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United States Olympic Committee Teams Up with the NCYS and NCSI to Provide a Full Service Criminal Background Screening Program

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

STUART, Florida. (February 19, 2007) - The National Council of Youth Sports (NCYS) and the National Center for Safety Initiatives (NCSI) has announced a new agreement with United States Olympic Committee (USOC) for background screening services.

The USOC has recently released it’s policy requiring background searches on the official Games delegation staff in order to ensure a safe team environment at the Olympic, Paralympic, Pan American and Parapan American Games.

To this end, the USOC has declared that the National Center for Safety Initiatives (NCSI) shall conduct all background searches on all official Games delegation staff members. Each National Governing Body (NGB) and Paralympic Sports Organization (PSO) is required to enter into a contract with NCSI so as to allow use of the NCSI website.

NCSI is a full service screening organization that works in accordance with the Recommended Guidelines© established by the National Council of Youth Sports (NCYS). NCSI operates as an independent company, founded and governed in partnership with NCYS.

"In order to ensure the safety and wellbeing of the athletes and delegation staff at the Olympic, Paralympic, Pan American and Parapan American Games, it is critical for the U.S. Olympic Committee to partner with organizations such as the NCYS," said Steve Roush, the USOC's Chief of Sport Performance. "The USOC is dedicated to and responsible for a system in which the coaches, athletes and staff are of the highest integrity and meet our safety requirements. We are confident that the NCSI can help us meet those standards."

In addition to conducting the background search, NCSI is responsible for interpreting the results, issuing a "red light/green light determination" and handling all aspects of communication with applicants and the organizations to ensure the highest level of accuracy and confidentiality in the process. NCSI is also responsible for complying with the Fair Credit Reporting Act and collecting and maintaining the privacy of the applicant information obtained in the background search process. NCSI is a resource for organizations in the implementation of child abuse & molestation prevention and response training programs as well.

"It is beyond words for me to express how much respect I have for the USOC to have embraced the strength and vital significance of NCSI's credible full service criminal background screening program," says NCYS Executive Director Sally S. Johnson. "We very much appreciate the confidence the USOC has placed in the NCYS and NCSI. The United States Olympic Committee has made an important and responsible decision."

In May 2003, President Bush signed the "PROTECT Act of 2003" into law naming National Council of Youth Sports (NCYS) as a participant in the federal legislation Prosecutorial Remedies and Other Tools to End the Exploitation of Children Today Act of 2003 (PROTECT Act) that addresses a variety of provisions for children’s safety including a fingerprint pilot program for national criminal history background checks and a feasibility study with the FBI. For a number of reasons, the fingerprinting method proved to not be the best match for youth sports programs.

Simultaneously NCYS began researching online criminal background screening companies who could support the needs of the youthserving industry and quickly identified major gaps in this approach, including the quality of the data providers and the fact that most people were not trained in the criminal background screening process. The resulting liability risks to its’ members was staggering. That’s when NCYS took the leadership role to help its industry in the most responsible way feasible by participating in the vision and creation of National Center for Safety Initiatives.

"Predators have gained access to our children because there has been no organized process or standard for conducting background screening checks on volunteers, coaches, administrators and anyone else who works with children," says Trish McGonnell, Cofounder & Executive Director of NCSI. "Leaders and parents need to understand the magnitude of this issue and resolve to be part of a solution that results in a safer environment for our youth and for the organizations who serve them."

NCSI is a full service screening company that works in accordance with the Recommended Guidelines© established by the National Council of Youth Sports (NCYS). NCSI focuses its efforts, systems and expertise into seven identified risk factors to ensure client organizations are meeting and exceeding due diligence. All criminal background checks go through NCSI’s CheckItTwice® system, which deploys multiprovider sourcing in the data collection process.

"The NCSI screening system is comprehensive, accurate, safe & secure, reliable, affordable and rapid! NCSI is the only organization of its kind in the country and the only company that NCYS has licensed to implement the "NCYS RECOMMENDED GUIDELINES For Background Check Screening In Nonprofit YouthServing Organizations"© which are quickly becoming the youthserving industry’s minimum standard, says NCYS President Wanda L. Rutledge.

The USOC, along with NCSI and the NCYS, believe this comprehensive approach will result ultimately in the safest possible environment for organizations and is exactly what is needed to protect our most valuable assets.

ABOUT the NCYS:
"A unified voice for youth sports." Vision: To enhance the youth sports experience in America. Mission Statement: The National Council of Youth Sports represents the youth sports industry by advancing the values of participation, and educating and developing leaders. The National Council of Youth Sports (NCYS) comprises the who's who in the youth sports industry. Its membership represents more than 180 organizations/corporations serving 52million boys and girls participating in organized youth sports throughout the United States. NCYS members include organizations such as: Amateur Athletic Union, Little League Baseball, Pop Warner Football/Little Scholars, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, U. S. Youth Soccer, USA Hockey, and many other USOC NGBs. To learn more about the NCYS visit www.ncys.org.

ABOUT NCSI:
"Relentless pursuit of safety" Vision: Creating Safety through Integrity, Vision and Technology Mission Statement: To create a national standard for background screening in youthserving organizations through supportstructured initiatives and to serve as a resource to youth organizations for background checks, training, policies, and other important activities in an overall effort to eradicate harm to children, child abuse and molestation in organizations, communities, and our Country National Center for Safety Initiatives (NCSI) offers a fullservice, integrated and dynamic approach to applicant screening within youth organizations. We specialize in the process and provide the most complete programs available. National Center for Safety Initiatives (NCSI) offers an easy, "onestop shop" with easily customized options and includes nationallevel screening using multiple databases, searches of all available state sex offender registries also using multiple sources of information, SSN/identity verification including previous address information, terrorist database searches, countylevel searches. Additional ala carte searches, including county courthouse, motor vehicle records and credit reporting are also available. Child Abuse & Molestation Prevention & Response training and online registration services are also offered.

CONTACT:
Sally S. Johnson, Executive Director
National Council of Youth Sports
772-7811452;
youthsports@ncys.org