Safe Environment & Protecting Children

Called to Protect

The abuse crisis in the Catholic Church first came to attention of many when multiple allegations surfaced in the Archdiocese of Boston; revelations of sexual abuse of minors has spread throughout the world in a widening cycle of failure and recrimination. As a Jesuit parish, St. Joseph is keenly aware of the anguish caused not just by the failure of individual priests and Jesuits but by the systemic failure of the Church to accept responsibility and provide appropriate care for the most vulnerable. In light of this history, and the call of the Gospels, St. Joseph Parish is dedicated to justice and reconciliation of the past and to the highest standards of protection for the future.

As a Parish, we fully adhere to the Archdiocese of Seattle's Safe Environment Program. Staff are all certified in this area. Further, all parishioners, parents, and volunteers who work with vulnerable populations are required to take the three hour Safe Environment Training Program and annual updates.

Classes are held several times a year at St. Joseph and at neighboring parishes throughout western Washington. Classes may be taken in any parish in the diocese.

This training does not just aim to stop the predatory individuals, but to help all of us to recognize the warning signs of abuse and to empower us to act before a child or vulnerable adult is harmed. It teaches us to take responsibility in a way that we, as Church must, if we are to heal our history and bless our future.

To report any suspicion of abuse by any church personnel, call 911.

Anyone who has knowledge of sexual abuse or misconduct by a member of the clergy, an employee or volunteer please call the helpline 1-800-446-7762 or email

If you or anyone you know has felt victimized by a Jesuit at any time, please contact Mary Pat Panighetti, advocacy coordinator for Jesuits West, at 408-893-8398 or mppanighetti@

To report to the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) call 1-866-363-4276

For more information consult the Archdiocesan website.

Additional Information
Code of Professional Conduct
USCCB Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People
Educating Yourself As The Parent/Guardian