USAG Stuttgart Public Affairs Office
Effective Sept. 18, U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart announced it will temporarily suspend religious support activities for children and youth.
The temporary suspension is a result of an Army-wide child care suitability file review.
“Throughout the Army, garrisons have been directed to conduct a 100 percent check of child care procedures. During this process, I am pleased that I have not discovered any situation where I believe children were put in danger, but I have determined that our vetting procedures for chapel volunteers and contractors working with minors are not in full compliance with Army regulations,” wrote Chaplain (Col.) Warren Kirby, the USAG Stuttgart chaplain, in a message to the various RSO congregations.
To ensure the full health, welfare and safety of community children, USAG Stuttgart officials elected to temporarily suspend all religious services programs that involve children and youth.
“Unfortunately, we currently do not have enough properly vetted volunteers to support our child and youth chapel programs,” Kirby’s message said.
“I understand the how the temporary suspension of programs for children and youth will impact the community’s worship experience. Rest assured, we are diligently working to resolve this issue as quickly as possible,” he concluded.
According to garrison officials, at least a portion of the required checks have been completed for more than 250 volunteers and 19 contract employees.
The suspension will last until the garrison completes the background check process.
The suspended programs include programs such as children’s church, Sunday school, youth retreats and child care provided during adult activities.