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About the Volunteer Background Check Program


Baltimore County Government is committed to facilitating the safety of participants who engage in activities and programs. This commitment is demonstrated through the Volunteer Registration Program. The program includes background checks on all applicants who wish to volunteer for programming sponsored or run by the Department of Recreation and Parks, recreation councils, nature councils, therapeutic recreation and PAL centers.

The Volunteer Registration Program is not meant to take the place of family involvement in programming. It is meant to work in partnership with constituents to ensure that children and all participants enjoy programs and activities in a safe environment.


Volunteer background checks are conducted by the National Center for Safety Initiatives (NCSI), a company specializing in background screenings for volunteers in youth sports. Background checks verify applicants’ identities and search local, national and international criminal records. The results of a background check determine a volunteer applicant’s eligibility to volunteer for our programs.

Who Must Complete the Background Check

All volunteers must complete a background check, including:

  • Board of Recreation and Parks members
  • Recreation and Nature Council Board members, including all officers
  • Head and assistant coaches
  • Instructors and assistant instructors
  • Volunteers who have care, custody or control of children
  • Volunteers who have access to confidential information (example: registration forms, financial information, etc.)

Eligibility Criteria

Volunteer applicants are considered eligible to volunteer if none of the following offenses appear in the background checks. Any of the following offenses that resulted in charges, convictions, pending convictions, deferred sentences or adjudications, guilty pleas or pleas of no contest automatically disqualify any applicant from volunteering:

  • Abuse or Neglect of a Vulnerable Adult-Custodian
  • Assault-First Degree Felony
  • Attempted Murder
  • Child Abuse
  • Felony Assault (within the last five years)
  • Felony Robbery
  • Inclusion on the National Sex Offender Registry
  • Indecent Exposure (within the last five years)
  • Misappropriation of Funds
  • Murder
  • Possession of a controlled substance with intent to distribute (within the last five years)
  • Rape
  • Statutory Rape
  • Vulnerable Adult Abuse Physical Injury-Felony

How to Complete Your Background Check

Volunteer applications include the background check process. Review the volunteer application process for instructions and to complete the background check.

More Information

If you have questions or concerns about the background check process, please contact the Recreation Volunteer Coordinator.

View the Volunteer Background Check Program brochure (PDF).

Revised May 3, 2021         


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