Code of Ethics for Adults & Older Youth Working with Children and Youth

adapted from the Unitarian Universalist Association’s Chrysalis Training Program’s Code of Ethics

Adults and older youth working in leadership roles are in positions of power and authority over youth and children.  Adults and older youth also play a key role in fostering the spiritual development of both individuals and the community. It is, therefore, especially important that those in leadership positions be well qualified to provide the special nurture, care, and support that will enable children and youth to develop a positive sense of self and a spirit of independence and responsibility.

The relationship between children or youth and their leaders must be one of mutual respect if positive potential is to be realized. The areas of growth in one’s self-worth and in the development of a healthy identity as a sexual being are very important parts of childhood and adolescent development. Adults play a key role in assisting children and youth in these areas of growth.

Research indicates that children, youth, adults and communities suffer damaging effects when leaders or those in positions of power and authority become romantically and or sexually involved with young persons in their care.

Therefore: leaders at CUC Events, will refrain from engaging in sexual, seductive, or erotic behaviour with children and youth. Neither shall they engage in sexually explicit conversations (unless it is part of an educational program i.e. OWL), particularly any of a personal nature, sexually harass or engage in behavior with children or youth that constitutes verbal, emotional or physical abuse.

All leaders shall be informed of this code of ethics and asked to agree to it before assuming their role as a volunteer or staff in any program involving children and youth which are sponsored regionally or nationally by the Canadian Unitarian Council.

In the event that this code is violated at a CUC sponsored event, appropriate actions will be taken by the CUC staff (and Board as required) in consultation with the event’s leadership and organizing team.