Youth Protection Practices
PNW Quizzing (also known as "the district") strives to create and maintain a safe environment for all youth who participate. To the best of our ability, PNW Quizzing leadership and other volunteers must safeguard the youth they come into contact with and protect them from abuse.
No 1-on-1 Interactions Involving Youth
PNW Quizzing prohibits any private 1-on-1 interactions between adult-to-youth or youth-to-youth while at district-sponsored quiz meets or other district-sponsored events or while enroute to or from such where the travel is conducted by the district (as in the case of Great West or Internationals).
Travel Conducted by PNW Quizzing
Travel conducted by the district (as in the case of Great West or Internationals) is required to:
- Obtain written permission from all parents or legal guardians of all youth engaged in said travel
- Provide all parents and legal guardians details about the travel including locations, accommodations, itineraries, and leadership contact information
Youth Safety Failure Incidents
Youth safety failure incidents include:
- Emotional or verbal abuse
- The use of fear, humiliation, or verbal assaults to control the behavior of another. Examples include rejecting the person, preventing him or her from developing normal social relationships, and making derogatory statements about his or her race, ability, intellect, tastes, or personal appearance.
- Physical abuse
- Physical contact intended to cause pain, injury, or other physical suffering or harm.
- Failure to provide the food, shelter, or medical care that is necessary to well-being.
- Sexual abuse or harassment
- Engaging in or arranging implicit or explicit sexual acts. Includes non-touching offenses, such as voyeuristic behavior, indecent exposure, or sharing pornographic material. Sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature. Written or spoken sexual epithets or jokes or references to sexual conduct.
Mandatory Incident Reporting
Should anyone (youth, coach, parent, official, volunteer, etc.) become aware of any youth safety failure incidents, they are required to report the incident to either a coach, an official, or the District Coordinator. Any coach or official upon receiving a incident report shall summon the District Coordinator.
The District Coordinator and any others receiving a report shall:
- Listen attentively and stay calm. Acknowledge that it takes courage to report abuse or harassment. Be encouraging, but remain neutral; do not express shock, horror, or disbelief.
- Assure privacy but not confidentiality. Explain that you will have to tell someone about the abuse or harassment to make it stop and ensure that it doesn't happen to others.
- Get the facts, but don't interrogate. Ask questions that establish facts: who, what, when, where, and how. Reassure the young person that he or she did the right thing in telling you. Avoid asking "why" questions, which may be interpreted as questioning the young person's motives. Remember that your responsibility is to report this information to the proper authorities.
- Be nonjudgmental and reassure. Avoid criticizing anything that has happened or anyone who may be involved. It's especially important not to blame or criticize the young person. Emphasize that it was not his or her fault and that it was brave and mature to come to you.
- Document the allegation. Record the conversation, including the date and time, as soon after the report as you can. Try to record the young person's exact words.
Mandatory Incident Handling
Upon documenting the allegation, the District Coordinator shall:
- Immediately take action to:
- Ensure separation between the alleged perpetrator and all youth until incident resolution
- Protect health and well-being, and oversee that medical or psychological care are rendered, if necessary
- Protect the identities and circumstances of all those involved to the best of his or her ability
- At the earliest reasonable time, assemble a commitee of 3 adults, ideally consisting of the District Coordinator and 2 members of the Board, to determine a resolution path
- In all cases, all parents or guardians of any involved youth will be informed of the incident allegation
- In all cases where a majority of the commitee of 3 adults agrees there may have been possible criminal behavior, the District Coordinator shall provide all documentation of the incident to local law enforcement authorities.