Red Cross Mandatory Background Checks - Free Service

Lee Besing

This is the direction that future disaster operations will be moving. Mandatory background checks before you are allowed to volunteer in a Red Cross Shelter, and eventually in order to get the official photo ID for disaster operations in this county. Read the following and consider strongly accepting their offer to have this done free as a Red Cross volunteer. There is no obligation to you, nor any cost to you, but it opens the door for your ability to volunteer your radio services in the future.


Subject: Information From Karen Smithhart, Director of Office of Volunteer for the Chapter
Date: Thu, 17 Aug 2006 08:39:55 -0500
From: "Todd, Jim" <ToddJ@...>

From The Office of Volunteers and Karen Smithhart:
I'd like to share with you, our currently active and new volunteer candidates, the following message from Jack McGuire, Interim President and CEO, and Kate Forbes, National Chair of Volunteers:
"With the 2006 hurricane season upon us, we believe that in order to maintain the trust of the American people and provide them with the best quality service, all Red Cross employees and volunteers must be background-checked according to standards being implemented across the entire organization."
To ensure proper stewardship of donated funds, and the safety and security of our volunteers as well as those we serve, we would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your dedicated service and for understanding the need to initiate this background-check process.

Beginning in July 2006, all Red Cross employees and volunteers must undergo background checks through a single mandatory vendor. If you are a candidate to volunteer or are a Red Cross volunteer who has never received a Red Cross background check, you must do so before October 31, 2006. Failure to do so will result in your being removed from our active volunteer files. If you are a disaster volunteer who underwent the DSHR background check between November 2005 and July 2006, you do not need to undergo the process again. By receipt of this notice, you are directed to a website to initiate the background check. The vendor will then conduct a background check and send the results to you and our unit. We request that you initiate this process as soon as possible. There is no charge to you.

No Credit check!! Although the standard consent form on the vendor's website mentions credit checks, the Red Cross mandatory minimum background check includes only a social security number verification and a search of the National Criminal File for the past seven years (from the date of disposition, release from prison, or release from probation or parole, whichever occurs last). Please be assured that a credit check is not part of the minimum standard background check for the Red Cross.

In order to initiate your background check, follow these simple steps:

1. Visit the vendor's website at
2. Click on lower right box stating American Red Cross "click here".
3. Click on black "Request a background check" box.
4. Click on the picture of the state of Texas.
5. Scroll to San Antonio Area Chapter and click.
6. Read with care your rights and provide your consent to the background check.
7. Enter personal information as requested, which includes your name, date of birth, social security number, and driver's license number (if you have one). Your part of this process is now complete.
8. Wait to hear about the results from your unit administrator and/or the vendor.
9. If you dispute the results of the background check for any reason, follow the instructions provided by the vendor.

If you would like more information about this initiative, please visit the CrossNet site devoted to this topic, which provides comprehensive information about the background check process, including answers to many Frequently Asked Questions. In addition, a new National Background Check Office is staffed with professionals who can address your questions (800-507-3960, Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 7 pm ET). If you have any technical questions about the website, please contact the vendor at 1(800) 503-2364 ext 406.

NOTE: If you do not have access to a computer, you may use a friend's, local public library or you can set-up an appointment here at headquarters using one of our computers. Please call and leave a message at 582-1925 stating you wish to set up your appointment.

Karen Smithhart
Director of Volunteers, Youth and Branch Services
American Red Cross, San Antonio Area Chapter
3642 E. Houston St. 78219
Please note new email address

Jim Todd
Associate Director Disaster Services
The American Red Cross, San Antonio Area Chapter
3642 E. Houston St.
San Antonio, TX 78219
210-224-5151 x240
210-582-1969 FAX
This is a New Email Address
73 de N5NTG Lee W. Besing San Antonio, Texas
(210)771-7075 mobile
Running EchoLink as Node #77005
Running APRS as N5NTG-9, track me on the Internet

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