Monthly Newspaper • DIOCESE OF BRIDGEPORT

Safe Environment Training for Parents

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A Safe Environment Training for parents will be offered by the Diocese of Bridgeport on Thursday January 12th, 2017 at the Catholic Center.

The first session for Elementary School parents (K-8) will be held from 5:00 P.M.-6:00 P.M. The second from 6:15 P.M.-7:15 P.M. is designed for parents of High School students (Grades 9-12). The presentations will be held in Room L14 of the center. Bernadette Griffen, Safe Environment Program Assistant, will serve as facilitator for the program which includes a short video and question and answer session. “This is an opportunity to learn more about the Children’s Safe Environment Training, Think First and Stay Safe and the Netsmartz workshop which takes place in the Catholic Schools throughout Fairfield County,” said Erin Neil, L.C.S.W., Director of the Safe Environment Office and Victim Assistance Coordinator of the Diocese of Bridgeport

Topics for the presentation include child safety, sexual abuse prevention, internet dangers, school yard and cyber bullying, abduction prevention, safe use of technology, and the latest popular Apps that are a high risk to children. Griffen is a professional counselor who conducts Child Abuse Prevention trainings for adults and children across the Diocese of Bridgeport. She has more than four years of clinical experience with adults and children in school settings, substance abuse treatment programs and is currently working with adults who have been convicted of sex crimes and crimes against children in order to promote recovery and reduce recidivism with offenders.

Neil said there are 242 employees and volunteers in Schools, Parishes and Diocesan Organizations who are trained as Local Safe Environment Coordinators and have access to the VIRTUS (a live comprehensive three hour class on Child Sexual Abuse Prevention) database as administrators. In October the Diocese of Bridgeport was found to be in compliance with all audited articles within the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People for the 2015/2016 audit period. The successful audit follows a major effort in 2015 to update diocesan programs, initiative a comprehensive re-certification process and introduce online innovations in the past year.

The Catholic Center is located at 238 Jewett Avenue, Bridgeport. Pre-registration for the training is required to ensure that participants are notified in the event of any changes or cancellations. Please email or call no later than 24-hours prior to the date of the training.

Office: (203) 416-1650
Cell Phone: (475) 988-5366
Email: bgriffen@diobpt.org.

The Diocese of Bridgeport has been found compliant with all audited articles within the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People for the 2015/2016 audit period.