When I first entered the child safety sphere, I thought I was protecting children from adults. Over and over again we’ve heard the phrase “stranger danger.” 
I thought child safety was all about preventing creepy, weird strangers from gaining access to our precious little ones. I was shocked when I discovered that “93% of children who are victims of sexual abuse know their abuser” and “less than 10% of sexually abused children are abused by a stranger.”1 I was even more shocked when I discovered that a staggering number of children harmed are abused by other children.
Heartbroken, I did more research. Every year that goes by in this child safety field, I am surprised over and over as more cases of child-to-child abuse or harm cross my desk. Gone are the days of only worrying about “stranger danger” and “tricky adults.” Now we need to consider that the neighbor child, a student in their class, or football teammate could also harm our kids.
I don’t say all of this to terrify you...but in the hopes that we might better understand the risk and can together work to prevent those risks. In this issue of PROTECT we are exploring the idea of child-to-child harm, with the hope that we can empower you, as you work with children. We’ve packed this issue full of resources and articles for parents and those who work with young people. Our desire was to answer some of those tough questions in our articles Child to Child Abuse: FAQs and Best Practices For Protecting Your Children From Sexual Abuse. We specifically addressed some of the high-risk concerns for child-to-child harm including A Deeper Dive Into Bullying and In the Comfort of the Home Setting which address small cell groups. We also recommend checking out four organizations which are raising the bar in protection in the article Four Worthy Recipients Awarded the Plan to Protect® Seal of Excellence.
Manual Cover
We know the issue of child-to-child harm is a hard one to even imagine. Don’t feel overwhelmed - you’re not alone. The newest version of the Plan to Protect® manual has a policy template for child-to-child abuse and youth to youth sexual activity.

Click Here to order a copy of the new Plan to Protect® manual today!
We’ve packed this issue of PROTECT with tons of resources to help. Please see link below! 
Tori Bissell
Editor of PROTECT
1. Child Sexual Abuse Statistics. (2015). Rape Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN), https://www.rainn.org/articles/child-sexual-abuse
Did you know you can find past issues of PROTECT on the Plan to Protect Website?
Become a Member Today!
Did you know one of the reasons many people become a member of Plan to Protect is to access unlimited email and phone support and discounts on our services. With every membership you will receive the 2022 version of Plan to Protect® Safeguarding Guide for Children, Youth and Adults Memberships begin at $225 per year!
Check out our Training in September!
September 30, 2022
12:00pm - 1:00pm Eastern Time
Special Interest: Hearing the Voice of the Victim
In recognition of Truth & Reconciliation Day and in honour of residential school survivors of child abuse, Josh Bissell will provide a historical prelude to Canada’s involvement with residential schools, and a tribute to survivors.

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September 13, 2022
12:00pm - 1:00pm Eastern Time

Learn the basics and standard of Plan to Protect. This is a complimentary webinar. Register to participate LIVE with Q&A time, or to receive access to an instant replay.

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September 13, 2022
7:00pm - 8:00pm Eastern Time Elder Abuse Awareness

A one-hour seminar designed to raise the awareness of Elder Abuse. During this community event, we will learn what Elder Abuse is, how to recognize and respond to it. Everyone is welcome! Let's plan to protect!

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September 20, 2022
7:30pm - 9:00pm Eastern Time

We have modified our Plan to Protect® Orientation training for Board Members and Trustees.

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September 22, 2022
8:00pm - 9:30pm Eastern Time

Great for individuals and groups who need to be refreshed in Plan to Protect® policies and procedures.

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September 24, 2022
1:00pm - 3:30pm Eastern Time

Join us for this 2 hour orientation training covering awareness of abuse and so much more!

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Can you help us understand who should be screened and trained under Plan to Protect®?

A: Plan to Protect® believes is it is better to screen than not to screen. The steps of recruiting and screening we recommend include: a six-month waiting period, a position description, an application, an interview, reference checks, Criminal Record Checks, and Training. This chart will be a helpful guide on who to do a Criminal Record Check on.
We have all been in that difficult place where we need someone to fill in for a teacher or assistant that does not show up in the classroom and we need someone to be a substitute teacher. If you have a current list of individuals within your community who have been screened and trained, you will have a pool of personnel available to draw from. On the other hand, someone may never be entrusted to the care of children, but their role may be one where a child or youth would look up to them and consider them an authority figure that they are to obey – these people would still be considered a person in a position of trust and would be someone you should screen.
To ensure that your screening is up to date, and you are fully aware of any convictions on an individual’s record, we suggest you update criminal record checks every three years. For activities like summer camps, we recommend every year!
Important note:  
Minors who apply to work and volunteer should complete the same screening requirements as adult personnel with the following exceptions. In past years, Criminal Record Checks have been provided to all applicants and to third party screening companies even when the individual was underage. With the Youth Criminal Justice Act amendments in 2019, the RCMP has clarified that no record checks will be conducted for anyone under the age of 18 for employment or volunteer purposes, with the exception of government departments. This change has slowly been rolled out across Canada. In the United States it is also difficult to get screening for minors. Therefore, no Criminal Record Check is required for applicants under the age of 18. However, minors should still be required to complete an application, reference checks, interview, and age-appropriate training. Minors should never, ever be left alone but always work with screened adults. 
PURCHASE A PLAN TO PROTECT MEMBERSHIP and receive a bundle of 10 pocket guides of your choice ($60 value).

Membership will also include the newest version of the Plan to Protect manual ($89 value). Memberships begin as low as $225 plus tax. Select the membership package that is right for you.