ADRIAN’S PLACE SANTA MONICA

Abuse Prevention Policies

Providers

 

Adrian’s Place Santa Monica (APSM) is committed to creating and maintaining the safest possible environment for all participants in APSM Programs.   Third party entities, their staff and volunteers who utilize our facility are expected to use their best efforts to safeguard the welfare of, and to prevent the physical, sexual or emotional abuse or harassment of every young or vulnerable person with whom they come into contact for any program, activity and event, or within the APSM facility.

 

All allegations of abuse or harassment will be taken seriously and must be handled in accordance with these policy guidelines. This policy will also assist in ensuring that an adult against whom an allegation is made is treated fairly, since an allegation of abuse or harassment does not necessarily mean that abuse or harassment actually occurred. Nonetheless, whenever an allegation is made, the safety and well-being of Protected Persons or Vulnerable Persons is always the first priority.

 

Scope

 

This Policy applies to third party entities, their Staff and Volunteers (“Provider(s)”) who come into contact with Protected Persons for events, programs and activities (collectively ”Program(s)”) sponsored by the Provider at the Adrian’s Place facility located at 1806-1808 Lincoln Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90404 (“Facility”).

 

For the purposes of this policy, “Protected Person(s)” means a youth or other vulnerable person. “Youth” means any person less than 18 years of age and “Vulnerable Person(s)” means anyone who is elderly, physically or mentally disabled or infirm, or suffering from any sort of disability that might render him or her in need of protection or care.

 

I.General Policies

 

  1. To protect Providers and Protected Persons, Providers are not to be alone with a single Protected Person where he or she cannot be observed by others.

  2. In situations where one-on-one interactions are necessary, such as tutoring or therapy, Providers should observe the following policies to manage the risk of abuse or false allegations of abuse:

    • When meeting one-on-one with a Protected Person, always do so in a public place where you are in full view of others.

    • Avoid physical affection that can be misinterpreted. Limit affection to pats on the shoulder, high-fives and handshakes.

    • If meeting in a room or office, leave the door open or move to an area that can be easily observed by others passing by.

    • Document and immediately report any unusual incidents, including disclosures of abuse or maltreatment, behavior problems and how they were handled, injuries or any interactions that might be misinterpreted.

    • Providers must keep a schedule of private tutoring and therapy, which should include times, Protected Persons involved and location of sessions.

  3. Providers will never leave a Protected Person unsupervised.

  4. Restroom supervision: Providers will make sure the restroom is not occupied by suspicious or unknown individuals before allowing Protected Persons to use the facilities. Providers will monitor the restroom area while it is being occupied by Protected Persons. This policy allows privacy for Protected Persons and protection for the Providers (not being alone with a Protected Person). If Providers assist Protected Persons, doors to the facility must remain open. The “rule of three” will be followed (i.e. two Protected Persons and one Provider staff; two Provider staff and one Protected Person) at all times.

  5. Providers will take note of any fever, bumps, bruises, burns and all symptoms or issues that are visible on a Protected Person. Questions or comments will be addressed to the parent or Protected Person in a non-threatening way. If a Protected Person states that the parent or guardian caused an injury, Providers will comply with the Abuse Reporting Procedures in Section V. Providers will document any questionable marks or responses.

  6. Providers will respond to Protected Persons in a respectful and considerate manner and treat all Protected Persons equally, regardless of sex, race, religion, culture, economic level of the family or disability.

  7. The APSM prohibits the access, display, production, possession, or distribution of pornography on the APSM’s property and equipment, or during any APSM associated activity.

  8. Under no circumstances will Providers release Protected Persons in Protected Person Programs to anyone other than the authorized parent, guardian, or other adult authorized by the parent or guardian, unless written authorization by the parent or guardian is on file with the Provider.

  9. Providers are to report to APSM management any observation or suspicion of another Provider or APSM Staff/Volunteer in violation of these policies.

  10. Providers will not abuse Protected Persons in any way, including:

  • Physical Abuse — striking, spanking, shaking, slapping

  • Verbal Abuse — humiliating, degrading, threatening

  • Sexual Abuse — touching or speaking inappropriately

  • Mental Abuse — shaming, withholding kindness, being cruel

  • Neglect — withholding food, water or basic care

  1. We do not tolerate the mistreatment or abuse of one Protected Person by another Protected Person.

  2. Providers shall not withhold as punishment or require as punishment any physical activity, such as running laps and doing push-ups.

  3. Providers will immediately cease all programs at the Facility if they are knowingly under investigation, arrested or convicted of a crime involving Protected Persons.

 

II.Bullying

 

We do not tolerate any behavior that is classified under the definition of bullying, and we will take the necessary steps to eliminate such behavior.

 

Bullying is aggressive behavior that is intentional, is repeated over time, and involves an imbalance of power or strength.  Bullying can take on various forms, including:

 

  1. Physical bullying – When one person engages in physical force against another person, such as by hitting, punching, pushing, kicking, pinching, or restraining another.

  2. Verbal bullying – When someone uses their words to hurt another, such as by belittling or calling another hurtful names.

  3. Nonverbal or relational bullying – When one person manipulates a relationship or desired relationship to harm another person. This includes social exclusion, friendship manipulation or gossip. This type of bullying also includes intimidating another person by using gestures.

  4. Cyberbullying – The intentional and overt act of aggression toward another person by way of any technological tool, such as email, instant messages, text messages, digital pictures or images or website postings (including blogs).  Cyberbullying can involve:

    • Sending mean, vulgar, or threatening messages or images

    • Posting sensitive, private information about another person

    • Pretending to be someone else in order to make that person look bad

    • Intentionally excluding someone from an online group

  5. Hazing – An activity expected of someone joining or participating in a group that humiliates, degrades, abuses or endangers that person regardless of that person’s willingness to participate.

  6. Sexualized bullying – When bullying involves behaviors that are sexual in nature. Examples of sexualized bullying behaviors include sexting, bullying that involves exposure of private body parts, and verbal bullying involving sexualized language or innuendos.

  7. Anyone who sees an act of bullying, and who then encourages it, is engaging in bullying - This policy applies to all Providers. Providers must use positive techniques of guidance, including redirection, positive reinforcement, and encouragement rather than competition, comparison and criticism. Providers will have age-appropriate expectations and set up guidelines and environments that minimize the need for discipline. Physical restraint is used only in predetermined situations (when necessary to protect the Protected Person or other Protected Persons from harm), administered only in a prescribed manner, and must be documented in writing post incident.

 

III.Defining Appropriate and Inappropriate Physical Contact

 

The APSM encourages appropriate physical contact with Protected Persons and prohibits inappropriate displays of physical contact. Any inappropriate physical contact by Providers towards Protected Persons in APSM Programs or the Facility will result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination of use of Facility privileges.

 

  1. Providers will respect the rights of Protected Persons not to be touched or looked at in ways that make them feel uncomfortable, and their right to say no. Other than diapering, Protected Persons are not to be touched on areas of their bodies that would be covered by a bathing suit.

  2. Providers will refrain from intimate displays of affection in the presence of Protected Persons, parents, and staff and volunteers.

  3. The APSM’s policies for appropriate and inappropriate physical interactions  are:

 

Appropriate Physical Interactions

Inappropriate Physical Interactions

  • Side hugs

  • Shoulder-to-shoulder hugs

  • Pats on the shoulder or back

  • Handshakes

  • High-fives and hand slapping

  • Verbal praise

  • Pats on the head when culturally appropriate

  • Touching hands, shoulders, and arms

  • Arms around shoulders

  • Holding hands (with young Protected Persons in escorting situations)

  • Full-frontal hugs

  • Kisses

  • Showing affection in isolated areas

  • Lap sitting

  • Wrestling

  • Piggyback/shoulder rides

  • Tickling

  • Allowing a Protected Persons to cling to an staff’s or volunteer’s leg

  • Any type of massage given by or to a Protected Persons

  • Any form of affection that is unwanted by the Protected Person(s), staff or volunteers

  • Compliments relating to physique or body development

  • Touching bottom, chest, or genital areas

 

IV.Defining Appropriate and Inappropriate Verbal Interactions

 

  1. Providers are prohibited from speaking to Protected Persons in a way that is, or could be construed by any observer as, harsh, coercive, threatening, intimidating, shaming, derogatory, demeaning, harassing or humiliating.

  2. Providers must not initiate sexually-oriented conversations with Protected Persons, parents, staff or volunteers. Providers are not permitted to discuss their own sexual activities, intimate details of one’s personal life in the presence of Protected Persons, parents, volunteers or staff.

  3. The APSM’s policies for appropriate and inappropriate verbal interactions are:

 

Appropriate Verbal Interactions

Inappropriate Verbal Interactions

  • Positive reinforcement

  • Appropriate jokes

  • Encouragement

  • Praise

  • Name-calling

  • Inappropriate jokes

  • Discussing sexual encounters or in any way involving Protected Persons in the personal problems or issues of staff and volunteers

  • Secrets

  • Cursing/profanity

  • Off-color or sexual jokes

  • Shaming

  • Belittling

  • Derogatory remarks

  • Harsh language that may frighten, threaten or humiliate Protected Persons

  • Derogatory remarks about the Protected Person(s) or his/her family

 

 

The APSM annually reviews all Protected Persons abuse prevention policies for relevance, utility and necessity, and modifies or rescinds as appropriate.

 

  1. Protected Person Abuse Reporting Procedures

 

Every Provider has a legal and ethical duty to report any reasonable suspicion of child abuse, molestation, neglect or sexual misconduct to the County Department of Social Services (DSS). Suspicion means that it is understandable for a person to entertain such suspicion, drawing when appropriate on his or her training and experience to suspect abuse. The appropriate Child or Adult protective agency will determine the accuracy of the report.

 

Types of Abuse:

 

  • Physical - An injury or pattern of injuries that happens to a Protected Person that is not accidental. These may include burns, bruises, bites, welts, broken bones, strangulation or even death.

  • Neglect - Neglect occurs when adults responsible for the well-being of a Protected Person fail to provide for or protect the Protected Person. Neglect may include not giving food, clothing or shelter; failing to keep children clean; lack of supervision; and withholding medical care.

  • Emotional - Any chronic and persistent act by an adult that endangers the mental health or emotional development of a Protected Person, including rejection, ignoring, terrorizing, corrupting, constant criticism, making mean remarks, insulting and giving little or no love, guidance or support.  Any attempt by the perpetrator to prevent disclosure of abuse by the Protected Person through intimidation, threats or rewards is considered abuse.

  • Sexual - Sexual abuse is the sexual assault or sexual exploitation of Protected Persons.  Sexual abuse may consist of numerous acts over a long period or a single incident. Sexual abuse includes rape, incest, sodomy, fondling, exposing oneself, oral copulation, and penetration of genital or anal openings as well as forcing children to view or appear in pornography.

 

  1. Actions for Suspected Abuse

 

In the event that there is suspicion of abuse in any form (physical, neglect, emotional, or sexual) with a Protected Person, Provider must take the immediate action as follows:

 

  1. If a Provider member suspects or knows of abuse, they are to immediately report to their supervisor and/or directly to DSS. Suspected abuse can be observed, told or overheard. The Provider should be careful to only listen to the Protected Person and not make him/her feel questioned or interrogated. If you feel that the Protected Person is in immediate danger, call 9-1-1.

  2. The Provider or the Provider’s supervisor (If any) will inform APSM of the concern should this occur in any relation to a Program or the Facility. If necessary, APSM management will help guide the Provider with next steps in reporting to the DSS in the county in which the child lives. For example, while APSM is located in Los Angeles County, it would be necessary to contact Orange County should the Protected Person reside in Orange County.

  3. Provider’s Supervisor/APSM Director will need to have the following information prepared prior to calling the DSS:

    • Protected Person’s name and date of birth

    • Parent’s name(s) (if accessible)

    • Home address and telephone number

    • Parent’s employer(s) (if accessible)

    • Concerns as to whether the Protected Person is in immediate danger.

  4. Provider’s Supervisor and/or APSM management will follow-up with staff involved. If you have not heard from your supervisor within 24 hours about actions that have been taken, contact DSS.

  5. All reports of suspicious or inappropriate behavior with Protected Persons or allegations of abuse will be taken seriously. APSM will fully cooperate with authorities if allegations of abuse are made and investigated.

  6. If any APSM staff member or volunteer, or Provider is named in a suspected case, APSM management will suspend such person’s Facility use rights, employment and/or volunteer responsibilities immediately during the investigation process.

 

Contact Information for Reporting Abuse of Protected Persons

  • If the Protected Person is 18 or over

    • Call 1-833-401-0832 and when prompted enter the 5-digit zip code where the Protected Person lives to be connected to the Adult Protective Services in the appropriate county, 7 days a week, 24 hours a day.

  • If the Protected Person is 17 or younger.

Los Angeles County

(800)-540-4000 – Within CA
(213)-639-4500 – Outside CA
(800)-272-6699 – TDD
Online Reporting:
https://reportChildAbuseLA.org

Orange County

(714)-940-1000
(800)-207-4464

 

Allegations of Abuse and Cooperation with Authorities

All reports of suspicious or inappropriate behavior with Protected Persons or allegations of abuse will be taken seriously. APSM will fully cooperate with authorities if allegations of abuse are made and investigated.

 

Investigation Statement

APSM cooperates fully with authorities to investigate all cases of alleged abuse. Any staff or volunteer shall cooperate to the fullest extent possible in any external investigation by outside authorities or internal investigation conducted by the organization or persons given investigative authority by the organization. Failure to cooperate fully may terminate your right to use the Facility.