Written By Digital Content Editor Thomas Ahearn
Although Americans have high expectations when it comes to background checks on volunteers, a survey from an insurer of nonprofits, schools, and houses of worship found a sharp contrast between what respondents expected in terms of volunteer screening and the actual screening that volunteers reported experiencing.
The “Risk Radar Report – State of Volunteerism in America” from Church Mutual Insurance Company surveyed more than 1,000 American adults using proprietary and primary research to gather key, forward-looking insights for nonprofits, schools, and houses of worship to help them maximize opportunities and minimize risk.
The survey found more than half of respondents (52 percent) who regularly attended an organization that used volunteers expected those volunteers to undergo criminal background checks. However, only one-in-three (33 percent) volunteers surveyed said they had a criminal background check as part of the screening process.
The survey also found that 41 percent of respondents expected volunteers to undergo a National Sex Offender Public Registry screening but only 16 percent of volunteers underwent such screening while 46 percent expected volunteers to have employment background checks but only 24 percent of volunteers had such checks.
“The reality is that most volunteers do not receive essential background checks. There is a sharp disconnect between the desire for rigorous criminal, employment, and sex offender screening, and the volunteers who are actually being scrutinized in these areas,” Church Mutual President and CEO Rich Poirier said in a news release.
Church Mutual Assistant Vice President of Risk Control Eric Spacek advised organizations to conduct background checks on all volunteers working with children and workers entrusted with access to an organization’s financial information “to ensure those helping them carry out their mission have been thoroughly vetted and prepared.”
Employment Screening Resources (ESR) is a service offering of ClearStar, a leading Human Resources technology company specializing in background, drug, clinical, and occupational health testing. ClearStar offers nonprofit background checks on volunteers to find great people for great causes. For more information, contact ClearStar.
Employment Screening Resources (ESR) – a service offering of ClearStar – does not provide or offer legal services or legal advice of any kind or nature. Any information on this website is for educational purposes only.
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