The Baptist State Convention of North Carolina (BSCNC) has partnered with Guidepost Solutions to assist with the convention’s current review of its policies, procedures and materials related to sexual abuse awareness, prevention and reporting.
The review is being conducted as part of a measure that was unanimously approved by the state convention’s executive committee in November 2021.
The measure directed BSCNC Executive Director-Treasurer Todd Unzicker to conduct the review in consultation with subject matter experts, abuse survivors and a cross section of N.C. Baptists that includes convention officials, board officers, pastors, church leaders and lay people.
“Guidepost Solutions is a recognized leader on issues related to monitoring and compliance,” Unzicker said. “They are frequently called upon to assist institutions like ours to review existing operating procedures and make recommendations for improvement. Their expertise and experience working with faith-based organizations will help ensure that our review is thorough, transparent and trustworthy.
“We want to go above and beyond expectations for this review so that N.C. Baptists can feel confident their state convention cares about these issues, handles them with excellence and is prepared to help our family of churches prevent sexual abuse and care for survivors.”
When the executive committee approved the review last fall, members said they were not aware of any negligence on behalf of the state convention on matters related to sexual abuse. Unzicker and other BSCNC leaders, officials and officers said they viewed the review as a proactive step to demonstrate that the state convention takes sexual abuse seriously.
The review includes all convention ministry areas, as well as Fruitland Baptist Bible College and camps and conference centers that are owned and operated by the convention. Those include Caraway Conference Center and Camp, Fort Caswell Coastal Retreat and Conference Center, and Truett Camp and Conference Center.
Findings of the review, along with any actions or recommendations, will be presented to the board of directors at the regularly scheduled board meeting in September and to messengers attending the 2022 annual meeting in Greensboro this November.