three kids wearing sunglasses
  • Youth Group Homes
  • Youth Residential Treatment Facilities
  • Youth Detention Centers
  • Boys & Girls Group Homes
  • Foster Programs
  • Non-profit Organizations
  • Residential Homes for Mental Disordered, Developmentally Disabled or Physically Handicapped

Protecting your organization

As internet use in youth-serving organizations grows, so too does the risk of being sued by parents whose children were sexually abused by someone they met online at your center. Large jury awards are becoming more common in these cases, especially when abuse could have been prevented. In one recent case, a child molester targeted children at a local youth organization, lured them into meeting him, and sexually abused them. The jury found the youth center responsible for the abuse because it did not have the proper safeguards in place to prevent it.

Five steps

Here are five steps you can take today to protect your organization from liability:

  1. Instruct children, parents, and staff on acceptable and unacceptable internet use.
  2. Post the rules for acceptable usage in a prominent place.
  3. Instruct children to report to a staff member all harassing, threatening, or sexually explicit attention they receive through email or in a chat room.
  4. Supervise children’s use of the internet, especially email and chat rooms.
  5. Monitor and record all visits made to prohibited sites and take appropriate action to ensure children don’t visit these sites again.

What Determines High Group Home Insurance Costs?

A group home insurance plan provides coverage for agencies and non-profit groups that offer services in a group home setting. These settings provide care and services to a variety of individuals including those who suffer from mental disabilities, physical handicaps or require a level of constant care.

The cost of these plans, which are not offered by a large group of insurance companies, can vary but be very costly based on the nature of services provided by the agency. There are several determinants that will affect the price of a group home insurance policy and need to be taken into account when considering this coverage.

Services Provided

The nature of services provided by the group home will influence the cost of coverage. A day care center will not have nearly the same level of risks as a group home for mentally disabled residents. The amount of care and handling needed to protect residents and provide them with the necessary care increases liability for the provider. This liability translates in a real cost to the insurance company and will result in a policy that has a high premium.

Staff Qualifications

The qualifications of the staff will also play in the cost of a group home insurance plan. A group home that hires staff that has a college degree will have a lower cost than a group home that hires staff with a high school diploma. The higher the level of education that the staff has means that the quality of care and the level of awareness regarding the patients or residents needs will be better. This should translate into lower incidents of accidents, deaths, and other hazards that may result in an insurance claim against the group home.

Years in Business

The number of years that a group home has been in operation and the age of the facility are additional factors that will influence the cost of the insurance. An older established group home will have policies and procedures that have been built over time in addressing the special needs of their residents. This should mean that their insurance premiums will be lower than those of a newer group home that has not established itself.

Older Facilities

Older facilities tend to have more hazards that a facility that has been built recently. The newer facility will be in compliance with OSHA and ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) requirements for special needs residents and have been built to those standards. Retrofitting an existing facility that is older is costly for many agencies and the resulting non-compliance means that more work will be done to maintain code standards.

These factors are part of the risk considerations that an insurance company will take into account when deciding to provide insurance protection for a group home.