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In Support of Happy, Healthy, and Safe Childhoods

In Support of Happy, Healthy, and Safe Childhoods

We began this week with a group of 200+ employee-owners returning to our office.  For many it was their first time back in the office in over a year.  They were greeted by hundreds of blue pinwheels decorating our lawn, adding a celebratory feeling to our return to office. But the pinwheels carry more significance than simple décor.

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month, so in support of Family & Children’s Council (FCC) of Black Hawk County, we’re using their pinwheels to take a stand against child abuse. FCC does amazing work in VGM’s home community, to prevent child abuse and strengthen families. From parent education to sexual abuse prevention training, FCC has provided free programs and services since 1980. VGM is proud to support their mission.

The pain and suffering of victims of abuse, and their loved ones, is immense. Allegations of abuse can seem so horrifying and incomprehensible that there can be a tendency to not give them a serious and thoughtful consideration. We must listen to the children, be observant and aware, and protect the children however we possibly can.

This is the same approach, of listening and taking seriously, that we use in handling any complaints of inappropriate behavior among employees at VGM. Over the years, we have solidified the strength of our approach to workplace misconduct and sexual harassment. An important component of that is listening.

It may be difficult to believe that abuse happens in our own communities or workplaces. It is especially hard to stomach the idea of someone we know deliberately harming children. But the safety of kids, and any person for whom we bear responsibility, has to come first.

Unfortunately, sexual misconduct is not limited to children. Adults can be victims as well, and at VGM, we have strict policies in place to protect them too. We take any allegations seriously and move immediately to investigate and act. We hold our employee owners to high standards of personal conduct and mutual respect. We work to create a culture of caring.

We may not be able to prevent all harassment, mistreatment, or abuse of children, but we can help raise awareness—and awareness is the first step. 


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