Due to having to deal with abusive situations in my years as a pastor, I learned a lot by asking questions of friends who deal with such issues in their professions.
I decided to pull together an expert panel who could help churches and ministries navigate through the legal requirements concerning abuse.
- David Stumbo – Greenwood County Solicitor
- Charlotte Ehney – Children’s Advocacy Program Director for Beyond Abuse
- Robin Smith – Director for Greenwood County DSS
In three video sessions, I asked a lot of questions, and they gave some incredible feedback.
We are making these videos free to use in any format that is helpful for your context.
Use the videos to train your staff or volunteers. You have freedom to use in any format, but please do not adjust the format without contacting us.
Session 3: How Do I Report Abuse?
Many questions are raised when deciding whether to report a potential abusive situation. If we knew when to report a situation and how to properly report it, it may provide ease to taking necessary action. In this session, we asked our expert panel to address these questions:
- What is mandated reporting?
- What are the steps for reporting a situation?
- What kind of help do you provide?
- Should a pastor or volunteer investigate a situation themselves before reporting it?
- What should a pastor or volunteer do when they hear about a situation from an outside source?
- How can pastors safely help the individual or family initially before an agency or law enforcement is able to step in?
- What are the consequences for not reporting an abusive or sexual violent situation?
- For the abused individual or family who came to us seeking help and also for the abuser, we would never want to simply drop off a person with an agency or law enforcement without also providing somewhat long-term support and care in an environment where they can receive spiritual healing.
- How can pastors legally and safely provide support for an individual or family in an abusive situation while not getting mixed in the situation or in the way of law enforcement and other agencies?
- How can pastors legally and safely provide support for an abuser while not getting mixed in the situation or in the way of law enforcement and other agencies?