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Volunteer Status Policies

These policies span the volunteer lifecycle from assessment to resignation. You will also find the answer to frequently asked questions about our Criminal Background Check process, including volunteer restrictions or disqualification, here.

Performance Assessment

Volunteers will be provided with the opportunity to review their performance and obtain feedback from their volunteer or staff supervisor. Responsibilities, duties, and expectations of each volunteer position will be established and outlined in the position description

The purpose of a performance review is to acknowledge the hard work and dedication of GSNEO volunteers, to provide coaching, evaluate changes that need to be made, help assess whether a position is a good fit or make any other recommendations to help the volunteer be successful in her/his role. Generally, performance reviews are conducted at the end of a volunteer's position term, although a performance review and coaching may occur throughout the year. 

In the case of unsatisfactory performance, the volunteer will be asked to make changes or to fulfill specified requirements to correct the unfavorable behavior within a specified timeframe. Failure to improve performance will subject a volunteer to reassignment or release.

Resignation

A volunteer may resign from her/his position at any time. Here are the steps: 

  1. Prior to giving notice, we encourage her/him to discuss the reason(s) with the assigned staff or volunteer supervisor. 
  2. At least two weeks prior to leaving, the volunteer should submit a written resignation outlining the specific position(s) from which she/he is resigning and the reason(s) for leaving. 
  3. When applicable, we ask that the volunteer assist in identifying a replacement and communicate her/his decision with members of the service unit team.

The volunteer may be required to balance Girl Scout funds/accounts and return property and records. The volunteer and their supervisor will be responsible for completing all necessary steps to ensure a smooth transition.

Redirection/Release

A volunteer may be released from a volunteer position or redirected to a new position because of these reasons, among others: 

  • Restructuring of volunteer positions; 
  • Abuse, neglect, mishandling, or mistreatment of girls or adults;
  • Conviction of a felony;
  • Misappropriation of funds or outstanding debt;
  • Acts of discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability unrelated to the individual’s ability to perform designated volunteer duties, religion, economic status, or any other basis protected by law; 
  • Failure to maintain strict confidentiality when handling sensitive or privileged information;
  • Membership in an organization whose goals are not compatible with those of GSUSA or GSNEO;
  • Ineffectiveness or inability to perform the assignment;
  • Unsatisfactory completion of objectives or failure to take corrective action;
  • Excessive absence or tardiness from volunteer assignment;
  • Violation of GSUSA policies or GSNEO policies;
  • Misalignment with Council business processes, procedures, or program;
  • Actions not consistent with the Girl Scout Mission, Girl Scout Promise, and/or Girl Scout Law.

Volunteers who are released or redirected from their volunteer position are still considered members of GSUSA and GSNEO unless it is determined that they are not able to meet the membership requirements related to accepting the principles and beliefs of the Girl Scout Movement or by supporting the mission and values of the organization. 

Volunteers who are released or redirected from a volunteer position may or may not be restricted from attending and/or participating in Girl Scout activities/events depending on the nature of the situation. 

All volunteers who are redirected or released will be notified in writing. GSNEO will maintain confidentiality, however, it may be necessary to notify other members impacted by the change in volunteer status. 

A redirected or released volunteer who wishes to dispute GSNEO’s decision must submit their dispute in writing within 30 days to the Director of Volunteer Support and Services or designee.

Volunteer Disqualification, Restrictions, and Suspensions

The safety of our members, both girls and adults, is a crucial consideration in the appointment of a volunteer. To become an approved volunteer (with or without restrictions), you must:

  • Be a registered member of GSUSA.
  • Agree to the terms outlined in the volunteer position description.
  • Complete a required CBC conducted by GSNEO and its approved vendor before volunteer appointment and at least EVERY THREE (3) YEARS if you:
    • Work with, drive or supervise girls;
    • Work with Girl Scout money or product (cookie/magazine and snack programs);
    • Work with girl or adult members’ personal information; or
    • Attend an overnight activity.
  • Girls are not to be left in the care of adults who are not registered and approved by GSNEO.
  • Only registered and approved adult volunteers are authorized to handle Girl Scout funds.

Registered sex offenders are not eligible for membership in GSUSA and may not participate in any capacity, including as a volunteer, with Girl Scout programs. Volunteers may not knowingly hold activities where a registered sex offender is present, and registered sex offenders may not knowingly be present where Girl Scout activities are being held. No registered sex offender is permitted to attend Girl Scout meetings, events, or activities whether in-person or in a virtual space. Holding Girl Scout activities in the home/dwelling of a registered sex offender is strictly prohibited. Registered sex offenders are not permitted on Girl Scout properties.

Volunteer Disqualification

A non-exhaustive list of conduct or offenses that may disqualify a person from volunteer participation, as well as the process used to determine are below. 

Automatic Disqualification: 

  • Federal or State felony conviction within the past ten years (Subject to Council review)
  • Federal or State felony offenses against persons, including family members
  • Federal or State felony drug-related offenses
  • Crimes against children, the elderly, the disabled, and other vulnerable populations
  • Sexual offenses
  • Crimes defined as public indecency
  • Crimes involving the use of weapons
  • Arson
  • Any violent crime
  • Outstanding warrant
  • More than 2 offenses involving driving under the influence or equivalent, or any combination of misdemeanor convictions with at least one occurring in the last 10 year
  • Providing false information during the CBC screening process (including driver’s license number, Social Security number, or date of birth regardless of the result of the criminal background check)

Registered sex offenders are not eligible for membership in GSUSA and may not participate in any capacity, including as a volunteer, with Girl Scout programs. Volunteers may not knowingly hold activities where a registered sex offender is present. No registered sex offender is permitted to attend Girl Scout meetings, events, or activities. Holding Girl Scout activities in the home/dwelling of a registered sex offender is strictly prohibited. 

For all other conduct and offenses, the Council will review the applicant’s situation on a case-by-case basis. The decision whether to allow volunteer participation will be within the discretion of the Council.

The factors used to determine disqualification of a person from volunteer participation is as follows: the nature and severity of the criminal conduct, the position for which the person seeks to volunteer, the length of time since the criminal conduct occurred, the circumstances under which the crime was committed, the degree of rehabilitation and the number of crimes committed
by the prospective volunteer.

GSNEO reserves the right to disqualify or restrict the duties of any person who has:

  • been arrested;
  • been convicted of certain crimes;
  • pending charges against them;
  • been placed on probation or deferred adjudication for certain crimes, and/or who has committed acts that are considered contrary to the community standards of justice, honesty, or good morals; 
  • pled guilty or no contest to certain crimes.
     
Volunteer Restrictions

Volunteer approval may be restricted to specific roles for any reason including criminal offenses or misconduct.

Volunteer approval may include a funds handling restriction if there is a record of:

  • Stealing
  • Petty theft
  • Misuse of credit cards
  • Passing bad checks

Volunteers with a funds handling restriction are limited to the roles of Helping Hands, Field Trip Driver, or Field Trip Chaperone at the troop level, may not hold Service Unit Team roles, and may not serve as GSNEO bank account signers.

Volunteer approval may include a driving restriction if there is an offense involving but not limited to:

  • Driving under the influence
  • Reckless operation
  • Loss of license

Volunteers with a driving restriction are not permitted to transport girls and may be restricted from holding volunteer roles.

Volunteer Suspensions

GSNEO reserves the right to re-screen any volunteer on a periodic or episodic basis as needed. If a volunteer is charged with any misconduct or offense, involvement with the Council as a volunteer may be temporarily suspended during disposition or investigation of the occurrence. If a volunteer is arrested or charged with anything that leads to automatic disqualification, their role will be immediately suspended during the legal investigation. It is the responsibility of all
volunteers to report their own policy violations and convictions, and those of fellow volunteers of which they become aware. Additionally, it is the responsibility of all volunteers to report illegal activity which occurs in a Girl Scout setting to both law enforcement and GSNEO by filing an Incident/Accident Report Form within 24 hours.

Appeals Process

Any applicant who wishes to dispute the accuracy of the information provided by the reporting agency must file a written notice with the Council within 30 days of being notified that her or his CBC for volunteer participation has been determined ineligible and/or restricted. The volunteer will have an opportunity to review the criminal history report provided by the reporting agency. It is the applicant’s responsibility to appeal the report received from the reporting agency and to
arrange for any corrections to be sent to GSNEO. 

An applicant may also submit a written appeal to the Council if they feel they should still be considered despite their convictions and wish to further explain the results of their CBC. These appeals will be considered on a case-by-case basis by the Council.

If a person becomes ineligible to volunteer or if they are given restrictions, they may be considered for reinstatement or restriction removal by request to the Director of Volunteer Support and Services or designee. The person making the request may: 

  • Be required to take additional training
  • Be required to pass another CBC
  • Be reconsidered after a waiting period determined by GSNEO
  • Be asked to provide character reference letters
  • Be denied at council discretion

If an ineligible volunteer does not request to be reconsidered, suspensions and restrictions are considered indefinite.