Frequently Asked Questions

The materials available on this website, including the FAQs listed below, are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. All inquiries should be directed to protectminors@rutgers.edu.

Questions

Agreements

Background Checks

Database Inquiries

Forms

Minors in Campus Facilities

Policy Requirements

Training

Program Registration

Answers

Is there specific language that should be included in agreements with third parties that use Rutgers facilities to host programs involving minors?
It is the duty of the individual/department entering into agreements with third parties to make sure that the agreements comport with the requirements of the Protection of Minors Policy. Questions about proposed agreements may be sent to Barbara Turen, Office of the General Counsel. Below is suggested contract language:

Rutgers University has adopted a Protection of Minors Policy to promote the well-being and safety of minors who participate in activities on-campus. The policy includes requirements relating to reporting suspected abuse or neglect of minors, registering programs, completing relevant online training, and undergoing background checks. Non-University organizations that wish to operate programs or activities involving minors at Rutgers must ensure their programs are run consistent with the guidelines of the University's Protection of Minors Policy and the Guide to Working with Minors. Rutgers University reserves the right to audit all programs or activities involving minors on campus for compliance with the above policy requirements. Additional information may be found at http://protectminors.rutgers.edu/externalprograms.php.

BACKGROUND CHECKS
Can we use a County Sheriff's office or the Rutgers Police to run background checks?
No. The two university-approved methods of obtaining background checks are through Rutgers University Human Resources and, under pre-approved circumstances, the NJ State Police.

This does not apply to external agencies hosting minors at Rutgers. All external agencies may follow the instructions outlined at http://protectminors.rutgers.edu/externalprograms.php.

How often are background checks required?
Program Directors must ensure criminal background checks are conducted once every three years. Sex offender registry checks are an annual requirement. Annual Sex Offender Registry Checks will be completed automatically for internal RU programs that select "UHR Coordinated Background Check" in the POM Database. If you utilize the NJ State Police for your background checks, you are responsible for running your own sex offender registry checks annually and updating the results in the database. You may utilize the Free National Sex Offender Registry Check service at https://www.nsopw.gov. If a name match occurs, a full background check must be repeated for that individual.

Who is responsible for the cost of the background checks?
Your program will be responsible for the cost of the background checks initiated in the Protection of Minors Database. If there is a specific person the invoices should be sent to, please be sure to include that information on the top of the Training & Background Checks page of the database.

How do we obtain background checks?
To initiate the background check process, you must log in to the Protection of Minors Database, register your program, and enter any individuals that need to undergo a background check into the system by clicking on “Add Person”. Automatically generated emails will be sent to those individuals with instructions. You will be able to track progress on all assigned tasks through the Database by clicking on "Compliance Reports" from the main menu.

Should I keep a copy of the background check results? 
Results of background checks should not be viewed by Program Directors or anyone involved in the program unless the program is operated by a third party organization. All Rutgers Departments and student organizations that obtain background checks through the NJ State Police should ensure copies are not retained at a Departmental level.

Please fill in the Employer Section of the NJSP Background Check form as follows:

Rutgers University Human Resources
57 US Highway 1
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
Attention: Background Checks

What can be done with the information collected on the background check? 
It can only be used for the reason it was requested, i.e., for the purposes of working with minors at Rutgers University.

What does the background check include?  
The background check includes a criminal history check and checks against the national and state sex offender registries. It does not include a credit check. 

Who has to get background checks? 
The Protection of Minors policy provides that background investigations of Authorized Adults and those who hold Direct Contact Positions or Job Titles who have interaction with minors must be conducted. Anyone that may have one-on-one contact with a minor in your program must also undergo a background check.

Will the University accept background checks that have been conducted for another reason (e.g. school districts)? 
The University will only accept pre-employment checks that were completed by Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey and/or background checks that were completed as part of a State requirement for working with minors. If you have obtained a background check within the last year for another reason and wish to have it considered for credit towards the protection of minors policy, please email the POM Steering Committee at protectminors@rutgers.edu.

What is the cost for a background check?
All background checks should be initiated through the POM Database when registering your program. Background checks initiated through UHR start at approximately $20 per person and are completed online (please note: additional fees may apply for aliases, addresses outside of NJ, or international checks which can add up to $125 to the total fee).

DATABASE INQUIRIES
How do I enroll myself for training?
Self-enrollment is no longer available for the Protection of Minors Training Course unless you are the Program Director who is registering the program. Your Program Director must register the program with the University in the POM Database and enroll you and any other participants that require training in the training course as part of the registration process. They will select "add person" and answer "yes" to the question about the annual training requirement.

Please ensure that only one person is designated to register the program to avoid duplication of efforts and the possibility of double charges associated with background checks requested more than once.

Do I have to go through the database to obtain a background check?
Yes. This process is built into the Program Registration.

How will my employees, service providers, and/or volunteers know what to do after I've entered them into the database through the "add person" tab?
Once you save a person's record, the POM Database will send out automatically generated emails to each individual with instructions on how to complete the assigned tasks. It will also flag auto-reminders for the annual requirements and triennial background check requirements to assist you with managing your programs.

How do I delete a person from my program?
You may delete a person by going into your program, selecting the "manage people" tab, going to the person's record and selecting "archive" in the top right corner of their record.

I received a policy notice of violation. What do I do now?
Log in to the POM Database, select "Compliance Reports" from the main menu, and click on the program you received the violation for. This tab will show you a quick snapshot of the program and will allow you to view who did not complete an assigned task which triggered the violation notice. Blue numbers next to each name indicate the number of days until that person's training or background check expires. Red numbers indicate that the individual is overdue for that requirement.

If there are no people listed in your program, that is the problem. There must be a minimum of two individuals tied to every program in the database.

If you do not plan to operate the program at Rutgers again, you must request to terminate the program from the POM Database to avoid receiving violation notices.

FORMS
How does the Protection of Minors Policy affect consent forms and application forms that are completed by parent and students to enroll in our programs?
Rutgers has created a sample parental consent form for programs involving minors if you do not already have one in place.

Questions about consent and application forms that relate to a Rutgers program involving minors may be sent to Barbara Turen, Office of the General Counsel.

MINORS IN CAMPUS FACILITIES
Should a program that involves only one minor be subject to the requirements of the Protection of Minors policy?
Yes, even programs that involve one (1) minor must comply with the requirements of the Protection of Minors policy. However, minors enrolled or matriculating at Rutgers are exempted from the Policy and paid minors that are employed with the university are also exempt.

POLICY REQUIREMENTS
Are guest lecturers subject to the requirements of this policy?
If the Guest Lecturer is alone with the minors in the classroom, the Guest Lecturer qualifies as an Authorized Adult under our Policy. In the event that an individual with the Program who has completed the training and undergone a background check is present in the room during the Guest Lecturer's presentation and any interactions with the minors thereafter, the Guest Lecturer does not meet the definition of an Authorized Adult.

Does the policy apply to programs, departments or schools that employ minors?
The Protection of Minors policy is focused on protecting all minors and informing the entire university community of their duty to report suspected child abuse and neglect. The policy requires mandatory background checks and training for Authorized Adults and individuals with Direct Contact or Job Titles interacting with minors in certain Rutgers programs. The policy does not require background checks and training for adults interacting with RU-employed minors. Faculty and staff dealing with employed minors should be guided by the policy and are encouraged to review the Guide to Working with Minors - but the background check and training requirements are not mandatory for them. Program Directors should encourage their staff and faculty working with employed minors to review the Protection of Minors policy and to read the university's Guide to Working with Minors. Staff and faculty working with employed minors should also be encouraged to complete the on-line training program.

What do I do if a minor reports an incident involving potential abuse or neglect to me?
Remove the child from immediate harm and report the incident. Please view the Reporting POM Incidents instructional sheet. It outlines what details to report, who should make a report, and what happens after a report is made.

Where can I find the Protection of Minors policy?
Policy 30.1.9, Protection of Minors, may be found in the Rutgers Policy Library or on the POM website.

TRAINING
How do we access the online training module?
Self-enrollment is no longer available for the Protection of Minors Training Course unless you are the Program Director who is registering the program also. Your Program Director must register the program with the University in the POM Database and enroll you and any other participants that require training in the training course as part of the registration process. They will select "add person" and answer "yes" to the question about the annual training requirement.

Please ensure that only one person is designated to register the program to avoid duplication of efforts and the possibility of double charges associated with background checks requested more than once.

Some of the individuals in my program are having difficulties with accessing the training. Who can they contact?

Please be sure the individual is accessing the correct version of the training at https://pom.ipo.rutgers.edu.

If you are still having difficulty, you may contact the help desk at pom@ipo.rutgers.edu.

PROGRAM REGISTRATION
How do I register our program?
Internal Rutgers Departments may visit the Program Directors Page of the Protection of Minors website for instructions.

External Agencies hosting minors in Rutgers facilities may visit the Third Party Organizations Page of the website for instructions.

Does a ono-on-one mentoring scenario qualify as a "program" that needs to be registered with the university?
Yes. One-on-one mentoring scenarios do qualify as a "program" for the purposes of the Protection of Minors policy at Rutgers University. If you will be hosting a minor in a laboratory setting, please be sure to view this one page instructional sheet.