Unfortunately, sexual assault is something that happens countless times a day, sometimes in the most unexpected of environments. And while churches, non-profit organizations and Christian schools should ideally be a safe haven from the dangers of sexual assault, it does occur and therefore needs serious attention from those in authority. To be prepared in the event that accusations of such behavior arise, all organizations need to have a sexual assault investigation checklist in place. A fully developed sexual assault investigation checklist will ensure proper action to eliminate the source and give victims justice.
Types of Sexual Assault
Sexual assault refers to any type of sexual contact or behavior that occurs without the explicit consent of the recipient. This unwelcome conduct includes:
- Insinuations or threats – both explicitly or implicitly expressed – that the refusal to surrender to sexual overtures will negatively affect any aspect of their employment or career advancement
- Showing favor to any applicant or employee because they have performed or exhibit willingness to perform sexual favors for someone of a higher position
- Unwelcome sexual language, nicknames, jokes, overtures or suggestions
- Verbal or written abuse of a sexual nature
- Use of sexually demeaning or sexually offensive words to describe an individual or their appearance
- Exhibition of objects, images, posters or caricatures that could be considered sexually suggestive
- Unwanted comments about an individual’s physique, sexual ability or lack of sexual skill
- Questioning the sexual habits of an individual
- Uninvited touching or brushing against the body, suggestive staring, whistling, offensive or lewd remarks or gestures
- Forced sexual acts
Complaint and Investigation of Assault Charges
If any of these behaviors have occurred and have resulted in a complaint, having a sexual assault investigation checklist will help mitigate the problem. If the complainant is uncomfortable sharing their situation or launching the complaint with their leader, they should present the complaint to that leader’s supervisor or someone higher. It is important that all members of the organization know that designated individuals are available to everyone so that they know where to seek help.
When a manager receives a complaint, they must immediately notify a third-party that includes a legally trained professional. It is crucial for management not to conduct their own investigation, however, as legalities require an unbiased party to step in and assess the actions of everyone involved.
Retaliation Prevention for Assault
In our partnership with GuideOne Insurance, we at Beacon Insurance Agency offer our clients exclusive access to resources that will help guide them along in establishing a sexual assault investigation checklist that will benefit their own needs and ensure adherence to protocol. Our GuideOne policies prevent reprisal against individuals who present a complaint or participate in an investigation, and we encourage all of our clients with this policy to clearly communicate their retaliation clause to everyone within the organization or church. Should anyone feel retaliation for complaining about sexual assault or for participating in an investigation, they must report the behavior.
At Beacon Insurance Agency, we dedicate our focus as an insurance provider along the Gulf Coast to serving the needs of churches, Christian schools and non-profit organizations. We know that keeping employees safe from sexual assault is a top priority, so we encourage our clients to formulate a sexual assault investigation checklist and use the resources available to them.
Create a sexual assault investigation checklist that will keep your organization on track! Call Beacon Insurance Agency to learn more about the insurance coverage and safety resources we offer today!