Thank you to those of you who have shown concern for the youth in Exodus programs. From your comments and your questions, e-mails and calls, I see that many of you really care about these kids and wanted to make sure that if any child is at risk, that all necessary and possible steps have being taken.
And they have, at least for the situations I alluded to in my last posts. Proper authorities (and parents) had been contacted, action had been taken. When faced with an immediate problem, Exodus dealt with it. That has never been the issue.
The problem is that in spite of the issues that I brought to Alan Chambers’ attention, the conditions exist where interaction between youth and adult participants can still happen. Also Exodus does not have any publicly known guidelines that specify staff working with youth must undergo appropriate background checks. That means that youth are still at risk. Without any local or state oversight, the only authority over Exodus member ministries is their own and whatever Exodus President, Alan Chambers, and the Exodus board chooses to exercise.
So what will Exodus and Alan Chambers do so that these situations will never occur again? A first step would be to draft, publish, implement, and monitor guidelines that are designed to protect these youth from potential predators.
Alan has had ample time to do this and more than enough authority.
So now what? We are not powerless. Let’s continue to put pressure on Alan and the Exodus Board to make the necessary changes to ensure the basic safety of youth. With the sort of damage that we know comes with ex-gay ministry, that is the least that they could do.