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Summer Camp Safety

EUGENE, Ore. — In these next couple of weeks, kids across our area will be out of school and looking for something to do.

Summer camps are usually a top option, but how do you know you’re sending your child to a safe camp?

“It’s going to be a very busy summer,” said YMCA Child Development & Summer Camps Director Holly Kriz-Anderson.

As the summer camps gear up, a parent’s mind must always be able to find ease while they’re away.

“Our summer staff–everyone has a background check,” Kriz-Anderson said.

The Public Health Division of the Oregon Health Authority regulates organization camps.

Inspection and licensing is carried out by the county health departments.

But according to the American Camp Association, criminal background checks are not required.

“It probably requires more of on the parents to ask the questions,” said Rees Maxwell with Whole Earth Nature School.

The three camps we spoke with–YMCA Camp Wilani and Whole Earth Nature School–all say they do their own background checks.

“Our insurance requires it,” said Camp Fire Executive Director Barbara Utt.

The YMCA says they also ask for driving records, and they say parents make sure CPR and first aid have been taught to all employees.

“Do you have a safety protocol so that if something should occur that everybody is on board with that,” Maxwell said.

Camp Wilani says you should also know your child’s boundaries and make sure nothing creeps through cracks, so the only thing you and your campers have to worry about is fun.

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