The Pennsylvania General Assembly passed laws in 2014 and 2015 in response to the Sandusky incident. These laws (see Title 23, Section 6344) apply to both paid employees and volunteers of organizations that work with youth – which of course includes DeMolay.
Every 5 years, each volunteer must obtain the following clearances:
- Report of criminal history from the Pennsylvania State Police (no charge)
- Child Abuse History Clearance from the Department of Human Services (no charge)
- Resident / Non-resident certification
- If you have been a continuous resident of Pennsylvania for the last 10 years, you must affirm in writing that you have not been convicted of certain offenses (see attached form).
- If you have lived outside of Pennsylvania at any point in the last 10 years, you must obtain an FBI fingerprint-based background check (around $25). This only applies to a handful of Advisors.
These requirements are in addition to the annual certification that all Advisors go through with DeMolay International.
– State Police Criminal History Clearance https://epatch.state.pa.us/Home.jsp
– Child Abuse Clearance https://www.compass.state.pa.us/cwis/public/home
– FBI fingerprint check https://www.pa.cogentid.com/index.htm
This certification packet walks you through the process for completing all of these requirements. As you obtain the clearances, please work with your Chapter Chairman to send copies of the certification forms to Pennsylvania DeMolay. The PA DeMolay office will record each Advisor’s certification dates, and will send reminders when each Advisor’s 5-year period will be expiring. If you have already gone through these extra steps for another organization, you may submit copies of those certifications to us.
In addition, all volunteers who work with youth in Pennsylvania are considered “Mandatory Reporters”, and are bound by law to report suspected cases of child abuse. Please see the Advisor Sandusky Reqs packet for more details, and instructions on how to make a report.