What Clearances Must Be Submitted and What is the Process for Doing So?
A. Volunteers must provide the following clearances
- Report of Criminal History from the Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) – It takes about 10-15 minutes. Go to epatch.state.pa.us/Home.jsp
- Child Abuse History Clearance from the Department of Human Services – It takes abbout 20-30 minutes. Go to www.compass.state.pa.us/cwis/public/home
- Fingerprint-based FBI criminal history clearance submitted through the Department of Human Services OR if you have resided in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for the past 10 years can submit a Waiver of Fingerprinting for Volunteers in lieu of the Fingerprint-based FBI Clearance. If you have not lived in PA for the past 10 years, the fingerprinting process takes about 5-10 minutes online and 10-15 minutes at the fingerprinting location: Go to www.identogo.com/locations/pennsylvania. Click on “Digital Fingerprinting.” On the next screen, enter the Service Code, which is: 1KG6ZJ.
B. What is the cost for the clearances?
There is no cost for two of the volunteer clearances (PSP Criminal History and PA DHS Child Abuse).
The FBI criminal history clearance (for volunteers who have not been residents of Pennsylvania for the past 10 years or residents of other states) is required only once upon establishing residency and when first applying for volunteer service. The cost of the FBI criminal history clearance through DHS is approximately $25.00.
C. How long does it take the Commonwealth to process the clearances?
Some of the clearances come back within a few minutes, however, some may take as long as several weeks.
D. Timeline to provide the clearances
All new volunteers who begin their volunteer service on or after August 25, 2015 must comply prior to the volunteer participating in any activity where he or she will provide care, supervision, guidance or control of children, or routine interaction with children. This includes parents who wish to stay at an activity (i.e. Summer Camp) for more than 72 hours.
All current Scouting volunteers (those who began their volunteer service prior to August 25, 2015) must comply by July 1, 2016.
Volunteer clearances (PSP Criminal History and DHS Child Abuse) are valid for 60 months.
PA volunteer clearances may be applied for, at no cost to the volunteer every 57 months.
E. How to Submit Clearances to the Bucktail Council
New volunteers would submit copies of the 3 clearances with their adult application and the registration fee to their unit or the Bucktail Council Service Center. Clearances obtained from other volunteer or employment organizations may be submitted if they are current and meet the guidelines. Once your application is processed, you will be given a Scout Member ID# that you will be able to use, along with your birthdate, to login to our Clearance Management System and manage your clearances for the future.
Current volunteers can manage their clearance profile by uploading copies of their required documents (in pdf format) to our Clearance Management System. This new resource can be used to keep track of your clearances for other youth-serving organizations too. Should you need your clearances for another volunteer organization, simply come to our Clearance Management System and print what you need! No need to look for copies! We will keep them for you in a secure place.
Resources for Additional Information
- Pennsylvania Website on Child Protection: www.keepkidssafe.pa.gov
- Pennsylvania Volunteer FAQ: keepkidssafe.pa.gov/cs/groups/webcontent/documents/document/c_135249.pdf
- Pennsylvania Mandated Reporter FAQ: keepkidssafe.pa.gov/cs/groups/webcontent/documents/document/c_137646.pdf