FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Pioneers and Child Protection
ORLANDO, Fla., February 8, 2019 – In recent years, several Christian organizations have come under scrutiny for their response to reports of child sex abuse by employees. Pioneers is committed to the protection of children from all forms of abuse and neglect and has a zero-tolerance policy toward those who abuse children.
Pioneers has developed a comprehensive child safety policy detailing the protection of children—both those of our employees and those in the communities where we serve. Pioneers requires all employees to comply with this policy, as well as all applicable federal and state laws. All employees agree to the policy and complete child protection training as a condition of their employment with Pioneers. Each Pioneers team is required to complete an annual child safety review and bi-annual training in which they review the policy and code of conduct and sign the child safety agreement.
Every Pioneers employee is a mandatory reporter and is required to report cases of suspected child abuse and neglect. Pioneers will terminate any employee whose behavior toward a child meets our definition of child sexual abuse, which would include inappropriate physical touch, as well as verbal remarks, visual exposure and grooming. Offenders are not offered the option to resign, and there is no option of future service with Pioneers.
Pioneers will also make a report to the appropriate civil authorities (including law enforcement and child protective services in the employee’s home state and in the state of Florida) and will make known the cause of dismissal if a request for information or reference is received. Pioneers does not employ anyone with a prior conviction for or history of child sexual abuse or related offenses at any time during his or her adult life. When necessary, Pioneers involves an external consultant on complex child protection cases to ensure situations are handled properly.
With more than 3,000 international members serving on teams in 100 countries, Pioneers is an evangelical missions movement that partners with local churches to make disciples of Jesus among people groups with little to no access to the gospel.