is a modern day form of slavery that consists of the illegal trade of human beings through force, fraud, or coercion for the purposes of commercial sexual exploitation or forced labor." United Nations definition.
Human Trafficking involves thousands of victims annually, some as young as 10 years old. It is our moral obligation to do all in our power to eliminate it. We need to raise awareness among all people to the vast extent of this crime against humanity. It is more prevalent in this country and in Florida...in our very own neighborhoods...than we can imagine.
A report released on Monday, June 27, 2011 by the U.S. State Dept. states that "Despite greater awareness of the problem, human trafficking around the world continues to grow, propelled in part, by Internet communications being exploited to lure men, women and children into sexual slavery and indentured labor."
Join our parish Human Trafficking Awareness Team on the evening of September 22, 2011 in the Parish Center, to learn more about this issue and how you can participate in the efforts of the diocese working with local law enforcement to Prevent, Rescue, and Restore innocent victims. See the Human Trafficking Awareness Event Flyer for more information.
"Human Trafficking is a horrific crime against the basic dignity and rights of the human person. All efforts must be expended to end it...to ensure that, one day soon, trafficking in human persons vanishes from the face of the earth." United State Conference of Catholic Bishops: On Human Trafficking