The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is unveiling abuse prevention training for all leaders of children and youth.
Every adult working with children must complete the 30-minute training by September 22, 2019, and again every three years. The course is available online and deals with both prevention and responding to abuse.
The audiovisual training is available at ProtectingChildren.ChurchofJesusChrist.org and consists of an illustrated slideshow that includes scenarios that require responses.
The Church consulted with child protection groups, therapists and other professionals to create the training. Church policy now requires two adults to be present at all times with children and youth.
The training course directs North American bishops and stake presidents to contact the Church’s abuse helpline about every situation in which a person may have been abused or neglected. The course instructs leaders of children and youth to contact legal authorities as well as the bishops of their congregations.
The training is recorded and associated with the membership numbers of leaders. The requirement applies to every adult who serves in youth Sunday School and seminary classes and in the Primary, Young Women, and Young Men organizations. This includes presidencies, teachers, advisers, camp leaders, pianists, activity day leaders, secretaries and music leaders.
The Church’s Priesthood and Family Department sent a notice Friday to local leaders in the United States and Canada, where the program is being launched in English. It is being translated into other languages and will be implemented around the world.
The training must also be completed by Latter-day Saints serving in bishoprics and stake, district and branch presidencies as well as high councilors and all members of the presidencies of the Primary, Young Women, Young Men, and Sunday School and Elders Quorum in each stake, district, ward, and branch.
Anyone can sign up for a login on the church’s website and see the training. Leaders encouraged parents and those in callings not directly associated with children and youth to take the training.