Resource Library

Avoiding Staff Surprises
Published Date: 2007-10-01

This year, the American Camp Association (ACA) has seen a significant increase in requests for information from camp directors about seasonal employment issues. More specifically, staff members and camp managers have asked for clarifications about seasonal employees, employment laws, and resident camps because of misunderstandings about working in a 24/7 environment.

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Federal Public Policy Updates
Published Date: 2015-02-12

THE AMERICAN CAMP ASSOCIATION’S PUBLIC POLICY AGENDA FOR THE 114TH CONGRESS MAKES THE HIGHEST PRIORITY OF TWO SPECIFIC GOALS:

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Emergency Preparedness
Published Date: 2015-02-12

Contributed by Rhonda Mickelson and Susan E. Yoder.

Severe weather used to have a season. Now, severe weather can happen at virtually any time of the year. Camps need to be prepared.

The American Camp Association (ACA) standard OM.8 requires that a camp have site-specific emergency procedures established to appropriately respond to natural disasters typical of the area and other reasonably foreseeable emergencies. The “Contextual Education” for this standard goes on to state:

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Who's In Charge?
Published Date: 2015-02-12

 A reality of today’s society is that many campers have parents who are separated, divorced or otherwise in a relationship that creates uncertainty for the camp regarding who is in charge of the child in camp matters.

At issue is the confidence with which a camp can rely on one parent’s authority to, among other things, enroll (and remove) a child, specify activities, receive notice in the event of emergen­cies, consent to medical care, and permit visitors.

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EMERGING ISSUES AND LAWS

Child protection is a top priority for the American Camp Association (ACA). Therefore, it is a mandatory ACA Accreditation standard for camp staff to complete a voluntary disclosure statement as a step in staff screening. Because of this requirement, ACA receives many questions about voluntary disclosure statements, including: What is it? When should it be completed? What questions should be asked?

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Camper Medical Risks and Trends
Published Date: 2012-05-07

Recent trends indicate camp directors are buying less camper accident and sickness medical insurance and relying more on a parent’s insurance to pay for the occasional camper injury or illness. As a result, camper families are paying more expenses out of their own pockets if they have the means, and more families are seeking reimbursement from the camp when they feel the camp contributed to the injury. Some families are hiring lawyers to help them obtain reimbursement.

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Sports and recreational (SR) activities help to foster important social and team-building skills, while also improving health and quality of life. Unfortunately, participation in SR activity comes with the risk of injury. According to the CDC, an estimated 2.6 million children aged ≤19 years were treated each year in emergency departments (ED) for SR-related injuries during 2001–2009 (1). Around 173,000 (6.5%) of these injuries were diagnosed as suspected Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI).

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Standards Reminders
Published Date: 2012-05-07
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It was not mere imagination when Department of Labor (DOL) inspectors arrived at a camp in the northeast to inspect records concerning the employment of minors. By the time the inspectors left, they had levied fines of $70,000 for multiple child labor violations including dining hall workers under sixteen working more than eight hours a day and beginning work before 7 a.m.

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E.g., 2018-08-21