When Do You Need a Waiver for Volunteers?
If you have a robust corporate volunteerism program, there’s no doubt you’ve encountered a volunteer opportunity that calls for a waiver. Waivers are commonplace, whether they’re slips of paper passed around with a clipboard and pen or they’re digital forms signed with your finger at an easy-to-use waiver kiosk. But many people sign waivers without asking why they’re signing. And most people sign them quickly, eager to get on with the activity they’re going to participate in without dwelling too long on the risk they’re being required to acknowledge.
When employees participate in social good programs, they expect that precautions will be in place so that they’re safe while they donate their time to a specific cause. Conversely, organizations that help you provide those volunteer opportunities also expect that they will be protected from legal action should something go wrong. That’s where the agreement between both parties comes in—with a waiver.
Waivers may not be top of mind for you as you’re working to provide corporate volunteerism opportunities. But waivers are a necessary part of the volunteer experience, as they protect your employees, your company, and your nonprofit partners. When your employees sign a waiver before volunteering, they get the chance to walk into the volunteer opportunity knowing the risks they’re taking on.