Pa Child Protective Services Law

Pennsylvania Child Protective Services Law (CPSL)

(March 9.2016) Below is a link to a letter from Bishop Malesic pertaining to the recent State Attorney General’s Report regarding the Diocese of Altoona –Johnstown. In this correspondence you will see Bishop Malesic’s comments regarding his personal commitment to our Diocesan vigilance in protecting young people.
 
This letter will appear in the Thursday, March 10, 2016 edition of the Catholic Accent as well as on our Diocesan website.
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In 2014, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Legislature enacted sweeping changes to the (CPSL), including but not limited to, expansion of mandated reporters, expansion of individuals subject to required clearances from the Pennsylvania State Police, Department of Human Services (formerly Department of Public Welfare) and the FBI, expansion of the frequency of the required clearances and imposition of significant criminal penalties for noncompliance.

As a result, all staff and ALL volunteers who have direct contact with children, including all Eucharistic Ministers, Lectors, Ushers, Adult and Youth Choir, Adult Altar servers, Religious Formation Catechists and aides, Children’s Liturgy, Greeters, Fish Fry workers, picnic volunteers, and anyone having contact with children are required to complete all six of the clearances/trainings listed below.

New as of September 2015 —An additional change mandates that CPSL clearances are only valid for FIVE years and must be obtained again by both employees and volunteers every FIVE years. Thus for incumbent employees, CPSL clearances must be obtained within five years of the most recent clearances, or if clearances are older than five years, within one year of December 31, 2014.
Following is a checklist of the required clearances and trainings with links to the Diocese of Greensburg website. **PLEASE NOTE —- The Greensburg of Diocese webpage has been revised and the link to the CPSL page is posted below.  Be sure to check out their new site! ** All information on how to register and file for the trainings and clearances are listed on their site.  As of July 1, 2015, the fee for both the Pa Criminal History Clearance and the Child Abuse Clearance has been waived for volunteers.

Click here for a link to the Greensburg Diocesan webpage with all required information regarding the CPSL requirements.     CPSL

The required trainings and clearances include:

  • Mandated and Permissive Reporting Training Course  Mandated Reporting
  • Virtus – Protecting God’s Children.  For questions regarding the VIRTUS website, (printing completion certificate) contact them directly at 1-888-847-8870.  Virtus
  • Diocese of Greensburg Code of Pastoral Conduct  Greensburg_Code_of_Pastoral_Conduct
  • Pa State Police Criminal History Report  – Phone # regarding online registration, 1-888-783-7972.   There is NO fee for a volunteer.  The $8 fee listed on the Diocesan website is for employees only.  Criminal History no fee
  • Child Abuse History Clearances – Phone # regarding online registration, 1-877-343-0494.  There is NO fee for a volunteer. The $8 fee listed on the Diocesan website is for employees only. Child Abuse History volunteer no fee
  • FBI Criminal History Report (Fingerprints required) – or -if you have been a Pa resident for the past 10 consecutive years : Volunteer Affidavit Option.  AFFIDAVIT in Lieu of FBI fingerprint inspection

ALSO, effective September 2015, Fingerprinting is now only required ONCE.  Upon renewal of clearances, an affidavit is permitted. Please note the fee for fingerprinting has not been waived.

Please note that the law states that ALL THREE CLEARANCES (Pa Criminal History, Child Abuse and FBI Criminal History (either fingerprinting or affidavit) are needed.

 Failure to comply with CPSL Requirements is subject to significant criminal penalties and civil liabilities. 

Feel free to contact the parish office at 724-864-6364 for further questions, or visit the Greensburg Diocese website, www.dioceseofgreensburg.org.