Another Case of Background Checks and Volunteers


We talk a lot about the importance of background checks and the pre-employment screening process. More and more, we’re seeing news about background checks are impacting volunteer workers.

One such example can currently be found in Ohio.

Ohio State University is mandating that all volunteers and employees working in 4-H programs across the state meet stricter requirements before they are allowed to participate. Specifically, any people working or volunteering in any university program involving minors, including 4-H, are required to get regular background checks and attend an annual child abuse awareness class.

This new policy requires people working or volunteering in such programs to get the background checks every four years. Previously, volunteers and employers only had to pass one background check, which was good for life.

The change in policy was announced in writing recently. One county office has about 300 volunteers and one official says there is no worries that the policy would cause those rates to drop.

All new volunteers will obviously need to undergo the background checks before the beginning of participation. People already in the program will undergo the background check in yearly phases. This will be done so that testers will not have do all the background checks at once.

Around 60 people were part of the first round of checks. The next group will undergo checks in the fall.

Many people will only require a state Bureau of Criminal Investigation check. People who have lived in Ohio for less than five years will be subject to an FBI background check.

Volunteers and employees will be responsible for the costs.