Report and Recommendations of the Safe Environment and Ministerial Standards Task Force

The Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis is committed to these four overriding goals: the protection of children; the healing of victims/survivors; the restoration of trust of the faithful; and the restoration of trust of our clergy who serve with honor.

The independent Safe Environment and Ministerial Standards Task Force established a roadmap for reaching these goals. Beginning in October 2013, the Task Force conducted a thorough review of the policies, procedures and processes aimed at establishing and maintaining safe environments in ministry.

In April 2014, the Report and Recommendations of Safe Environment and Ministerial Standards Task Force was submitted to the archdiocese. Archbishop John Nienstedt, who at the time served as archbishop for the archdiocese, pledged to implement their recommendations. That implementation is well underway. The Report and Recommendations of Safe Environment and Ministerial Standards Task Force focuses on six areas. Here is an update on progress made:

  • Safe Environment Organizational Structure
    • Hired Tim O’Malley as the Director of Ministerial Standards and Safe Environment – August 2014
    • Hired Michael Campion as Assistant Director of Ministerial Standards and Safe Environment – October 2014
    • Reorganized and coordinated the efforts of the Office for the Protection of Children and Youth, the Promoter of Ministerial Standards Program, the Victim/Survivor Assistance Program and the Investigations Unit – Fall 2014
  • Auditing and Monitoring of the Safe Environment Program
    • On-site, United States’ Conference of Catholic Bishops audit scheduled – Summer/Fall 2015
    • Internal audit procedures in development – ongoing
  • Record Keeping and Electronic Information
    • Designed and implemented initial capabilities of the incident tracking case management systems – Fall 2014
  • Reporting of Suspected Misconduct
    • Partnered with Canvas Health to provide independent, professional and compassionate 24/7 reporting and victim assistance services – November 2014
    • Independent consultant with over 40 years of victim advocacy experience is preparing recommendations for across the board improvements of victim/survivor services – Winter 2015
  • Seminary Candidate Selection and Ongoing Evaluation
    • Completed review of all seminary intake policies and procedures – October 2014
    • Follow-up analysis is underway – Winter 2015
    • Ministerial Standards and Safe Environment training of seminarians scheduled – Spring 2015
  • Enhanced Implementation of the Essential 3 Adult Requirements
    • Rollout of re-training, re-checking of criminal history, and revising/re-signing of the Codes of Conduct – Summer 2015
    • Rollout of updated VIRTUS training 3.0 – Spring 2015
    • Implementation of online capabilities and vendor interface for tracking VIRTUS training and background checks – Summer 2015
    • Meeting with parish and Catholic school leaders to discuss the best way to roll out enhanced Essential 3 requirements for all employees, as well as all volunteers who have regular or unsupervised interaction with minors or vulnerable adults – Spring 2015

Frequently Asked Questions about Safe Environment and Ministerial Standards Task Force

Archdiocese Welcomes Report and Recommendations of Safe Environment and Ministerial Standards Task Force

Statement from the Safe Environment and Ministerial Standards Task Force

Statement from Vicar for Ministerial Standards, Fr. Reginald Whitt, OP