Section 7-2.5 - Personnel, supervision and camp safety plan

7-2.5 Personnel, supervision and camp safety plan. (a) Each children's camp shall have a camp director, who may also be the camp operator, responsible for supervising the camp program. Minimum qualifications shall be:

(1) bachelor's degree, or at least 25 years of age for an overnight camp and 21 years for a summer day or traveling summer day camp;

(2) at least 24 weeks of previous administrative or supervisory experience in camping or equivalent experience acceptable to the State Commissioner of Health;

(3) a notification from the Department of Social Services State Central Register of Abuse and Maltreatment that the director has not been subject of an investigation report; and

(4) the submission of a form entitled Prospective Children's Camp Director Certified Statement Relative to the Conviction of a Crime or the Existence of a Pending Criminal Action, as developed by the commissioner, and a determination by the local permit-issuing official that the camp director has no criminal conviction record for which:

(i) there is a direct relationship between one or more of the criminal offenses and the applicant's employment as a camp director; and

(ii) employment as a camp director would involve an unreasonable risk to the property or to the safety or welfare of camp participants or the general public.

(b) Counselors shall be at least 18 years of age at a children's overnight camp, and at least 16 years of age at a summer day or traveling summer day camp, and may include both specialty and general counselors. In addition, the counselor shall either have experience in camping and supervision of children, or have completed a training course acceptable to the permit-issuing official. It shall be the responsibility of the camp operator to verify a prospective counselor's background and character through reasonable and diligent inquiries, including but not limited to character references submitted.

(1) During passive activities the ratio of counselors to campers shall be no greater than 1:25. A passive activity is defined as an activity which takes place in a defined area, where participants are spectators or have limited mobility and use no tools or equipment (other than computers). Examples of passive activities include, but are not limited to: religious instruction, storytelling, coloring, viewing movies or drama, singing and board games. The camp's passive activities must be described in the camp's approved safety plan. Supervision ratios must be reinstated to the code required level at the conclusion of the passive activity.

(c) At an overnight camp, unless specified otherwise in section 7-2.11 of this Subpart for specialty activities and trips, the ratio of counselors to children eight years of age and over shall be 1:10; for children younger than eight years of age, the ratio shall be 1:8; a maximum of 20 percent of the total required counselors may be 17 years of age.

(1) During the hours campers are resting or sleeping, the supervision ratio may be modified based on the arrangement, size and location of the sleeping area(s) and potential for visual and/or verbal supervision, to a level accepted by the permit-issuing official and described in the camp's approved safety plan; provided in all circumstances that:

(i) supervision is adequate to protect the campers from any unreasonable risk to their health or safety; and

(ii) at least one counselor is present on every level used for resting or sleeping in a multi-story building. Supervision ratios must be reinstated to the code required level at the conclusion of the resting or sleeping period.

(d) At a summer day or traveling summer day camp, the general ratio of counselors to children shall be 1:12. Counselor-to-camper ratios as indicated in Section 7-2.11 of this Subpart for specialty activities and trips must be met at all times during such specialty activities. The permit-issuing official may be more restrictive in specifying counselor-to-camper ratios if such official deems it reasonable and necessary for camper safety.

(e) Camp aquatics director – A camp aquatics director shall oversee all swimming activities that occur at swimming pools and bathing beaches operated as part of a children's camp. This person shall supervise lifeguards, progressive swimming instructors, and counselors with bather supervision responsibilities during swimming activities; and implement the camp safety plan. The camp aquatics director shall:

(1) be at least 21 years of age;

(2) have a minimum of:

(i) one season of previous experience as a camp aquatics director at a New York State children's camp; or

(ii) two seasons of previous experience consisting cumulatively of at least 12 weeks as a children's camp lifeguard, as specified in subdivision (g) of this section, at a swimming pool or bathing beach which had more than one lifeguard supervising it at a time; or

(iii) at least 18 weeks of previous experience as a lifeguard, as specified in paragraph (g)(2) of this section, at a swimming pool or bathing beach which had more than one lifeguard supervising it at a time;

(3) effective until December 31, 2011 possess current certification:

(i) as a progressive swimming instructor, as defined in subdivision (f) of this section; or

(ii) as a qualified lifeguard, as defined in subdivision (g) of this section, possessing lifeguard certification specific to the type of bathing facility at the children's camp; or

(iii) in a training course for lifeguard supervision and management that meets the requirements specified in Part 6 Section 6-1.31(e) or Section 6-2.20(e) of this title.

(4) effective January 1, 2012 have successfully completed a training course in lifeguard supervision and management that meets the requirements specified in Part 6 Section 6-1.31(e) or Section 6-2.20(e) of this title;

(5) have annually reviewed and documented the review of the camp’s safety plan for swimming; and

(6) possess a current certificate in an acceptable cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) training program as defined in subdivision 7-2.2(n) of this Subpart.

(f) Progressive swimming instructor - As described in the camp's approved safety plan, a progressive swimming instructor must assess the swimming ability of each camper prior to allowing the child to participate in aquatic activities. A progressive swimming instructor must be either:

(1) a Water Safety Instructor currently certified by the ARC; or

(2) possess a current certificate issued by a certifying agency determined by the State Commissioner of Health to provide an adequate level of similar training.

(g) Qualified lifeguard - Qualified lifeguards shall actively supervise participants in the camp's aquatic activities, as detailed in the camp's approved safety plan. While on duty at the waterfront, qualified lifeguards shall not be engaged in duties or activities which distract them from the direct supervision of the waterfront. A qualified lifeguard shall:

(1) be at least 17 years of age, except:

(i) for a maximum of 50 percent of the required total number of lifeguards on-duty who may be at least 16 years of age; and

(ii) lifeguards required for wilderness swimming who must be at least 18 years of age; and

(2) meet lifeguarding, first aid and CPR certification requirements as detailed in Part 6 of this Title:

 

BATHING FACILITY TYPE MINIMUM LIFEGUARD SUPERVISION LEVEL
Ocean Surf Supervision Level I
Pool Only Supervision Level IIa
Pool and/or Beach Supervision Level IIb

 

(h) Trip leader - A trip leader shall be at least 18 years of age and have participated in at least three camp trips in a similar program activity as a children's camp staff member or have experience and training in the activity which the permit-issuing official has determined to be equivalent to three camp trips. Trip leaders for wilderness, equestrian, boating and similar specialized activities shall be competent in the activity. A trip leader of a camp trip with an itinerary that includes an activity where emergency medical care is not readily available and/or an activity such as wilderness hiking, camping, rock climbing, horseback riding, bicycling, swimming and/or boating, shall possess or be accompanied by staff who possesses a current certificate in an acceptable first aid training program as defined in subdivision 7-2.2(m) of this Subpart, and a current certificate in an acceptable cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) training program as defined in subdivision 7-2.2(n) of this Subpart.

(i) Activity leader. An activity leader shall be competent in the activity being conducted. Activity leaders of an activity that includes wilderness hiking, camping, rock climbing, horseback riding, bicycling, swimming and/or boating shall be at least 18 years of age. When a camp activity is conducted at a location where the camp staff certified in first aid and CPR in accordance with Subdivision 7-2.8(a) are not readily available, an activity leader shall possess or be accompanied by staff who possesses a current certificate in an acceptable first aid training program as defined in subdivision 7-2.2(m) of this Subpart, and a current certificate in an acceptable cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) training program as defined in subdivision 7-2.2(n) of this Subpart.

(j) Riflery instructors shall have a current Instructor's certificate issued by the National Rifle Association or its equivalent generally accepted as providing a similar or equivalent level of riflery skill.

(k) Counselor-in-training (CIT). A CIT or Junior Counselor is a camper who is assigned to an on-duty counselor or other staff member to assist, as described in the camp's approved safety plan, in performing specific duties. A CIT may not independently supervise campers, and shall be supervised as a camper. All CITs shall receive training specific to their duties, and camper orientation. A maximum of 10 percent of the total number of counselors required by subdivisions (c) and (d) of this section may be CITs, provided:

(1) CITs at a children's overnight camp are at least 16 years of age and have at least two seasons prior experience as a camper; and

(2) CITs at a summer day or traveling summer day camp are at least 15 years of age and have at least two seasons prior experience as a camper.

(l) Records identifying staff qualifications shall be maintained in the camp for inspection by the permit-issuing official or his designated representative. The camp operator shall ascertain whether an employee or volunteer is listed on the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) Sex Offender Registry prior to the day such employee or volunteer commences work at camp and annually thereafter prior to their arrival at camp. A written record of the employee and volunteer names that were submitted to the DCJS for checking against the Sex Offender Registry and DCJS's search results shall be kept on file at the site and made available to the permit-issuing official upon request.

(m) No individual known to be a carrier of a communicable disease shall be employed at a children's camp.

(n) Camp safety plan. The camp operator must develop, review annually and update, as required, a camp safety plan, which shall be submitted for review and approval to the permit-issuing official as described in paragraph 7-2.4(c)(1) of this Subpart. A camp safety plan shall be considered satisfactory for approval when it is found to include all the information required in this section and accurately reflects the children's camp's compliance with this Subpart. The camp's approved safety plan shall be implemented by the camp operator and kept on file at the children's camp. The camp safety plan shall consist of, at a minimum, a table of contents and the following components:

(1) personnel: chain of command; staff job descriptions; and a procedure for verification of staff qualifications;

(2) facility operation and maintenance: water supply; sewage treatment system; lightning risk assessment; transportation; housing; grounds; food protection; and waterfront physical facility maintenance (if on-site aquatic activities are provided);

(3) fire safety: evacuation of buildings and property, assembly, supervision, and accounting for campers and staff; fire prevention; coordination with local fire officials; fire alarm and detection systems and their operation, maintenance, and routine testing; type, location and maintenance of fire extinguishers; inspection and maintenance of exits; required fire drills and log; electrical safety; and reporting to the permit-issuing official within 24 hours fires which destroy or damage any camp building, or which result in notification of the fire department, or are life or health threatening. A copy of this segment of the approved camp safety plan must be submitted to the local fire district or department;

(4) medical requirements: review of camper confidential medical histories to address restrictions and special needs; initial health screening of campers; daily health surveillance of campers; procedures for providing basic first aid, handling medical emergencies, including outbreaks and procedures for response to allegations of child abuse; identification of and provisions for medical, nursing and emergency medical services; identity, qualifications and outline of duties of health director and health personnel certified in first aid and CPR; description of health center; storage and administration of medicines; location and use of first aid and CPR supplies; maintenance of a medical log; description of universal precautions for bloodborne pathogens; reporting of illness and injuries, including camper abuse/allegations to the permit-issuing official within 24 hours; and provisions to supervise sanitation at the children's camp;

(5) general and activity specific safety: description of the required camper supervision, including general supervision, between activities, for passive activities, during sleeping and rest hours, transportation and for emergencies. Safety requirements and supervision must be discussed for specific camper activities, including but not limited to, swimming, boating, horseback riding, rope or challenge courses, archery, riflery, camp trips, wilderness activities and any activity in which incidental water immersion occurs;

(6) staff training: training curriculum outline; tour of camp; description of camp hazards; chain of command; procedures for camper supervision and discipline; child abuse recognition and reporting; provisions for first aid and emergency medical assistance; reporting of camper injury and illness; buddy system; lost swimmer plan (if camp has an aquatics program); lost camper plan, lightning plan, fire safety and fire drills; camp evacuation procedures; activity specific training for assigned activities; camp trips (if provided); and process to document training attendance; and

(7) camper orientation: orientation curriculum outline; tour of camp; description of camp hazards; reporting illness, injury and other incidents; buddy system; lost camper plan; fire drills and evacuation; lightning plan; camp trips; and process to document orientation attendance.

(o) The camp operator shall provide adequate supervision. Adequate supervision shall mean:

(1) supervision such that a camper is protected from any unreasonable risk to his or her health or safety, including physical or sexual abuse or any public health hazard; and

(2) as a minimum, there shall exist visual or verbal communications capabilities between camper and counselor during activities and a method of accounting for the camper's whereabouts at all times.

(p) The camp operator shall provide, with any enrollment application forms and/or enrollment contract forms mailed or delivered to a person for purposes of enrollment of a child for any children's camp, a written statement and/or brochure outlining the rights and responsibilities of campers and camp operators and declaring:

(1) that such camp is required to be permitted to operate by the New York State Department of Health;

(2) that such camp is required to be inspected twice yearly; and

(3) the address where inspection reports concerning such camps are filed.

Effective Date: 
Wednesday, June 22, 2016
Doc Status: 
Complete
Statutory Authority: 
Public Health Law, Section 225