Standards & Procedures
There are two types of investigations in which our group goes on.
Just for Fun Investigations
The "Just for Fun"
investigations are also our group investigations in which everyone is invited to
attend. Skeptics, Curious, Friends, Family, Inspiring Ghost Hunters,
Professional Ghost Hunters, everyone who has a fascination with the paranormal
and ghosts are welcomed to attend. Usually conducted or supervised by an
experienced member, the others in attendance get to experience first hand what
basic ghost hunting is like. Sometimes, new members or skeptics experience
something that makes them think twice about if ghosts are real.
The other type of investigation we do, the "Serious" investigation, is done with more experienced members when the quality of the investigation is more likely needed than the quantity of members. Too many people can have a human influence on the environment in which the paranormal is sought, resulting in pictures & audio recordings that are questionable. The more experienced members already have this understanding and know how to conduct themselves during the investigation.
Each member is sometimes selected for a particular talent or skill they bring to the investigation. For example, we have some people who are "Sensitive" to the presence of spiritual energy or "ghosts." These members are great to have along because they can point out where a spirit is, and sometimes on rare occasions, be able to tell what kind of spirit ~ male, female, child, happy, sad, etc.
Some of our other members use dowsing rods which we have proven to be a reliable source for finding spirits in a room. They also point the direction of where a spirit might be. With these means being Metaphysical, We balance this out with some members who have extensive knowledge of using Electro Magnetic Field Detectors, Night vision cameras, digital & 35mm cameras, Thermal Cameras, Geiger counters and cassette/digital recorders. Thanks to the sensitives and dowsers, they make it easy for the scientific investigators to gather evidence.
All members follow strict guidelines set forth by the International Ghost Hunters Society. These guidelines are used by many ghost organizations and clubs all over the world because they help to reduce the human influence/environmental factor which if left alone, will give skeptics ammo to shoot down paranormal evidence. If we take out or reduce these factors, what's left is believed to be genuine paranormal material.
During Investigations, Regardless of what type it is, All STGHA members must have a respect for the dead, as well as the living. This means that they are to conduct their investigation with a sense of maturity. Popping up around a corner and scaring someone is not tolerated because horseplay can lead to potential injuries. Most ghost hunts are done at night and with little light. Someone can trip or twist their ankle in a hole that is hard to see. It's disrespectful, so we ask all our members to not even think of it. To date, we haven't had any problems because we've got an excellent group of ghost hunters.
When we have investigations, we sometimes recruit other members from other groups to join us for a variety of reasons. Sometimes we're in their neighborhood, some of them are a blast to be with, some have talents and skills or experience that will prove useful to those who are going. What ever the reason, there is always a Lead Investigator who over see's the safety and well being of the group. If it's a STGHA ghost hunt, Steven Wolff is usually in command. If it's an R.E.I. investigation, David S. is in charge, etc.
Basically, we respect each others invitation to come and ghost hunt with them. This avoids potential battles and divisions amongst members with two chiefs leading the pack. Everyone knows that two chiefs in the same position doesn't work, so this is avoided long before it happens. Trespassing is NOT tolerated. If we are somewhere, we are there by permission, invitation, or by legal right. At the point when any laws are broken, we will seize all investigations, and leave immediately. We don't promote any of the above, and as we mentioned earlier, we have a respect for the dead and the living.
If we're at a cemetery, we're respectful of not touching, moving, vandalizing or taking anything that doesn't belong to us. If we're invited into someone's home, the same rule applies. If we're at a place of business, again, we conduct ourselves professionally and respectfully. People watch us closely, and our reputation is based on how we conduct ourselves both in person, by the way we dress, act, look, how we act and what we say during an investigation. Our group is one of the finest ever assembled. Why? Because we all conduct ourselves accordingly, and for what ever reason we're on the ghost hunt... we do it well. That's something we take pride in.