With new year’s resolutions and cold winter weather setting in, we can expect new faces at our doors this time of year. Now is a good time to review and update your membership and visitor screening practices. Screening is an important layer of our youth protection practices to help decrease the risk of abuse. Does your organization check all members, guests, staff and contractors into the facility? Do you always know who is in your building? Do visitors sign-in and wear a name tag identifying them? Does your organization conduct a national sex offender registry check on everyone who enters your facilities? No one should have unauthorized access to youth or be in the building or program areas without acceptable identification and permission. Best practice is to conduct a national sex offender registry check on all members and guests prior to gaining entry to your facility and have established procedures for responding when you find anyone on the list. The practice of membership and visitor screening is also a deterrent to potential predators who are looking for easy access to children. Sex offender registry checks should be repeated on the same schedule as staff criminal background checks. Click HERE for additional child abuse prevention resources located on the Safe-Wise Resource Library.