Healthy Congregation Policies
All persons (including Fellowship members, friends, visitors, guests, youth, and adults) who participate in any Fellowship programs or activities are expected to abide by the Fellowship’s Covenant of Right Relations as well as Fellowship policies regarding unacceptable behavior, alcohol use, physical and sexual abuse, and safety.
Anyone who believes that an individual has violated the Fellowship’s Covenant of Right Relations or the Fellowship’s behavioral policies should contact the Fellowship’s Healthy Congregations Committee or one of the Fellowship’s ministers.
Covenant of Right Relations
We, the members of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Raleigh, hereby covenant to:
- Value what unites us over those things that divide us.
- Practice patience, listen carefully, and speak our truth with compassion.
- Hold ourselves accountable for our actions and commitments, and assume good intentions on the part of others.
- Reflect carefully about the potential results of our words and actions before we express ourselves.
- Respect and support those we have chosen to lead us — our called ministers, and our professional staff.
- When differences arise, speak directly, with kindness and respect, to those with whom we disagree, and not gossip about others.
Alcohol Use Policy
The Fellowship’s Alcohol Use Policy is intended to ensure that the use of alcohol by individuals at UUFR and Fellowship activities complies with state laws regarding the use, distribution, and sale of alcoholic beverages; is sensitive to the needs and concerns of those who struggle with alcoholism; and ensures that alcohol is not consumed in an irresponsible manner.
Alcohol is permitted at Fellowship social events within the Fellowship’s Alcohol Use Policy but is generally discouraged at meetings whether or not on Fellowship property. Appropriate alcohol use at Fellowship events on Fellowship property is limited to beer and wine. Any alcohol at Fellowship events must be served by, served to, and consumed by adults of legal drinking age only. Groups that plan for refreshments at Fellowship events should be considerate of the needs of those who do not use alcohol. Alcohol may not be be left in unsecured locations at the Fellowship.
Unacceptable Conduct Policy
The Fellowship’s Unacceptable Conduct Policy prohibits behavior that is dangerous, disruptive, or disrespectful, including
- actions or speech that interferes with or makes it difficult to proceed with a worship service, meeting, or other Fellowship event;
- behavior that threatens, through words or actions, the safety physical or emotional well‐being of our children, members, friends, visitors and staff; or friend;
- behavior and speech that fails in a significant way to recognize the inherent worth and dignity of each individual including but not limited to racist, sexist or homophobic comments or actions or the malicious spreading of untruths, comments or actions that are likely to damage the reputation of individual groups or the congregations as a whole; and
- a pattern of repeated, egregious violations of the Fellowship’s Covenant of Right Relations or other Fellowship policies.
Safe Congregation Policy
The Fellowship’s Safe Congregation Policy prohibits:
- Physical abuse including the use of corporal punishment by anyone engaged in or involved with UUFR’s ministry, programs, or activities.
- Emotional abuse including bullying, harassment and intimidation by anyone engaged in or involved with UUFR’s ministry, programs or activities .
- Sexualized behavior or abuse with children or youth by persons engaged or involved in UUFR’s ministry, programs, or activities, including touching or interacting with children or youth in any way that is sexually stimulating, emotionally demeaning, intimidating, seductive, exploitative, or physically abusive.
- The use or being under the influence of alcohol, tobacco, or illegal drugs by any person while engaging in UUFR programs and activities for children or youth may not use or be under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs or the provision or permissive use of alcohol, tobacco, illegal drugs, weapons, or other prohibited items to or by children or youth during UUFR programs and activities.
- Discrimination, harassment, or intimidation of children, youth, or adults on the basis of race, ethnicity, religious belief, national origin, ability, gender identity or expression, or sexual/affectional orientation by ministers, staff, YRE teachers, nursery volunteers, youth group advisors, chaperones, lay leaders, and others leading, supervising, or engaging in UUFR programs and activities.
Persons who are considered to pose a potential risk to children or youth will not be allowed to lead or participate in any UUFR program or activity for children or youth, or have any direct unsupervised interaction with children or youth involved in such programs without obtaining the written permission of the Fellowship’s Lead Minister or Board of Directors. This includes any person who (1) has been charged with or convicted of a violent felony or is a registered sex offender; or (2) has been adjudicated to have physically or sexually abused a minor; or (3) has been adjudicated of having neglected a minor; or (4) has been charged with or convicted of a violent or sexual crime. Any person posing such risks must provide prompt notification to the Healthy Congregations Committee or the Lead Minister.
Persons will not be allowed to transport children or youth, other than their own, in connection with UUFR programs and activities if they (1) have been adjudicated to have physically or sexually abused a minor; (2) have been adjudicated of having neglected a minor; (3) have been charged with or convicted of a violent or sexual crime; (4) have been charged with or convicted of DUI or reckless driving within the past five years; or (5) have been charged with or convicted of other behavior which might endanger the safety of children or youth; or (6) is a registered sex offender. Any person posing such risks must provide prompt notification to the Healthy Congregations Committee or the Lead Minister. The Lead Minister may allow for exceptions to restricted participation on a case-by-case basis.
Persons who have been determined by the Healthy Congregation Committee or by the Lead Minister to pose a significant risk of harm to children, youth or adults for documented reasons may be prohibited from attending or participating in UUFR programs and activities.The Lead Minister may allow for exceptions to restricted participation on a case-by-case basis. The participant in question must obtain a written agreement from the Lead Minister identifying conditions or limitations to such participation.