Child Protection Policy

The Point Church Child Protection Policy

September 2013

Adapted from the Diocese of Chichester Policy 2009

A MESSAGE FROM THE BISHOP OF CHICHESTER

The dignity of the human person should be a prime concern for every Christian and every church. Once we recognise that every human being has been made in the image and likeness of God, it is our obligation to exercise the greatest possible care from conception to death. This highlights the importance of creating and sustaining a safe environment in which everyone can flourish.

In common with the rest of society the Church of England has in recent years become increasingly aware of the need to establish policies and practices for safeguarding, for the whole community of course, but very specifically for the sake of those least able to protect themselves. It is also necessary to be clear about how to act when things go wrong and abuses of various kinds occur.

I welcome this revised text as a significant contribution to this work and commend it to the Diocese. The implementation of its principles, guidance and requirements will help us all maintain the highest standards and provide necessary protection not only for those who may be vulnerable but also for everyone working with them.

Yours in Christ,
+John
Diocese of Chichester 2009

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CONTENTS

The booklet is organised into various colour-coded sections:

Introduction

The Church’s Commitment

Policy – General statements of intent and underlying principles

P1. Introduction
P2. Principles of the House of Bishops’ child protection policy P3. Policy statement
P4. Working Together to Safeguard Children 2006
P5. Faith Communities

Procedures – Administrative routines and other directives which must be followed to comply with a minimum of safe practice
G1. Parochial Church Council responsibilities
G2. Child Protection Co-ordinator

G3. Implementing or reviewing the Diocesan policy, procedures and practice guidance in the parish
G4. Training requirements

Procedure for safe recruitment

G5. Diocesan appointments G6. General information G7. Making an appointment

Procedure for responding to concerns

G8. Introduction
G9. Disclosures concerning non-church organisations
G10. Disclosures from a child or young person
G11. Disclosures of abuse from adults
G12. Disclosures of historical abuse
G13. Disclosure from an abuser
G14. Seeking advice after hearing a disclosure
G15. Sharing information – government guidance
G16. Making a referral
G17. Following a referral about a person in a position of trust G18. The role of the senior strategy meeting
G19. Suspension
G20. Pastoral support
G21. Communications with the media
G22. Insurance advice
G23. Checklist for those making referrals
G24. Following an investigation
G25. Situations where there is no conviction
G26. Re-deployment following a conviction or caution
G27. Completing the process

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G28. Survivors of Abuse

Procedure for whistle-blowing

G29. Introduction
G30. Reasons for whistle-blowing
G31. What stops people from whistle-blowing G32. How to raise a concern
G33. What happens next?
G34. Self reporting

Procedure for ministering to people who pose a risk to children

G35. Introduction
G36. Ministering to people who pose a risk to children G37. Circles of support and accountability

Procedure for outside groups using church premises

G38. Booking forms
G39. One-off bookings
G40. Regular bookings
G41. Suggested agreements for outside groups

Recommended Practice – Advice to create a safe environment for children. Whilst this is more flexible it is also the main way children are protected and should be followed as closely as possible. Changes to this section should only be made after seeking the advice of the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser. All workers with children should have access to this section

Y1. Working safely with children a checklist for ‘best practice’ Y2. Physical contact and child protection
Y3. Inappropriate behaviour by children towards adults
Y4. Anti-bullying

Y5. Young leaders (under 18)
Y6. A safe environment for children’s activities
Y7. Formal registration of children’s groups
Y8. Staffing levels
Y9. Individual tuition
Y10. Premises and other health and safety advice
Y11. First aid
Y12. Children and young people with special needs
Y13. Taking children and young people out
Y14. Guidelines for transporting children by private car
Y15. Additional guidelines for residential events for children and young people
Y16. Sleeping on church premises
Y17. Guidelines for holiday clubs and missions
Y18. Mixed age groups in churches and child protection
Y19. Private tuition on church premises
Y20. Home visits
Y21. Seeing young people on their own as a “befriender”, “listener” or “counsellor” in youth camp or parish setting
Y22. Use of own home

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Y23. Unaccompanied children
Y24. Communicating electronically and the Internet
Y25. Taking and publishing photographs including websites Y26. Guidance on drugs and alcohol

Information – Background material which may be of interest

B1. Responsibilities as set out in “Protecting all God’s Children 2004”
B2. Criminal Records Bureau
B3. Confidentiality and information sharing
B4. Managing investigations where the church worker is not the primary concern B5. What is abuse and neglect?

B6. Information about the sexual abuse of children B7. Care of adult survivors of abuse in the church B8. Resources

Appendices

  1. Child Protection policy statement
  2. Progress chart for the appointment of a worker or volunteer in youth orchildren’s work
  3. Introductory recruitment information for clergy, those who hold the Bishop’slicence, paid employees and volunteers who will have contact with children
  4. Parish information and application form for all paid and voluntary workerswith children and young people
  5. Confidential self-declaration form (to also be completed for those wishing towork with children or vulnerable people)
  6. Pro forma letter for referees
  7. Reference questionnaire
  8. A sample job role for volunteers / workers with children and young people
  9. Declaration for visiting choirs, volunteers or church workers from otherparishes, denominations or organisation
  10. Annual appraisal forms
  11. Registration form
  12. Parental consent form
  13. Suggested agreements for use with outside groups
  14. Checklist for referrals
  15. Session recording sheet
  16. Incident report form
  17. Anti-bullying policy
  18. Identifying hazards in youth and children’s work (Risk Assessment)
  19. Consent to use of images
  20. Implementation checklist
  21. Contact list

All relevant information for the safeguarding of children and young people can also be found on the Diocesan web site:-

  • ·  The House of Bishops’ Policy – Protecting all God’s Children (2004)
  • ·  The Diocesan policy and procedures & practice guidance – The Care andProtection of Children (2009)
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· Recruitment and Criminal Records Bureau procedures and advice at www.diochi.org.uk

The procedures and recommended good practice contained in this document are issued on the authority of the Bishop of the Diocese, and are to be used by the cathedral, parishes and all organisations, which are under the auspices of the Diocese. Careful implementation of this policy and clear communication of its elements to the congregation, including parents and children, will play a vital role in the Diocese of Chichester’s commitment to safeguard children. It will help to ensure that children and young people can participate fully in the wide range of pastoral, social and other general activities in an environment in which they will be safe from harm and abuse. This is the responsibility of the whole church community and is in accordance with House of Bishops’ National Policy statement on Child Protection Policy;

Introduction

The Church’s commitment to safeguard and promote the welfare of children

All children deserve the opportunity to achieve their full potential as described in the Department for Children, Schools and Families guidance “Every Child Matters” and in “The Children Act 2004” to:

  • ·  Stay safe
  • ·  Be healthy
  • ·  Enjoy and achieve
  • ·  Make a positive contribution
  • ·  Achieve economic well-being.The Church of England is committed to this agenda and recognises the necessity to keep children safe within the community of the Church. The Diocese and each parish wish to play their part together with parents, carers, schools and other agencies in safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children.Everyone responsible for congregations and organisations in the Diocese should make themselves familiar with and implement the House of Bishops’ policy document “Protecting all God’s Children 2004” and this accompanying Diocesan Child Protection Document “The Care and Protection of Children 2009”. This document is based on the relevant legislation “The Children Act 1989/2004” and its accompanying guidance “Working Together to Safeguard Children 2006”. It complies with the Sussex Safeguarding Children Boards’ child protection and safeguarding procedures.

    This policy document provides a safe framework within which church workers can conduct their important ministry to children and young people. Failure to implement the policy could invalidate any third party liability insurance or leave a Parochial Church Council open to the possibility of being sued for negligence should a child or young person come to harm whilst involved in church activities.

    Information to help with applying for disclosures from the Criminal Records Bureau is issued separately. This is because changes occur at regular intervals. Important changes to the scheme will begin to be implemented in Autumn 2009. Please

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contact the CRB administrator at Diocesan Church House (01273 421021) if you are unsure whether you have the most up-to-date guidance.

The Diocese will be providing advice on the protection of vulnerable adults in the near future.

A child is defined as a boy or girl under18 years of age.

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POLICY

General statements of principle and Intent

Church of England – House of Bishops’ policy on child protection

P1. Introduction

The House of Bishops’ policy and its accompanying guidance “Protecting all God’s Children 2004” has been agreed by all the bishops of the Church of England. With the most recent government guidelines “Working together to Safeguard Children 2006” it forms the basis of our Diocesan document. The House of Bishops’ policy is accepted by the church insurance company Ecclesiastical Insurance Group as the minimum required to fulfil insurance requirements.

P2. Principles of the House of Bishops’ child protection policy

  • ·  We are committed to the safeguarding, care and nurture of the children within our church community.
  • ·  We will carefully select and train ordained and lay ministers, volunteers and paid workers with children and young people, using the Criminal Records Bureau, to check the background of each person.
  • ·  We will respond without delay to every complaint made, that a child or young person for whom we are responsible may have been harmed.
  • ·  We will fully cooperate with statutory agencies during any investigation they make into allegations concerning a member of the church community.
  • ·  We will seek to offer informed pastoral care to any child, young person or adult who has suffered abuse.
  • ·  We will care for and supervise any member of our church community known to have offended against a child.P3. Policy statementThe Church of England, in all aspects of its life, is committed to and will champion the protection of children and young people both in society as a whole and in its own community. It fully accepts, endorses and will implement the principle enshrined in the Children Act 1989 that the welfare of the child is paramount. The Church of England will foster and encourage best practice within its community by setting standards for working with children and young people and by supporting parents in the care of their children. It will work with statutory bodies, voluntary agencies and other faith communities to promote the safety and well-being of children and young people. It is committed to acting promptly whenever a concern is raised about a child or young person or about the behaviour of an adult, and will work with the appropriate statutory bodies when an investigation into child abuse is necessary.

    P4. Working Together to Safeguard Children 2006

    States: To fulfil their commitment to safeguard and promote the welfare of children all organisations that provide services for children, or work with children, need to have in place:

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  • ·  Clear priorities for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children explicitly stated in strategic policy documents
  • ·  A clear commitment by senior management to the importance of safeguarding and promoting children’s welfare
  • ·  A clear line of accountability within the organisation for work on safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children
  • ·  Recruitment and human resources management procedures that take account of the need to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and young people including arrangements for appropriate checks on new staff and volunteers
  • ·  Procedures for dealing with allegations of abuse against members of staff and volunteers
  • ·  Arrangements to ensure that all staff undertake appropriate training to equip them to carry out their responsibilities effectively, and keep this up-to-date by refresher training at regular intervals; and that all staff, including temporary staff and volunteers who work with children, are made aware of the establishment’s arrangements for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and their responsibilities for that
  • ·  Have policies in place for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, including a child protection policy, and procedures that are in accordance with guidance from the Local Authority and locally agreed inter-agency procedures
  • ·  Have arrangements in place to work effectively with other organisations to safeguard and promote the welfare of children, including arrangements for sharing information
  • ·  A culture of listening to and engaging in dialogue with children – seeking their views in ways appropriate to their age and understanding, and taking account of those both in individual decisions and the establishment or development of services; and
  • ·  Appropriate whistle-blowing procedures and a culture that enables issues about safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children to be addressedP5. Faith Communities2Churches, other places of worship and faith based organisations provide a wide range of activities for children and young people. They are some of the largest providers of children and youth work, and have an important role in safeguarding children and supporting families.

    Religious leaders, staff and faith-based organisations need to have appropriate arrangements in place for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children to include:

  • ·  Procedures for staff and volunteers to report concerns that they may have about the children they meet that are in line with “What To Do If You Are Worried A Child Is Being Abused” and Local Safeguarding Children Board procedures
  • ·  Appropriate codes of practice for those working directly with children
  • ·  Recruitment procedures
  • ·  Training and supervision of staff
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PROCEDURES

Administrative routines and other directives that must be followed.

These procedures are consistent with The House of Bishops’ Policy “Protecting all God’s Children 2004”

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Introduction

G1. Parochial Church Council responsibilities

In law the incumbent and PCC or Board of Trustees are the responsible body in respect of church activities that are carried out under their auspices or control, and have a duty of care towards their children and young people. This means that the incumbent and PCC or Board of Trustees must follow the procedures set out in this Diocesan document and also do their best to follow the practice recommendations. In team ministries the practical implementation of the policy is often undertaken by a District Church Council. Each Church Council must provide an implementation document setting down how it will administer the procedures and what guidelines of good practice it will follow. See G3 for help with implementation.

Any changes to the recommended practice must be discussed and agreed with the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser.

The Board of Trustees must review both its policy statement and its implementation document every year. The Child Protection Co-ordinator should conduct the review and present a report at the AGM. The Child Protection policy and its implementation document should be presented to the new Board of Trustees as soon as possible after the AGM so that new members of the Board of Trustees can become aware of their responsibilities. The Point’s commitment to the policy should be renewed by completing a new “Child Protection Policy Statement” (see Appendix 1). This should be posted on the church notice board and a copy sent to the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser.

The Board of Trustees needs to delegate its responsibilities for the management of specific cases to the incumbent and Child Protection Co-ordinator so that the highest level of confidentiality can be maintained at all times.

G2. Child Protection Co-ordinator

  • ·  The Board of Trustees must appoint a Child Protection Co-ordinator to be responsible under them for implementing the House of Bishops’ policy and the Diocesan requirements in the network church
  • ·  The Child Protection Co-ordinator should work closely with the incumbent and if possible be co-opted on the Board of Trustees. He or she should make a report to the Board of Trustees at least once a year
  • ·  This role can be divided between different people if that is more practical. Each person should be clear about his or her responsibilities
  • ·  This role should be ideally undertaken by a layperson with special skills or experience of working with children – a parent, a grandparent, a foster carer, teacher, nursery worker, youth worker, or anyone who cares about standards of childcare within their parish community. The Co-ordinator will be someone of integrity; they will be respected in their parishes and will be able to maintain appropriate confidentiality. Ideally the Coordinator should be someone who is not already an office holder or responsible for children or youth work in the parish so that independence is maintained.The co-ordinator should attend training provided by the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser at least every three years.
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The Co-ordinator will be responsible for:

  • ·  Possessing a copy of “Protecting all God’s Children 2004” as well as this document and being familiar with their contents
  • ·  Implementing the Policy, procedures and practice guidelines
  • ·  Making any extra recommendations required for the particular circumstances of a parish or its premises and having those agreed by the Board of Trustees
  • ·  Receiving, with the incumbent, any concerns about children or adults in the parish and making sure that proper advice is sought from the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser and appropriate referrals made. Concerns regarding clergy should be passed to the relevant archdeacon and the Bishop informed of the general circumstances. This is so that the procedures in the Clergy Discipline Measure can be followed. The Archdeacon may be required to make a formal complaint under the measure
  • ·  Overseeing and if necessary administering the process for new appointments, sending out Confidential Declaration forms and reference letters and making sure any further vetting checks are made using the CRB disclosure process
  • ·  Being a member of the interviewing panel for any new appointments to represent child protection interests
  • ·  Being the link person between the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser (DSA) and the network church.The Co-ordinator may also be responsible for:
  • ·  Being the named independent person (advocate) that children are encouraged to talk to. If this is not the Co-ordinator another person or persons should be appointed for this task
  • ·  Supporting the children’s and young people’s workers through regular meetings
  • ·  Providing or arranging the provision of training in child protection matters for all those involved with children or young people.G3. Implementing or reviewing the Diocesan policy, procedures and practice guidance in the parish
  • ·  The Child Protection Co-ordinator, perhaps with a small group, should review the Child Protection arrangements each year before the AGM. A report should be provided for the meeting and the policy ratified as soon as possible by the new Board of Trustees. A sample report form is included
  • ·  Bring the House of Bishops’ policy, the Diocesan procedures and recommended good practice together with the Parish implementation document to the Board of Trustees for ratification. The incumbent and Board of Trustees should sign the Parish Policy Statement and agree a date to review the policy on an annual basis
  • ·  One copy of the Policy Statement to be placed on the church notice board, one copy to be sent to the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser for compliance records
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  • ·  If there have been areas of concern in the parish about aspects of the children and youth work use the opportunity of implementing the Child Protection Policy to make changes
  • ·  The Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser will be able to give advice or answer questions on any aspect of implementing the Diocesan Child Protection Policy
  • ·  The implementation of the House of Bishops’ Policy and the Diocesan requirements in parishes will be monitored by the diocese every three years.G4. Training requirements
  • ·  All clergy joining the Diocese must attend a diocesan child protection seminar
  • ·  They should attend a refresher training every three years
  • ·  All Readers must attend a training seminar after each appointment
  • ·  All Child Protection Co-ordinators must attend a diocesan child protectionseminar on appointment and a refresher training every three years
  • ·  All paid children and youth workers must attend a Diocesan child protectiontraining seminar on appointment and a refresher training every three years
  • ·  All other people working with children and young people must attend training every five years. This can be arranged through the parish or by the DiocesanSafeguarding Adviser
  • ·  Refresher training can be a repeat of the initial seminar or other specialisttraining or relevant conferences. A record should be kept of all training undertaken.Procedures for the safe recruitment of paid employees and volunteers including disclosure from the CRB and vetting by the ISA (after autumn 2009)

    Guidance from the Criminal Records Bureau and the Independent Safeguarding Authority tells us to treat all volunteers as if they were employees for the purpose of recruitment.

    G5. Diocesan appointments

    The appointment of clergy, readers and laypeople holding the Bishop’s licence will be administered by either the Bishops’ Offices or the Diocesan Office and are not the responsibility of the parish. Guidance on safe recruiting for these posts is held in these offices.

    G6. General information

  • ·  The Oversight Tea should agree, as part of the child protection implementation document, how new employees and volunteers will be recruited and appointed, and who will be involved in the process. It should be agreed who will be responsible for taking up references, seeking a confidential declaration and checking the identity of applicants for CRB disclosures. These tasks can be completed by different people
  • ·  Leaders of groups should inform the person managing recruitment of new employees or volunteers at an early stage so that these procedures are followed. New staff and volunteers must complete the recruitment process before starting work. A progress chart is supplied
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  • ·  It is advised that normally people should be part of the parish for at least 6 months before being asked to help with work with children, young people or vulnerable adults
  • ·  People who help in groups less than once a month should be treated as “visitors”. They should be supported and supervised by an officially appointed helper
  • ·  Young people between 14-18 may help with groups but should be supervised and supported by an adult helper who will be responsible for ensuring that good practice and the child protection procedures are followed
  • ·  People such as vergers, caretakers and mini-bus drivers may have regular contact with children and need to be part of these procedures.G7. Making an appointment
  • ·  For any position, decide on a job description, which will include a statement of the tasks and responsibilities and to whom the person will be accountable. A sample document is supplied
  • ·  Decide whether or not any new appointment requires a disclosure from the CRB. For disclosures at the standard or enhanced level there must be an expectation that the role will include regular contact with children or vulnerable adults, see the introduction to the CRB
  • ·  Ask applicants to fill in the Parish application form (see Appendix 4) which includes information about the policies required by the CRB. These policies should be made available to the applicant on request
  • ·  Seek two references including at least one that can comment on a person’s suitability to work with children or vulnerable adults. If possible, ensure that one reference is from outside the present congregation. Obtain a further reference from the incumbent of any previous church. A pro-forma letter is provided
  • ·  Ask each applicant to complete a confidential declaration form. This gives them the opportunity to declare any convictions or allegations at an early stage. It should be made clear to the applicant to whom the form should be returned and who will see any confidential information it contains. Information contained on a declaration should be discussed with the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser. The manager of the recruitment procedure should be informed when a satisfactory confidential declaration has been obtained.
  • ·  Interview the candidates. For volunteers the interview can be informal and conducted in a relaxed and inclusive manner. Nevertheless it should be focussed and cover the following areas:

o Relevant knowledge and experience
o Attitude and aptitude
o Sensitivity and behaviour towards others
o Awareness and understanding of safeguards in working with children

and young people.

  • ·  Complete the CRB and ISA process – see separate guidance
  • ·  It is the responsibility of the parish to seek evidence of criminal backgroundfor those people who have lived outside the UK. The CRB administrator, Diocesan House (01273 421021) may be able to give advice. If an equivalent certificate to CRB is not available references should be sought to cover the period spent abroad after the age of 18.
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  • ·  It is important that once all the checks have been completed and the person has been appointed that follow up action is taken:
  • ·  New volunteers are made aware and asked to adhere to the Diocesan Child Protection policy and procedures, best practice guidelines and codes of conduct.
  • ·  Training needs are established and actioned
  • ·  The roles and responsibilities of the new volunteer are signed up to – Asample job role/description is included
  • ·  A period of supervision/observation or mentoring is used to support the newvolunteer.Procedure for responding to concerns about possible abuse G8. Introduction

    As Christians, we are called to recognise the unique status and infinite worth of each human being. The Children Act 1989 emphasises the importance of children in society by introducing the principle that the welfare of the child is paramount. The Act

states that it is the duty of the Local Authority:

  • ·  To take reasonable steps to prevent children suffering ill treatment or neglect
  • ·  To share information about any child within the area who is likely to sufferharm
  • ·  To investigate where there is reasonable cause to suspect that a child issuffering or likely to suffer significant harm
  • ·  To safeguard and promote the welfare of children who are in need and theirfamilies by the provision of services.It is the duty of every Christian to be vigilant about the care of children in the congregation. Those church members who have direct contact with children are more likely than most to become aware of potential problems. Such people are typically other parents, youth workers (including leaders of uniformed organisations), clergy, head servers, children’s workers, music group leaders, choir directors and organists.

    These particular roles do not however remove the responsibility of every member of the congregation. Anyone who is worried about the behaviour of another member of the congregation or the demeanour of a child has a duty to voice those concerns to the person designated to co-ordinate child protection in the parish or organisation or directly to the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser.

    If the concerns are about a prominent member of the congregation or someone in a position of leadership, this can lead to considerable anxiety, however doing nothing could result in continuing harm to the child or other children. It is important that anyone expressing concerns should be respected and his or her anxieties taken seriously. Anyone formally hearing a complaint should keep a careful record of all conversations and all decisions and actions taken. These records should be kept in a secure place and in accordance with data protection requirements.

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Disclosures of Abuse

G9. Disclosures concerning non-church organisations

Clergy or lay-people may hear about concerns regarding their Church School or uniformed organisations. These concerns should be reported using the School’s or the uniformed organisation’s Child Protection procedures.

G10. Disclosures from a child or young person

As a church worker you may get to know your children and young people very well. They may trust you enough to be able to tell you about unhappy things that are happening – at home, at school, at church. This is both a privilege and a responsibility.

It is worth considering the following if you do find yourself in such a situation:

  • ·  Remember that the child may want the abuse to stop but still love the abuser
  • ·  The child may think that it is possible to stop the abuse without anything elsehappening
  • ·  If a child asks to talk in confidence ALWAYS tell them that that will depend onthe circumstances. It will be necessary to get other people to help if they arebeing harmed
  • ·  If it is possible, try to have another adult present whilst the child speaks, butdo not prevent the child from speaking.When you are listening to a child:
  • ·  Listen positively to what the child says and take it seriously
  • ·  Accept what is being said (this is not the same as deciding whether theallegation is true or not – others will address this later)
  • ·  Avoid leading the child or young person and keep any questions to theabsolute minimum. Ask only what is necessary to ensure a clearunderstanding of what has been said
  • ·  Be aware of interpreting what the child says, especially if they have learningor physical disabilities which affect their ability to communicate or English isnot their first language
  • ·  Reassure the child that they were right to tell
  • ·  Do not promise complete confidentiality. Explain to the child or young person“I will only tell people whose job it is to keep children safe”
  • ·  Try to explain what will happen next in a way that the child can understand
  • ·  Make careful notes (the circumstances, what the child said, what you said etc)as soon as possible, preferably within an hour. Include dates and times ofincident/recording and keep the notes safely
  • ·  Inform either the incumbent or the Child Protection Co-ordinator
  • ·  Check that an appropriate referral has been made
  • ·  Make sure support is in place for the child and seek support for yourself
  • ·  Make a record of what actions you have taken and keep in a secure place (ifcompleting the form electronically, do not save copies to the hard drive or floppy disk. Print a copy, sign and date and then delete immediately. Pass the record to Children’s Services or the Police and to the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser that day).
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You must not:

  • ·  Speak directly to the person against whom allegations have been made
  • ·  Attempt to investigate the situation yourself.If the child or young person needs immediate medical treatment, take them to hospital or telephone for an ambulance, inform doctors of concerns and ensure that they are aware that this is a child protection issue.Sharing Concerns with Parents

    Where there are concerns that the parent(s) may be responsible for or have knowledge of the abuse, sharing concerns with the parent(s) may place the child at further risk. In such cases advice must always firstly be sought from the Police or Children’s Services as to who informs the parents.

    The child’s views should also be considered in deciding whether to inform the family in some circumstances, particularly where the child is sufficiently mature to make informed judgements about the issues, and about consenting to that.

    For a further discussion about information sharing and confidentiality see section G15.

    G11. Disclosures of abuse from adults

    Adults may speak of concerns about a child or the behaviour of an adult. These should be listened to carefully and responded to. The conversation should be recorded. The adult will need to know that if it is considered that a child is suffering significant harm the information will have to be passed on whether or not the adult wishes this to happen.

    G12. Disclosures of historical abuse

    In the course of their work many ministers and those offering pastoral support in the Church will find themselves hearing disclosures from adults of abuse that happened to them when they were children.

    When such allegations are made, they should be responded to in the same way as contemporary concerns, in terms of prompt referral to Children’s Services and discussion with the Police if it appears that a criminal offence has been committed. If possible the person hearing the disclosure should establish if the adult is aware of the alleged perpetrator’s recent or current whereabouts and contact with children.

    The adult should be asked whether s/he wants a police investigation and must be reassured that the Police Child Protection Team is able and willing to undertake such work even for those adults who are vulnerable as a result of mental health or learning difficulties. Whether the Police become involved in an investigation will depend on a number of factors including the adult’s wishes and the public interest. The pastoral care of the person who has been abused should be a priority and reassurances given that, even without her/his direct involvement, all reasonable efforts will be made to look into what he/she has reported.

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Remember as adults we are all responsible for trying to ensure the safety of children and young people. We should be alive to the possibility that people who have committed sexual abuse against someone years ago could well be abusing children today.

G13. Disclosure from an abuser

People who abuse children rarely admit to what they have done. It is however possible that admissions may be made to clergy and pastoral counsellors. It is necessary to tell a person who admits an offence against a child or young person that such information cannot be kept confidential.

A priest must be clear about the status of such a conversation and make sure there is no misunderstanding about whether the seal of confession applies.

Further advice about information sharing and matters of confidentiality can be found in section G15 and in Appendix 3 of the House of Bishops’ Policy document “Protecting all God’s Children”.

Be supportive but do not seek further details. A person who gives information which could incriminate themselves, should have access to legal advice.

Explain you have a duty to pass on the information to the Police and Children’s Services for child protection purposes unless you judge that such a statement could place a child at risk of harm.

The motive for admitting what has happened may be a desire to address the problem and obtain help. The avenue which enables this to happen and protects children is the criminal justice system.

G14. Seeking advice after hearing a disclosure

It is not a church worker’s (clergy, paid or unpaid worker) responsibility to decide if the abuse has or has not occurred; they must always discuss the concern with the appropriate person. Clergy should consult with the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser; Church workers should inform their incumbent or the Child Protection Co-ordinator.

If possible a course of action should be agreed between the incumbent and the co- ordinator.

In most cases any referral to the social care agencies will be made, if appropriate, by the coordinator but in exceptional circumstances this should not prevent any other person making a referral if they think it is necessary.

It can often be the case that there is uncertainty about whether the concerns are a matter of child protection or a family in need of support and services. In any cases of doubt the circumstances should be discussed with Children’s Services who will decide which type of referral is required.

The Child Protection Co-ordinator should discuss all concerns with the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser. If the adviser is not available it is always possible to discuss

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the matter with Children’s Services. If in doubt it is always better to make a referral to the statutory agency rather than do nothing.

G15. Sharing information – government guidance

Six key points on information sharing5 for all those working with children or those needing to make decisions about making a child protection referral:

  • ·  You should explain to children, young people and families at the onset, openly and honestly what and how information will, or could be shared and why, and seek their agreement. The exception to this is where to do so would put the child, young person or others at increased risk of significant harm or an adult at risk of serious harm, or if it would undermine the prevention, detection or prosecution of a serious crime including where seeking consent might lead to interference with any potential investigation
  • ·  You must always consider the safety and welfare of the child or young person when making decisions on whether to share information about them. Where there is a concern that the child may be suffering or is at risk of suffering significant harm, the child’s safety and welfare must be the overriding consideration
  • ·  You should, where possible, respect the wishes of children, young people or families who do not consent to share information. You may still share information, if in your judgement on the facts of the case, there is sufficient need to override that lack of consent
  • ·  You should seek advice where you are in doubt, especially where your doubt relates to a concern about possible significant harm to a child or serious harm to others
  • ·  You should ensure that the information you share is accurate and up-to-date, necessary for the purpose for which you are sharing it, shared only with those people who need to see it, and shared securely
  • ·  You should always record the reasons for your decision – whether it is to share information or not.G16. Making a referralAll disclosures or allegations where the alleged offender is part of the child’s family must be referred to the appropriate assessment team of the Children’s Services.

    When the disclosure or allegation relates to a person working with children or in a position of trust in the Church the referral must be made to the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) who is responsible for managing allegations in these circumstances.

    When making the referral give the appropriate person as much detail as possible, describing the event or disclosure, as well as information about the child and family. Distinguish between fact and opinion, what is first hand knowledge and what has been heard from others. Agree who is to be told of the referral e.g. the parents and by whom they will be told. This will usually be the responsibility of the Children’s Services. The referral should be followed up with a letter, a copy of which must be sent to the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser.

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If it is decided that the concerns refer to a child in need, agree how the family will be supported.

The person directly involved with a disclosure or observation should be prepared to:

  • ·  Have further discussions with the Children’s Services and Police
  • ·  Give evidence in court if required to do so.G17. Following a referral about a person in a position of trust
    Once a concern has been identified that a child may have been harmed by a member of the Church community and a referral made to the statutory authorities, it is important to liaise closely with them during any investigation. This is always a difficult time and needs to be carefully managed. It is the responsibility of the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser to coordinate the Diocesan response, attend strategy meetings with the other agencies and interested parties and work with them during the investigation. The incumbent, or the Archdeacon in the case of clergy referrals, will be responsible in consultation with the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser for the co-ordination of support in the parish.The highest degree of confidentiality should be maintained and only the people who need to know should be informed of the circumstances. The Diocesan Director for Communications should manage all media relations.

    G18. The role of the senior strategy meeting

    A multi-agency strategy meeting is convened in any cases where the investigation of the alleged abuse could be complex or the alleged offender occupies a position of trust. The alleged offender may work in a setting where a number of children from different families are at risk or more than one institution may be involved. The organisations involved will provide background information and be involved in the plan for the investigation. In Church cases the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser and the Incumbent or Archdeacon are likely to attend. Advice on various topics will be provided including:

  • ·  Support for the alleged victim/s and alleged offender
  • ·  The possibility of suspension from normal duties
  • ·  An agreed response to any media interest.At the end of any investigation the multi-agency strategy meeting will consider:
  • ·  Whether the alleged offender might be a continuing risk to children
  • ·  The provision of a report to be used in disciplinary proceedings
  • ·  Whether a referral needs to be made to lists of barred individuals or theIndependent Safeguarding Authority (after Autumn 2009).G19. Suspension

    In all circumstances where an allegation is made relating to beneficed or licensed clergy, licensed, or accredited lay-workers, paid lay staff or volunteers, consideration must be given to whether a person should be suspended from their duties whilst the statutory agencies undertake any investigation. Suspension should be seen as a neutral act.

    Suspension allows for an individual to stand down or stand aside while matters of concern are considered. The suspension is primarily for the protection of children but

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the needs of the person themselves and their family should also be considered particularly in the light of media attention. In order to decide whether or not to suspend the person, the Bishop (or employer or manager) should seek legal advice and consult with the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser who will have taken advice from the statutory agencies involved in the multi-agency strategy meeting. This advice will assist in determining whether it is possible and appropriate to suspend the person temporarily or ask them to take leave of absence or have their duties curtailed to prevent contact with children. Decisions should always err on the side of caution. Any information provided to the individual regarding the reasons for suspension must not prejudice any subsequent investigation. A person should always be suspended if he or she is charged with a criminal offence against a child or young person.

G20. Pastoral support

During the investigation the child or young person and their family will need support. Another person will need to support the alleged offender. People involved in support should be uninvolved with the investigation or disciplinary proceedings and may be chosen from outside the diocese to ensure neutrality. The Police advise that it is important that these parties should not communicate with each other about the allegation so that evidence is not contaminated. In the case of allegations against a priest the Archdeacon will need to manage the impact of the investigation on the parish.

G21. Communications with the media

In the event of an incident all communications both within and outside the Diocese must be handled by the Diocesan Director for Communications who will consult with the Bishop and the relevant Archdeacon, the parish and the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser. Particular care should be given regarding any public statements or public prayer, which should be agreed with the Bishop. Statements for possible media use will normally be agreed at a multi-agency strategy meeting.

G22. Insurance advice

The Board of Trustees should make sure that they have adequate insurance, including Public Liability Insurance to cover all their activities both on and off site. The Council should also make sure that the policy includes Legal Protection Insurance to cover legal costs resulting from allegations made against its employees or volunteers. The Ecclesiastical Insurance Group has issued a document on child protection which states – “Ecclesiastical considers that the implementation of the House of Bishops’ Policy document by all church organisations is essential for the maintenance of liability insurance in relation to the issues it addresses”. The insurance company also expects that good practice as laid down by the Diocese will be followed as closely as possible.

The Church’s insurance company must be notified of any allegations of abuse which are likely to affect the insurance held by the parish. They should be notified once a referral has been accepted by the Children’s Services. A copy of such notification should be sent to both the Archdeacon and the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser. Advice should be sought about the insurance position and any steps needed to be taken to safeguard it. The Claims Manager will also need to be kept in touch with developments. This notification should be directed to:

The Managing Director

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Ecclesiastical Insurance Group Beaufort House
Brunswick Road
Gloucester GL1 1JZ

It should be marked Strictly Private and Confidential. Failure to notify the insurers could prejudice the cover under the insurance policy.

Parishes insured by other companies should follow a similar procedure.

Any person accused of abuse where they have the benefit of insurance should also inform their insurance company.

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G23. Checklist for those making referrals

Action

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Notes

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Information gathered and checked for Accuracy

Incumbent and CP Co-ordinator agreed on action

Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser consulted

Referral made by either parish or Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser

People in the parish who are aware of the referral

Suspension from duties considered

Media interest prepared for

Support for all concerned in place

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If referral accepted – insurers notified

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G24. Following an investigation

Occasionally, an untrue allegation may be made. It is important not to make judgements and to allow any allegation to be carefully investigated to try to ascertain the truth. Untrue allegations can be the result of some other concern or unhappiness in a child’s life. It is very important that clergy or people working with children do not put themselves in vulnerable situations.

An investigation may result in various actions. It may be shown that the person has no case to answer or they may be charged with an offence and the Crown Prosecution Service asked to consider prosecution. The person may concur with the truth of the allegation and accept a Police caution or plead guilty in court. In order for the CPS to sanction a prosecution they have to believe that there is more than a 50% chance of gaining a conviction and also that it is in the public interest to prosecute.

The multi-agency strategy meeting overseeing the investigation should be asked to provide a report which can be used in any subsequent disciplinary proceedings, for other decision making or for future reference. The report, which should be agreed with their legal advisers, should include any statements which parties have agreed can be used for this purpose, a factual account of the investigation and an assessment of any continuing risk. It is helpful if the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser can agree the terms of the report at the beginning of the investigation.

G25. Situations where there is no conviction

There are many reasons why a particular case may not come to court, but this does not necessarily mean there is no remaining concern. Even following an acquittal there may remain evidence of inappropriate or misguided behaviour that needs to be addressed. The advice of the multi-agency strategy meeting should be sought about any continuing risk to children. It may still be appropriate in some circumstances and in accordance with legal advice to continue disciplinary action.

If there remains unresolved matters of concern, either untested complaints of serious harm to a child or evidence of inappropriate behaviour by the adult, a professional risk assessment should be carried out to try to ascertain whether it is safe for the person to continue work which brings them into contact with children. Depending on the outcome of the assessment it may be necessary to introduce a regime of training and supervision or to re-deploy the person in another post.

Advice should be sought from the multi-agency strategy meeting about whether information should be passed to the Department for Children, Schools and Families, so that they can decide whether the person should be placed on the Protection of Children Act List (POCALS) and the person barred from working with children. After Autumn 2009 this decision will be made by the Independent Safeguarding Board. In the case of clergy, consideration should also be given about whether the person should be referred for inclusion on the Archbishops’ list.

G26. Re-deployment following a conviction or caution

Careful consideration should be given to the future employment or volunteering role of the person involved. They may be barred from working with children. Even if not barred it will only be in extremely exceptional circumstances, and following a

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professional risk assessment, that a person who has a conviction or caution for harming a child in a nonsexual manner should be allowed to work or be a volunteer where there is the opportunity for contact with children.

A person convicted or cautioned for any sexual offences against children should not again work with, or be a volunteer, where he or she could come into contact with children. This would include being an adult member of mixed-age activities. An agreement should be drawn up to define the relationship between the convicted person and the church community.

For people involved in pastoral or other authorised ministry, whether ordained or not, it may not be possible to provide the level of supervision required even if a particular post does not involve specific contact with children. People engaged in such a representational ministry are regarded as trustworthy and as people of integrity, and this perception can be (and has been) used by offenders to target victims. Rehabilitation to any kind of representational ministry should be approached with extreme caution, should follow a professional risk assessment and treatment programme and should be with the agreement of the local child protection agencies.

G27. Completing the process

At the end of an investigation, court case or disciplinary procedure, all those affected will need to be informed of the result and arrangements made, where appropriate, for continued support, counselling or treatment. Consideration should be given to the healing of the congregation and the support required for the person taking over the role that the offender held. The effects of child abuse can be felt for many years after the abuse itself has ended.

The Diocesan Safeguarding Group should meet and agree what lessons can be learned from the incident and ensure that any changes to procedures or good practice are implemented both at Diocesan and parish level.

In serious cases or where someone makes a complaint about the process it may be appropriate for the Bishop to ask for an independent review of the situation. This could be undertaken by an independent social worker, a neighbouring Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser or the National Child Protection Adviser. Any recommendations regarding good practice should be disseminated nationally.

G28. Survivors of abuse

The church will be involved with survivors of abuse in many ways:

  • ·  Abused children may come to the Church for help
  • ·  Adult abuse survivors may turn to the Church for help
  • ·  Some clergy were sexually abused as children, and may need the support ofcolleagues, congregations and colleagues
  • ·  Children may be abused by Christian family members
  • ·  Children may be abused by clergy or church workersEach parish should consider the fact that they almost certainly have survivors within their community and should think about ways of responding in a sympathetic and practical way. This means creating a loving environment within which healing can happen, and which may require providing access to factual information and sources
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of professional help. The Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser can help with access to counselling services if required.

Procedure for “whistle-blowing”

G29. Introduction

Every member of a congregation needs to acknowledge their individual responsibility to bring matters of concern to the attention of the incumbent, Child Protection Coordinator, Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser or a relevant agency. Although this can be difficult this is particularly important where the welfare of children may be at risk.

A colleague may be the first to recognise that something is wrong but may not feel able to express concerns feeling that this would be disloyal; he or she may fear harassment or victimisation. These feelings, however natural, must never result in a child or young person continuing to be unnecessarily at risk. Remember it is often the most vulnerable children or young people who are targeted. They need someone to safeguard their welfare.

G30. Reasons for whistle-blowing

  • ·  Each individual has a responsibility for raising concerns about unacceptable practice or behaviour
  • ·  To prevent the problem worsening or widening
  • ·  To protect or reduce risks to others
  • ·  To prevent becoming implicated themselves.G31. What stops people from whistle-blowing
  • ·  Starting a chain of events which spirals out of control
  • ·  Disrupting the work or project
  • ·  Fear of getting it wrong
  • ·  Fear of repercussions or damaging careers
  • ·  Fear of not being believed.G32. How to raise a concern
  • ·  Concerns, suspicions or uneasiness should be voiced as soon as possible. The earlier a concern is expressed the easier and sooner action can be taken
  • ·  Try to pinpoint exactly what practice is concerning; what has been heard or what has been observed
  • ·  Approach the incumbent, Child Protection Co-ordinator or the Diocesan
  • ·  Safeguarding Adviser
  • ·  If the concern is about a member of the clergy contact the DiocesanSafeguarding Adviser or the Archdeacon.
  • ·  Make sure a satisfactory response is made – don’t let matters rest
  • ·  Ideally concerns should be put in writing, outlining the background andhistory. Dates and times should be provided if possible
  • ·  It is important to provide as many facts as possible and not rely on rumour oropinion.
    The whistle-blower is not expected to prove the truth of an allegation or investigate.
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G33. What happens next

  • ·  The whistle-blower should be given information on the nature and progress of any enquiries
  • ·  The incumbent should make sure the whistle-blower is not harassed or victimised
  • ·  No action will be taken against a whistle-blower if the concern proves to be unfounded and was raised in good faith
  • ·  Malicious allegations may be considered very seriously and will be a disciplinary offence for those in employment.G34. Self reportingThere may be occasions where a church worker has a personal difficulty, perhaps a physical or mental health problem, which they know to be impinging on their professional competence. Clergy and church workers have a responsibility to discuss such a situation with the person to whom they are accountable so that professional and personal support can be offered. Whilst such reporting will remain confidential in most instances, this cannot be guaranteed where personal difficulties raise concerns about the welfare or safety of children.

    Further advice and support

    It is recognised that whistle blowing can be difficult and stressful. Advice and support is available from the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser.

    “Absolutely without fail – challenge poor practice or performance. If you ignore or collude with poor practice it makes it harder to sound the alarm when things go wrong” (reproduced with acknowledgement to “Sounding the Alarm” – Barnardos).

    Procedure for ministering to people who pose a risk to children

    G35. Introduction

    Research has indicated that a higher proportion of convicted offenders against children may be found in church congregations than in the population generally. It is therefore probable that many congregations will have people who have abused children amongst their worshippers, some of whom will be known. Not all will have committed sexual offences; some will have been guilty of neglect, physical or emotional abuse.

    The Church’s duty to minister to all imposes a particular responsibility to such people. This must not however compromise the safety of children. If a congregation is generally aware of how offenders will be treated it will be easier to deal confidentially with a specific case if it should occur.

    As well as people with convictions against children there are others whose position in a congregation may need to be carefully and sensitively considered to decide whether they pose a risk to children. This would include people who are, or have been subject to investigation by the police for a criminal offence against a child or young person, people who have been convicted of violent or sexual offences against adults including domestic violence, people involved in drug or alcohol addiction, adults with a mental disorder or special needs, which might in rare cases result in erratic behaviour.

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Where an offender (and particularly a sex offender) is known, befriended and helped by a group of volunteers to lead a fulfilled life without direct contact with children the chances of re-offending are diminished and the Church has thus an important role contributing to the prevention of child abuse.

G36. Ministering to people who pose a risk to children

When it is known that a member of the congregation poses a risk to children or young people the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser must be consulted, so that a safe way of managing their behaviour can be agreed in conjunction with the relevant statutory agencies.

Please do not take any action in advance of consulting the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser as every situation is different and there may be other legal implications.

  • ·  If the person’s victim attends the church the offender should be introduced to another congregation. Consideration must also be given to other people who have been abused in the past
  • ·  The person should not be offered or accept any official role or office in the church which gives them status or authority as a child or young person may deem that person to be trustworthy
  • ·  A formal, recorded discussion should be held with the person, explaining that a small group from the congregation will need to know the facts in order to create a safe environment for him or her. If possible the membership of the group should be agreed. Those needing to know are likely to include the clergy, Board of Trustees, Child Protection Co-ordinator and any befriending volunteers. Any children’s work co-ordinator will need to be informed so that they do not inadvertently ask the person to volunteer
  • ·  It must be made clear that no one else will be informed of the facts without the person’s knowledge and the agreement of the public protection authorities. The highest levels of confidentiality should be maintained.If the person is to be integrated or remain in the church community it will be necessary to establish clear boundaries for both the protection of the children and to lessen the possibility of the adult being wrongly accused of abuse. The Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser will prepare an agreement, which considers:
  • ·  What risk this poses to children and other vulnerable people in church and how this should be managed
  • ·  What other pastoral concerns this presents and how these might be managed
  • ·  How the parish can best respond in order to reinforce any effort the offendermay be making not to repeat their behaviour
  • ·  The level of involvement in church activities that is considered safe andacceptable and what steps will be taken to monitor this
  • ·  In the event of the agreement not being adhered to, those involved to meetand agree on what steps need to be taken.The offender should be asked to sign the agreement. The agreement should be enforced, and no manipulation allowed. If there are problems with this, seek the advice of the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser.
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The agreement should be reviewed at regular intervals with the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser. An agreement must remain in place so long as the person is a part of the congregation, whether or not their name appears on the Sex Offenders Register.

In some cases offences only come to light after many years. In such situations great sensitivity will be required. It must however be remembered that there may still be a substantial risk to children.

G37. Circles of support and accountability

This is the name for a system of structured befriending and supervision for sex offenders, usually at the point of release from prison. Many of the volunteers involved in the circles are recruited from churches although the offenders are not necessarily Christian. If a known sex offender who attends a church is also part of a “Circle of Support” they will have a specific contract with the circle as well as any parish arrangements agreed with the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser.

G38. Procedure for outside groups using church premises
The Board of Trustees must decide which groups and which activities are their responsibility. Although other groups and functions that involve children on church premises are not the Board of Trustees’s direct responsibility, there is a duty of care which means informing outside groups of the procedures that they should follow.

Booking forms

The following clause should be incorporated in any booking form for church premises for which the Board of Trustees is responsible, both for one-off bookings and regular bookings:

“You are required to ensure that children are protected at all times, by taking all reasonable steps to prevent the occurrence of any injury, loss, damage or harm. Appropriate adult supervision should be provided”.

G39. One-off bookings

Give the organiser a copy of “Keeping Children and Young People Safe in Church” pocket guide for workers with children and young people. Advise the organiser of the ratio of helpers required for the numbers of children attending. Helpers will not need to fill in declaration forms.

G40. Regular bookings

Some organisations (guides, scouts, playgroups etc) will have their own Child Protection procedures which they must follow. Other groups must follow the recommendations in the government guidance “Working Together To Safeguard Children 2006”. They could be advised to adhere to the Diocesan Child Protection procedures and recommended good practice. Hiring could be made contingent on adherence to the Diocesan policy.

Minimum requirements are:
· Safe recruitment of adults with CRB disclosures for all leaders and helpers

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  • ·  At least two workers for every group whatever the size, keeping a gender balance
  • ·  If a child or young person is alone with a worker for any reason, there must always be another adult nearby and the child must be informed where that person is
  • ·  No person under 18 should be left in charge of a group
  • ·  A register must be kept of children attending the group which includes name,address, date of birth and next of kinG41. Suggested agreements for outside groups

    A sample agreement for use with outside groups is included.

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Recommended Practice

Advice to create a safe environment for children. Whilst this is more flexible it is also the main way children are protected and should be followed as closely as possible. Changes to this section should only be made after seeking the advice of the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser. All workers with children should have access to this section.

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Practice Guidance

This collection of practice guidelines build on the recommendations provided in the previous edition of the Diocesan Policy Document “The Care and Protection of Children” and are in accordance with the Department for Children, School’s and Families “Guidance for Safer Working Practice for Adults who work with Children and Young People”.

It needs to be recognised that this guidance is offered as a support and encouragement to church workers so that they can work safely and confidently with children and young people but that it also provides a standard of practice which may be used to judge whether a person is acting inappropriately or dangerously or who may by such misconduct be deemed by a parish or the diocese to be unsuitable to work with children.

Practice guidance can never cover every situation and workers will be expected to use their judgement and common sense when required. It is expected that if actions are taken which are either not covered by this guidance or for some reason is different from this guidance the worker will communicate this fact to their line manager or Child Protection Coordinator as soon as possible. If possible a course of action should be agreed with the line manager and the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser before the event. Agreed actions should be recorded.

Y1. Working safely with children a checklist for ‘best practice’ – Be caring yet careful!

All clergy, paid employees and volunteers should always:

  • ·  Abide by the child protection policy
  • ·  Behave in a mature, respectful, safe, fair and considered manner at all times
  • ·  Provide a good example, and a ‘positive role model’ to children
  • ·  Observe other people’s right to confidentiality (unless you need to reportsomething)
  • ·  Treat all children equally; never build “special relationships” or favourindividual children, unless this is part of an agreed plan for the child
  • ·  Learn to control and discipline children without physical punishment, this mustnever be used even if they have the parent’s explicit permission for this
  • ·  Ensure that another adult is informed if a worker needs to take a child to thetoilet.
  • ·  Toilet breaks should be organised for young children. Respect the child’sprivacy
  • ·  If known in advance, a parent’s permission must be sought if a child or youngperson is to be seen on his or her own, another adult must be nearby and thechild or young person must know this
  • ·  Ensure that if possible each group has a gender balance of helpers
  • ·  Ensure that children and young people know that they can speak to anindependent advocate in the congregation, or contact “Childline”, if they needto talk to someone.
  • ·  Have the “Childline” telephone number prominently displayed (tel. 08001111).
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Clergy, paid employees and volunteers should not:

  • ·  Behave in a manner that could lead a reasonable person to question their conduct, intentions or suitability to care for other people’s children
  • ·  Touch children in a manner which is, or may be considered to be sexual, threatening, gratuitous or intimidating
  • ·  Discriminate either favourably or unfavourably towards any child
  • ·  Make arrangements to contact, communicate, or meet children outside ofapproved church activities, unless this has the prior approval of the ChildProtection Co-ordinator as well as their parent
  • ·  Develop personal or sexual relationships with children
  • ·  Use their status and standing to form or promote relationships which are of asexual nature, or which may become so with a youth member of the churchover the age of consent.
  • ·  Make inappropriate remarks or jokes of a personal, sexual, racial,discriminatory, intimidating or otherwise offensive nature either face to face orusing mobile or electronic methods
  • ·  Intentionally embarrass or humiliate children, for example by using sarcasm orhumour in an inappropriate way
  • ·  Give or receive (other than token) gifts unless agreed with the ChildProtection Coordinator
  • ·  Allow, encourage or condone children to act in an illegal, improper or unsafemanner e.g. smoking or drinking alcohol or taking drugs
  • ·  Undertake any work with children when they are not in a fit and properphysical or emotional state to do so
  • ·  Use their position to make relationships with children away from the church ortheir families
  • ·  Play rough physical or sexually provocative games
  • ·  Be sexually suggestive about a child or to a young person even in fun
  • ·  Give lifts to children or young people on their own. If this is unavoidable askthe child or young person to sit in the back of the vehicle
  • ·  Share sleeping accommodation with young people
  • ·  Invite a young person to the worker’s home alone
  • ·  Permit abusive peer activities e.g. initiation ceremonies, ridiculing, bullying
  • ·  Allow unknown adults access to children. Visitors should always beaccompanied by a known person.
  • ·  Church workers should ensure that their behaviour either in or out of thechurch activity does not compromise their position within the church.Be prepared for your colleagues to remind you if you forget any of the requirements for good practice and be prepared to help a colleague by advising them in return.

    Y2. Physical contact and child protection

    Child abuse is harm of a very serious nature so that it is unlikely that any type of physical contact in the course of children and youth work could be misconstrued as abuse.

    One of the aims of the Diocesan policy is for church groups to provide a warm, nurturing environment for children and young people whilst avoiding any

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inappropriate behaviour. All church workers must work with or within sight or hearing of another adult. They must accept that all physical contact is open to scrutiny and could be reported to the Child Protection Co-ordinator for the protection of both worker and child.

  • ·  Church workers should be aware that even well intentioned physical contact may be misconstrued by the child, an observer or by anyone to whom this action is described
  • ·  If any activity, for example bell-ringing, requires physical contact make sure that the young person and their parents are aware of this and its nature
  • ·  There must be no physical punishment of any kind nor should any sanctionridicule or humiliate a child
  • ·  Avoid physically rough games, tickling or fun fights
  • ·  Avoid unnecessary informal touching
  • ·  Avoid taking young children to the toilet, but when necessary make sureanother adult is informed or organise a toilet break for the whole group. Always encourage children, where possible, to undertake self-care tasks independently
  • ·  Young children may sometimes need comforting, make sure they are responded to warmly, in an appropriate way for the age of the child but with other adults around
  • ·  First aid should be administered with others around
  • ·  Very occasionally it may be necessary to restrain a child or young person whois harming him/herself or others. Use the least possible force in the minimum amount of time and inform the parents as soon as possible. All such incidents should be recorded and the information given to the Child Protection Co- ordinator
  • ·  All physical contact should be an appropriate response to the child’s needs not the needs of the adult. Colleagues must be prepared to support each other and act or speak out if they think any adult is behaving inappropriately.Y3. Inappropriate behaviour by children towards adultsChildren or young people can sometimes initiate physical contact with an adult or seek to develop a personal relationship. They may have a ‘crush’ or may act inappropriately following previous abusive experiences. The behaviour may be a “cry for help”. Any such situation should be handled sensitively.
  • ·  If an adult feels uncomfortable about a child or young person’s behaviour they must:
  • ·  (If it is a young child) remove them gently and at an appropriate time from close physical contact
  • ·  Make it clear to the child or young person, with sensitivity, that their language or behaviour is inappropriate
  • ·  Tell another adult; a clergy colleague, the parish priest or the Child Protection Co-ordinator. Agree with the colleague what measures should be taken to prevent a reoccurrence
  • ·  Record the incident in case accusations are made in the future. Sign and date the record and hand it to the Child Protection Co-ordinator.
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Y4. Anti-bullying

With a view to the prevention of bullying, each group/organisation must adopt an antibullying policy and ensure that it is adhered to and made available. A sample policy is included in the appendices.

Y5. Young leaders (under 18)

Definition

A young leader is a person, between 14 and 18 years of age who will not have had a Criminal Record Bureau check by virtue of their age and who has expressed an interest in leading activities with other young people. These activities might include youth groups, prayer groups and retreats or weekend activities.

Principles for working with young leaders

These principles are drawn from the scouting movement and football association as they reflect best practice that has evolved over a number of years of working with young people in a variety of settings.

  • ·  Under the Children Act 1989 young people do not become adults until their 18th birthday
  • ·  Young leaders should not be put in a position of being solely responsible for a group or activity involving other young people. An adult leader should always be present
  • ·  Young leaders should not take part in any residential or potentially hazardous activities without their parent or carer’s permission
  • ·  Young leaders should not be permitted to share accommodation with either the adult leaders or the young people in the group or activity in which they work on residential outings or holidays
  • ·  Young leaders should be given child protection training to ensure that they know what to do if child abuse is suspected, if a child discloses abuse or if the behaviour of an adult or another young person causes concern
  • ·  They should be made aware of the need to avoid situations that could affect relationships within the group in which they are working (e.g. a relationship between a young leader and a youth member)
  • ·  With the right support and opportunities young leaders can be a valuable part of the leadership team and have the potential to be the adult leaders of the future.Y6. A safe environment for children’s activitiesThere is a wide range of activities where children and young people may be involved in Church. These include regular or one of events, usually indoors such as youth groups, junior church and charity events, non-residential day trips and outings and residential events such as holidays, camps retreats and pilgrimages.

    In all cases one person should be designated as a leader for the activity and take overall responsibility for planning, supervision and conduct. This responsibility should include undertaking a risk assessment for the activity.

    The leader should ensure that all other adults involved have been properly recruited and establish with them an agreed way of working. When activities take place during

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church services the parents of the children will usually be close by, so written consent is not needed.

When activities take place on church premises outside of service times or in premises separate from the main body of the church, parents must sign a registration form setting out the arrangements for the activity and for the safe collection or return home of the children at the end of the activity. Additional parental consent will be required for any outings or holidays not specified in the registration form.

A register should be kept of meetings, the children/young people and adults present and a brief record of the activities undertaken. A sample report form is included.
An incident report form should be completed within 24 hours of an accident or incident.

NB: An accident is defined as “An unplanned, unforeseen, unexpected and unintended event, which results in injury to people or damage to property.” An incident is more general and is an event that has an undesirable consequence be it involving physical impact or a “near miss.” A sample incident report form is included.

Y7. Formal registration of children’s groups

Any group that includes children who are under 8 years old and that meets regularly for more than two hours in any one day, e.g. a youth group, and for more than fourteen days a year, e.g. a holiday club, must register their group with OFSTED. Please contact the local branch of OFSTED for advice. Registration includes standards for workers as well as premises, and tries to ensure that children do not come into contact with unsuitable people who may also be using the premises. A registration fee is payable annually, and inspections are made.

For other groups that include children who are under 8 years old and meet for more than two hours in any one day but for less than fourteen days a year (e.g. a holiday club) there is a requirement to request an exemption from Ofsted at least 14 days before the group or activity is due to start.

An exemption registration form is available to download from the Ofsted website at

http://www.ofsted.gov .uk/Ofsted-home/Forms-and-guidance/Browse-allby/ Other/General/Exemption-notification-form

Many church groups will not need to be registered; nevertheless, it is advisable to adhere to the standards as closely as possible. These are set out below.

Y8. Staffing levels

The minimum required staffing levels for children’s groups are given below. More help will be required if children are being taken out or undertaking physical activities. 0-2 years – 1leader/helper for every 3 children 1:3
2-3 years – 1leader/helper for every 4 children 1:4
3-8 years – 1leader/helper for every 8 children 1:8
Over 8 years – 1leader/helper for the first 8 children and then one extra leader/helper for every extra 12 children.

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Each group should have at least 2 adults and it is recommended that a gender balance is maintained.

  • ·  If groups are in the same room, or adjoining rooms with doors open, one person per group is allowed
  • ·  Young people between 14-18 may help with groups but should be supervised by an adult helper who will be responsible for ensuring that good practice and the child protection procedures are followed. Young people of this age will not be counted as adults in calculating staffing levels
  • ·  Adults asked to help on a very occasional basis may be seen as visitors but must be responsible to an appointed worker. If they become part of a regular rota once a month or more they should become part of the team and be properly appointed using the recruitment procedure in this document.Y9. Individual tuitionPeople giving individual tuition on church premises must make sure that another adult is present or nearby and that the child or young person is aware of the other person’s presence.

    Y10. Premises and other health and safety advice

  • ·  Meeting places should be warm, well lit and well ventilated. They should be kept clean and free of clutter. Electric sockets should be covered
  • ·  Toilets and hand basins should be easily available. Hygienic drying facilities should be provided
  • ·  There should be enough space available for the intended activity
  • ·  If food is regularly prepared for children on the premises, the facilities willneed to be checked by the Environmental Health Officer and a “FoodHandling and Hygiene
  • ·  Certificate” acquired. Children’s packed lunches should be kept refrigerated.Drinks should always be available. NB: YES regularly run Food Handling and Hygiene courses in the Diocese. For further Information check the YES website at www.yesonthenet.org.uk/training/goodpractice/
  • ·  Groups must have access to a phone in order to call for help if necessary
  • ·  Adults should be aware of the fire procedures. Fire extinguishers should beregularly checked and smoke detectors fitted throughout the premises. A firedrill should be carried out regularly
  • ·  No smoking should be permitted in the areas where there are children
  • ·  Alcohol and illegal drugs must not be used by those having children andyoung people in their care or at a time that could affect their care (see thedrug and alcohol guidance in this document).
  • ·  Unaccompanied children and young people should not walk to or from yourpremises along dark or badly lit paths
  • ·  Workers should be encouraged to attend first aid training. A list of first aidersin the parish should be compiled and kept available. All accidents must be recorded in the accident book. see www.sja.org.uk for advice about first aid courses. It is recommended that the ‘emergency and basic first aid’ course is attended by children’s workers. NB: YES also run first aid courses with the help of St John’s Ambulance. For further Information check the YES website at www.yesonthenet.org.uk/training/goodpractice/

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· The Board of Trustees should be responsible for an annual safety audit of the premises.

Y11. First aid

All premises used by children should have a first aid kit, the contents of which should be stored in a waterproof container and be clearly marked. Each group should designate one worker to check the contacts regularly. All workers should be encouraged to have some first aid knowledge. (See above). A first aid book should be kept, all treatment should be written up in the book and a note made that the parents have been informed.

A suggested minimum for a First Aid kit: 2 x small wound dressing
1 x large wound dressing
1 x eye pad

4 x triangular bandages
2 x non-stick dressing 5cm x 5cm
2 x non-stick dressing 10cm x 10cm
1 reel of low allergy adhesive tape
4 x safety pins
5 x pairs of disposable latex gloves
2 x conforming bandages 6cm
1 x resuscitation shield
20 x wrapped adhesive dressings (plasters)
2 x crepe bandages 5cm
1 x disposable apron
1 x sealed eyewash
1 x Emergency aid card
4 x individually wrapped cleaning wipes (non-alcoholic) An accident report book

HIV and AIDS

Confidentiality regarding a child’s HIV status should always be maintained. Good hygiene should ALWAYS be practised with all children and young people. Disposable latex gloves and a disposable apron should always be used when dealing with broken skin, body fluids and faeces.

Y12. Children and young people with special needs

  • ·  Welcome children and young people with special needs to the group
  • ·  The premises and toilets should be accessible to people with disabilities
  • ·  Ask the parent about how best to meet the child’s special needs, and do notsee this as the responsibility only of the child’s parent
  • ·  If premises are being designed or refurbished, it is now a legal requirement tomake reasonable adjustments to meet the possible special needs of future children and adults; advice is available.Y13. Taking children and young people out

    No child under the age of 8 can be taken away on residential activities without being accompanied by his or her parent or guardian.

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Parental consent

Each child or young person under the age of 18 (unless they are over 16 and living away from home or married) must have the written consent of his or her parent or guardian; this gives authority to the person named as responsible for the activity to take the young person away and to act as a careful parent would. It does not transfer parental responsibility.

Parental consent forms should clearly set out the activities, risks and safety measures that will be adopted. In an emergency, while every attempt should be made to contact a parent, this should not delay seeking medical treatment. The group leader should take the consent forms with them on the trip.

Information for parents

It is important that parents should have full information before giving consent. This should include:

  • ·  Aims and objectives of the event or activity
  • ·  Date of the event and its duration
  • ·  Details of venue including arrangements for accommodation and supervision
  • ·  Travel arrangements
  • ·  Name of group leader and contact numbers
  • ·  Information about financial, medical and insurance arrangements
  • ·  It may be helpful to hold a briefing session for parents before the event.Preparing for the eventThe designated leader should:
  • ·  Make sure that insurance is adequate for the activities planned, especially anyhazardous activities
  • ·  Prepare the programme and as appropriate visit all venues in advance tocheck for suitability and potential problems and in the case of a residential venue ensure that the premises has a current building certificate and fire certificate
  • ·  Check on the venue’s own policies to ensure they can be complied with
  • ·  Ensure that any instructors or workshop leaders within the group or at theevent venue are suitably qualified for specialist activities
  • ·  On arrival at the venue, establish a leader’s base and ensure the childrenknow where the base is, to which they can return to if lost or in trouble
  • ·  Ensure that all leaders have access to a full list of children/young people andleaders attending the event in case a roll call is required
  • ·  Ensure that a named person back in the home area has the names andaddresses of everyone both adults and children, who are on the trip. In the event of an incident or accident the named person will be responsible for speedily contacting the parents. This person’s name and contact details should be given to the parents and they should be available during the time that the group is away. This person should have the itinerary and be aware of the plans – estimated time of arrival at the destination, estimated time of return back to the church etc.Health and safety

    There must be a designated leader who will oversee health and safety issues.

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  • ·  He or she must:
  • ·  Ensure a risk assessment appropriate to the planned event is carried out priorto the event taking place. Where appropriate, this should include obtaining a copy of the event venue’s own risk assessment. Transport and first aid provision should form part of the risk assessment
  • ·  Ensure that all leaders have a briefing prior to the event, covering the health and safety policy, supervision, child protection and transport policies.
  • ·  A risk assessment pro-forma and guidelines on risk assessment can be found in the appendices at the back of this manualSpecialist activitiesSpecialist activities (e.g. abseiling, swimming, canoeing etc) must always take place under the supervision of suitably qualified staff and explored in the risk assessment. The activity provider is responsible for the safe running of an activity whilst the event leader and other leaders retain responsibility for children and young people at all times during adventure activities, even when the group is under instruction by a member of the provider’s staff.

    Y14. Guidelines for transporting children by private car

  • ·  Children and young people should not be taken out with transport without the prior consent of the parents
  • ·  Unless the Board of Trustees makes a specific exception, all those who drive children on church organised activities should be over 25 years of age and should have held a full driving licence for over two years
  • ·  All cars that carry children should be comprehensively insured. The insured person should make sure that their insurance covers the giving of lifts during church activities
  • ·  All cars that carry children should be clean and in a road worthy condition
  • ·  All children must wear suitable seat belts. If there are no seat belts childrenshould not be carried. Children under 135cms in height must have theappropriate car seat or booster seat
  • ·  At no time should the number of children in a car exceed the usual passengernumber
  • ·  If a child is known to have a disability or special need, consideration should begiven whether to have a non-driving adult in the car. This adult should sit inthe back, behind the driver, with the child in the seat beside him or her
  • ·  Any driver who has an endorsement of 6 points or more on their licenceshould inform the Child Protection Co-ordinator
  • ·  Any driver who has an “unspent” conviction for a drink driving offence or forDangerous Driving or Racing on the Highway should not transport children.
  • ·  If in an emergency a driver has to transport one child on his or her own, thechild must sit in the back of the car. Please record every unexpected lift To ensure that these guidelines are adhered to it would be appropriate to get a signed undertaking, covering the above issues, from those people who are prepared to transport children in their cars.Accessibility

    If any of the group uses a wheelchair, the event leader must ensure that transport used has appropriate access and securing facilities. It may be appropriate to use

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portable ramps. Further information can be obtained from: Department of Transport, Local Government and the Regions (DTLR).

Use of own minibus

Some parishes use their own minibuses for short frequent journeys and sometimes for longer trips. Minibuses have a maximum capacity of 16 seated passengers plus the driver. They must comply with the various regulations about construction and fittings. A forward facing seat belt must be provided for each child. An escort must always be taken in the minibus.

All drivers of minibuses (9-16 passenger seats) are required to hold a valid driving license showing either Group A on an old style UK license or Category B and D or D1 on a new EC style license issued in any EU Country.

Drivers who passed the car test (Category B) after 1 January 1997 and who wish to drive a minibus are required to take a further statutory driving test for vehicles in Category D or D1. However, certain drivers who passed the car test (Category B) after 1 January 1997 are permitted to drive a vehicle in Category D1 (minibuses) without the need for a further test so long as the following conditions are met:

  • ·  A full driving license has been held for at least two years
  • ·  The driver is aged 21 years or over
  • ·  The driver receives no payment (or any other consideration) other than out ofpocket expenses (i.e. they are a volunteer)
  • ·  The vehicle is driven for social purposes only
  • ·  There is no trailer attached
  • ·  The maximum authorised mass (mam) of the vehicle does not exceed 3.5tonnes, or if fitted with specialised equipment used for disabled passengers, does not exceed 4.25 tonnes.Minibus maintenance

    Pre-use inspections

    Prior to each driver using the vehicle for the first time, on each day of operation, the vehicle should be inspected to ensure that all obvious safety critical items are in a satisfactory condition, and in full working order. A report book should be completed after each daily inspection and where appropriate, repairs initiated before the minibus is driven.

    Nil-defect reporting

    Drivers must have the provision to formally report, in writing, any defect that has occurred with the vehicle on each individual journey. A competent person must be assigned to receive and act upon these reports.

    Vehicle maintenance

    Your minibus must be regularly inspected and maintained by professional vehicle technicians. A planned maintenance schedule should be drawn up with a contractor.

    Hiring Vehicles

    The event leader is responsible for ensuring that coaches and buses are hired from a reputable company. Professional operators of buses and coaches are legally

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required to be licensed. The event leaders must ensure that the operators have the appropriate public service vehicle (PSV) operators’ licence.

When booking transport, the event leader should ensure that seat belts are available for children and young people. All minibuses and coaches which carry groups of 3 or more children aged between 3 and 16 years inclusive must be fitted with a seat belt for each child. The seats must face forward and seat restraints must comply with legal requirements.

Further information can be obtained from: Department of Transport
Great Minster House
76 Marsham Street

London SW1P 4DR

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Law on seat belts – from RoSPA

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Front Seat

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Rear Seat

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Who is responsible

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Driver

Seat belt MUST be worn if available

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Driver

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Child up to 3 years

Correct child restraint MUST be used

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Correct child restraint MUST be used. If one is not available in a taxi, then the child may travel unrestrained

Driver

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Child from 3rd birthday up to either 135cms or 12 years old

Correct child restraint MUST be used

Where seat belts fitted, correct child restraint MUST be used. MUST use adult belt if the correct child restraint is not available in three scenarios:

  • ·  In a licensed taxi/PHV
  • ·  Over a short distance for reasonof unexpected necessity
  • ·  Two occupied child restraintsprevent fitment of a third.
    In addition, a child 3 and over may travel unrestrained in the rear seat of a vehicle if seat belts are not available

Driver

Child over 135cms or 12 to 13 years old

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Seat beat MUST be worn if available

Seat belt MUST be worn if available

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Driver

Adult passengers (i.e. 14 years and over)

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Seat beat MUST be worn if available

Seat belt MUST be worn if available

Passenger

(See www.childcarseats.org.uk for more information about suitable restraints).

Y15. Additional guidelines for residential events for children and young people

Following Department for Children, Schools and Families (previously DfES) guidance, no child under the age of 8 can be taken away on residential activities without its parent or guardian.

Overnight arrangements

· Boys and girls must have separate sleeping and washing facilities, which are private to them

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  • ·  Mixed groups must have adults of both sexes involved. Adults should have separate accommodation but in close proximity to the young people
  • ·  All children should be made aware of where the leaders base is and where the designated leader overseeing medical issues sleeps in case there is an emergency during the night
  • ·  It must be impressed on children that they should not hesitate to go to the leaders base in case of emergency. If in doubt, they should go anyway
  • ·  Extra leaders should be assigned to be on duty on the first and last night and should be led by experienced leaders anticipating first and last night problems
  • ·  Duty leaders and room supervisors must ensure that they have access to children and young persons medical records and parental consent forms.Y16. Sleeping on church premisesChurches sometimes arrange sleepovers for children or church premises may be used during pilgrimages or missions for example. The guidance for taking children away must be followed as closely as possible.

    The venue must be suitable, have a kitchen available and washing facilities. There must be separate sleeping toilet and washing facilities for adults and young people. When part of the activity is for young people to remain together separate sleeping areas should be organised for girls and boys. Likewise separate washing and toileting should be provided or different times for washing arranged so that there is some privacy.

    Enough adults should be present, at least two, male and female, to ensure adequate supervision. Young people under the age of 18 must not be left alone overnight. Depending on the event it may be necessary to ensure a rota of awake adults during the night or at least until all the youngsters have settled down. All leaders and helpers must be (CRB) checked before they can help at a sleepover.

    Great care must be taken to ensure the safety of the young people from the risk of fire:

  • ·  The external entrance to the building must be kept clear in case of access for emergency services
  • ·  The passageways/corridors should be kept clear
  • ·  There should be two separate routes out from the sleeping accommodation
  • ·  All exit routes should be clearly marked
  • ·  It must be possible to open all final exit doors without a key
  • ·  Prohibit the use of naked flames, candles and smoking
  • ·  All internal doors should be kept closed at night to prevent the spread ofsmoke or fire
  • ·  Portable fires should be placed in safe positions and turned off at night
  • ·  All adults should have access to a torch and a telephone
  • ·  A list of those present should be hung up near the main exit door. Everyoneshould know where outside to assemble and a roll call completed
  • ·  Anyone discovering a fire should raise the alarm by shouting FIRE
  • ·  The fire service should be called to all fires. Use the 999 facility
  • ·  Adults should know where to locate fire fighting equipment and how it isoperated. This equipment should only be used if safe to do so
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· Leaders and young people should have a short fire drill and information on arrival.

Y17. Guidelines for holiday clubs and missions
These are situations when there are likely to be extra helpers for part or all of the activity:

  • ·  Plan the activity carefully. If in the course of one year several events for under 8 year olds, extend over more than 2 hours for more than 14 days there is a requirement for the activity to be registered with OFSTED
  • ·  Ensure that all the usual health and safety recommendations are in place
  • ·  Make sure there are enough helpers for all the activities
  • ·  If there are many new helpers divide them into teams ensuring that there is anexperienced, properly appointed leader responsible for each team. Everyhelper should go through the proper recruitment process.
  • ·  If using volunteers from other churches make sure they have complied withthat church’s child protection procedures and have been safely recruited
  • ·  Give all helpers a copy of the pocket guide for workers with children “KeepingChildren and Young People Safe in Church” (see separate document)
  • ·  Ask the children’s parents to fill in a consent form to cover all the activitiesSometimes an outside organisation is used for a youth event, or a mission. It is the responsibility of the Church Council to ensure that the organisation is bone fide, has its own child protection procedures and is properly accountable. Contact the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser or Diocesan Youth Adviser for information or advice (see Appendix 13 for a form to use in these circumstances).Y18. Mixed age groups in churches and child protection

    One of the positive things that the church can offer is a place where young and old, children and adults, can be together, including worship and learning about the faith together. Children have the opportunity to get to know adults in a shared activity; perhaps singing, making music, serving, bell ringing, acting together, study groups or parish weekends

    .
    When these activities include children without their parents or carers being present, it is the responsibility of the Board of Trustees or equivalent body to make sure that these children are cared for, within health, safety and child protection guidelines. Experience has shown that mixed age groups are vulnerable to infiltration by people seeking to harm children. The opportunity for regular informal contact can enable an offender or potential offender to gain the trust of a child or young person enabling them to move on to offend. With clear procedures in place it will give confidence to parents that their children and young people are suitably protected when involved in a mixed age group activity.

    Principles for mixed age activities

  • ·  Mixed age activities must have designated children’s leaders/chaperones who have been appointed in accordance with the recruitment procedures in this document.
  • ·  There should be sufficient designated children’s leaders/chaperones to ensure a proper level of supervision of the children and young people.
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  • ·  All adults in mixed age group activities should be advised of safeguarding issues and good practice associated with activities in mixed age groups.
  • ·  If these Principles are followed then only the designated children’s leaders/chaperones in the group will require CRB checks.Implementing the policy
  • ·  Mixed age groups should identify who their designated children’s leaders/chaperones should be, including the number of designated children’s leaders/chaperones required to ensure an adequate level of supervision of the children/young people in the group
  • ·  Organists, choir masters, tower captains and bell ringing trainers should always be appointed as children’s leaders if there are or are likely to be children for whom they are responsible
  • ·  There must always be a minimum of two designated children’s leaders/chaperones present when children or young people are being taught or during rehearsals
  • ·  Parents must sign a consent form which sets out the arrangements for the activity e.g. arrangements for weddings, arrangements for dropping off and collecting, what, if any, physical contact will be needed during training
  • ·  A register of children and young people under 18 years must be kept by the leader of the activity
  • ·  Safety must be the top priority in the bell tower or organ loft. Those responsible must be aware of the insurance requirements for the activity
  • ·  The leader of the activity should make sure that everyone knows what to do if child abuse is suspected, if a child discloses abuse or if the behaviour of an adult causes concern. These adults should be asked to agree and sign up to good practice guidelines.These are the main ways that children are protected. Guidelines are provided in this document and also by various interest groups for example the Royal School of Church Music, or Central Council of Church Bell Ringers. These guidelines should include:
  • ·  Not arranging to meet children outside the group without their parent’s permission
  • ·  Not giving extra tuition in your own home
  • ·  Not giving lifts to a child on their own or without the parent’s permission.Adults who have been convicted of a sexual offence against a child or young person will not be able to take part in church activities involving children.Y19. Private tuition on church premises

    If church premises are used for individual tuition, the Board of Trustees must be aware of and approve the arrangements. Another adult should be present or nearby and the child or young person should be made aware of the other person’s presence. Additional guidance, for example from the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers, the incorporated Society of Musicians, or the Royal School of Church Music, should be obtained and followed as applicable.

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Y20. Home visits

Make sure that any home visits to children and young people are made with the agreement of the person to whom the worker is accountable. A record should be kept of all such visits.

Y21. Seeing young people on their own as a “befriender”, “listener” or “counsellor” in a youth camp or parish setting
Sometimes it is important to give young people time ‘one-to-one’. This should only be on an occasional basis with the prior consent of parents and the person to whom the worker is accountable. In an emergency, if possible, make sure another adult is aware and the young person knows where another adult is.

Guidelines

  • ·  Be open, available and relaxed
  • ·  Listen before you speak
  • ·  Avoid putting any pressure on the person
  • ·  Remember none of us have all the answers
  • ·  Help the person decide what they want to do
  • ·  Be part of a team with a trained co-ordinator who gives supervision
  • ·  Use other members of the team to explore general issues further
  • ·  Always meet in an open area where others are around but not too close
  • ·  In exceptional circumstances, if a person is distressed and more privacy isneeded, use a separate room after telling another adult about the arrangements. Make sure that the young person knows where the nearest adult is
  • ·  Preferably women should advise females, and men advise males
  • ·  Keep a record of who is spoken to (not the content unless agreed with theperson) in case follow up is needed. Sign, date and time the notes and handthem to the coordinator
  • ·  If a young person is distressed they should be entrusted to another adult atthe end of the session
  • ·  If a situation is encountered where the listener feels uncomfortable theyshould speak to the co-ordinator as soon as possible.Confidentiality

    At the first meeting, explain that the conversation will be confidential unless there are exceptional circumstances. If the person is being harmed themselves, if they are harming others, or if they know that a child or young person is being harmed, the information will have to be passed on. The person will be told what will be done and how they will be supported if they need to talk to someone else. In these circumstances always make a written record, sign, date and time, and follow your child protection procedures.

    No one should see a child or young person on their own on a regular basis unless they are professionally trained counsellors, properly appointed and vetted, and being professionally supervised.

    Y22. Use of own home

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Many church workers use their own homes during their ministry, perhaps for counselling or a bible study group. Any activity which includes under 18 year olds when their parents are not present are subject to the child protection procedures:

  • ·  Rooms used for church activities should be checked for physical hazards
  • ·  Rooms should be clean and hygienic
  • ·  Bedrooms should not be used in any circumstances
  • ·  Two adult workers should be present from before the first child arrives untilafter the last one leaves.Y23. Unaccompanied children

    Children may begin attending church services or church activities without their parent’s knowledge.

  • ·  Welcome the children and try to establish whether their parents are aware of where they are
  • ·  Try to discover when they are due home and encourage them to keep to that arrangement
  • ·  If possible ring the parents or get the young person to ring to gain the parents’ consent to the child remaining
  • ·  Complete a registration form as much as possible
  • ·  Make sure a responsible adult takes care of the child – this is particularlyimportant during public worship where unknown adults may attend andattempt to befriend the child
  • ·  Give the child information about the church service/activity to take home. Thisinformation should include contact details so that the parent can get in touch
  • ·  Try and include the child with members of the same age
  • ·  If the child comes regularly, try to establish contact with the parents
  • ·  Do not take the child on outings or transport them without the parent’sconsent.Y24. Communicating electronically and the Internet

    Communication between children and adults, by whatever method, should always take place within clear and explicit boundaries. This includes the wider use of technology such as mobile phones, text messaging, emails, digital cameras, videos, web-cams, websites and blogs.

    The risks presented by developments in modern technology are becoming increasingly recognised. Adults who seek to harm children have been known to use text messaging and Internet chat rooms to “groom” children. This area is now specifically addressed by the Sexual Offences Act 2003.

    Mobile phones

    Short Message Service (SMS) messaging is a quick and easy way to communicate with others and is a popular and often preferred means of communication with young people. It is necessary to be aware that intimidating, bullying, or even abusive messages can be discreetly sent by text. Information sent in this way, even where well meaning, could be misinterpreted.

    Adult leaders must consider whether it is necessary and appropriate to hold the mobile phone numbers of children. The general principle is that all communications

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with young people should be open, transparent and appropriate to the nature of the relationship. In the first instance contact should always be made at the phone number the parent has provided on the child’s behalf. Good practice would include agreeing with young people and parents what kind of information will be communicated directly to young people by text message. This information should only be “need to know” information such as the last minute cancellation of a meeting/activity or a change of venue. Remember that text messaging is rarely an appropriate response to a child or young person in a crisis situation or at risk of harm. It should only be used as a last resort when other forms of communication are not possible.

The following good practice is also required:

  • ·  The mobile phone numbers and email addresses of young people will becarefully stored (in accordance with data protection principles) and access willonly be provided to those who need access for a legitimate reason
  • ·  Adult leaders must never engage in personal or sensitive communicationswith children via text messages, email or other Internet or web based communication channels.Camera phones

    There have already been a number of cases where young people have been placed at risk as a result of the ability to discreetly record and transit images through mobile phones. The use of mobile phones in this way can be very difficult to monitor. The procedure for the use of photographs, film and video should be observed in relation to the use of mobile phones as cameras/videos. Particular care is required in areas where personal privacy is important e.g. toilet and sleeping quarters. No photographs or video footage should ever be permitted in such areas of personal privacy.

    All concerns about the inappropriate use of mobile phones should be dealt with in line with the procedures for responding to concerns about child abuse in this document. This may include the concerns being reported to the Police.

    Use of shared computers

    Ensure that all shared computers have a different password for all users so that they cannot be accessed secretly.

    Internet guidelines for children and young people

  • ·  Be Net smart
  • ·  Never tell anyone you meet on the Internet your home address, yourtelephone number, or your school’s name unless your parent or carerspecifically gives you -permission
  • ·  Never send anyone your picture, credit card, bank details, or anything elsewithout first checking with your parent or carer
  • ·  Never give your password to anyone, even a best friend
  • ·  Never arrange to meet anyone in person without first agreeing it with yourparent or carer, and get them to come along to the first meeting, which should always be in a public place
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  • ·  Never hang around in a chat room or in a conference if someone says or writes something which makes you feel uncomfortable or worried, and always report it to your parent or carer
  • ·  Never respond to nasty, suggestive, or rude emails or postings in Usenet Groups
  • ·  If you see something you do not like (e.g. bad language or distasteful pictures) then move on or click ‘back’. If you are still concerned talk to your parent or carer
  • ·  Always remember if someone makes you an offer which seems too good to be true, it probably is.These latter guidelines for children and young people are adapted from the NCH paper ‘Children on the Net: Opportunities and Hazards’ (1998). NCH remains one of the most useful sources for the latest information on Internet safety for children and young people.Online Safety Commandments
  • ·  Remember, people may not be who, or how old they say they are
  • ·  Never disclose identifying details
  • ·  Only MSN with people already known in the real world
  • ·  Never reply to cyber-bullying, block the sender, save the evidence, and tell atrusted adult
  • ·  Do not spend time on websites that make you feel bad about yourself
  • ·  Set social networking profiles to “private” and be careful who is added as a“friend”
  • ·  Set Internet security settings as high possible
  • ·  Never do anything online that could jeopardise your education or your career,or lead to a criminal record
  • ·  Think of yourself as a role model, what might happen if a much younger childsaw your on-line profile
  • ·  Never respond to spam emails, dubious competitions or chain letters
  • ·  Do not spend too much time online, have “real-world” friends and interests too
  • ·  Pray regularly that God will bless and protect your time on lineFrom Nicola David ‘World of danger behind the bedroom door’ Church Times 22 February 2008. Nicola David is the author of Staying Safe Online, Grove Books 2007.Y25. Taking and publishing photographs including websites 1

    Taking and publishing photographs of children is usually enjoyed by children and parents and can bring good publicity, but there are some important issues to note. The issues are the same for still photographs or films, and regardless of the particular technology used. For convenience they are all referred to as images. Images count as personal data under the Data Protection Act 1998, and therefore the eight principles of the Act apply. It is therefore important that the consent of the children and their parents is obtained for the taking and use of images.

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Do not take pictures of children without another adult present. Those taking photographs need to bear in mind that parents and carers may have good reasons for refusing consent, for example:

  • ·  If individual children are identified, it would be possible for paedophiles to use them to target prospective victims
  • ·  Some children may have been subject to disputed custody matters, be in Local Authority care, adopted or they may be subject to a witness protection scheme, and their whereabouts should not be too widely known. Parents and carers of the affected children will know this and will appropriately withhold consent without necessarily giving the reason
  • ·  Photographs taken using digital cameras can be manipulated for child pornography, which is a growing problem on the Internet. This is particularly relevant if children are scantily dressed.Good practice is therefore as follows:
  • ·  Obtain consent from parents and children before taking images. Consentneed not be in writing if it is not proposed to publish the pictures in any way, but if they are going to be posted up, used in a newspaper or magazine (including the Diocesan or parish newspapers and magazines), or put on the Internet, then a specific consent should be obtained. Since images are usually taken in the context of a specific activity for which parental consent is sought, the simplest way of dealing with this is to add a suitable wording to the parental consent form.
  • ·  If the image is to be published, avoid naming the child
  • ·  If the child is named, avoid using their image
  • ·  If children are scantily dressed, e.g. for swimming, then:o Focus on the activity rather than a particular child o Avoid full face and body shots
    o Consider the age of the children involved
  • ·  Be clear about whether the image is to be retained for further use
  • ·  Store the image securely.It is necessary to exercise common sense in the application of these guidelines in the case of a general photograph of a public event, such as a church fete, where no individual or group of people is the focus. It would not be practicable to obtain the prior consent of everyone concerned, nor is this required by data protection law. It is still appropriate to consider carefully where and how such photographs should be displayed.Schools, including church schools, will have their own policies which apply to children on school premises, or engaged in school sponsored activities. The Department for Children, Schools and Families also publishes advice on this issue, available on their website

    .
    Newspapers and other print media are bound by the Press Complaints Commission Code of Practice, of which the latest version was issued 1 June 2004. Legitimate journalism is a ‘special purpose’ under the Data Protection Act, which exempts it from the requirement of security, but there are numerous restrictions on photographing children. These are not likely to be relevant to church use but advice if needed should be obtained from the Diocesan Communications Department.

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Y26. Guidance on drugs and alcohol Purpose

To provide workers with a clear policy and a practical framework to enable them to work with young people in a positive, drug free, environment.

Suggested Parish policy statement on drugs and alcohol

  • ·  This parish does not condone the misuse of drugs or alcohol nor their illegal supply
  • ·  This parish will work pro-actively with young people to enable them to make informed decisions about drug and alcohol use
  • ·  The welfare of young people must be paramount at all times
  • ·  The youth and children’s workers will observe the current legal framework andact within it
  • ·  Youth and children’s workers will not take illegal substances and will makesure that they are not under the influence of legal drugs or alcohol whilst working with and responsible for children or young people.Confidentiality

    The parish aims to protect the young person’s right to privacy, however unconditional confidentiality cannot be guaranteed where the young person’s actions or behaviour represents a serious risk to the safety or well being of other members, workers, or the community at large.

    Police

    In circumstances where a worker is given, finds, or confiscates an illegal substance, there is no legal obligation (see below) to contact the Police but it would be good practice to inform them of the circumstances. It is always beneficial to maintain an effective working partnership with the local Police.

    Parents

    In cases of immediate risk to health the parents will be contacted. If the worker believes parental contact would exacerbate the situation (e.g. the family home may be an important factor in the young person’s drug use) he/she must discuss the situation with the Child Protection Co-ordinator prior to any contact being made.

    Dealing with drug related situations

    Establish and be clear about the nature of the incident before deciding on any course of action.

    Finding drugs

    If workers find any drugs, including prescribed medication, in a communal area they will be removed, to limit the risk to others. The law allows youth workers to confiscate illegal drugs, but they must be destroyed immediately or handed to the Police (it is not a legal requirement to inform the Police who the substance was taken from – see disposal of illegal drugs). If the drug is prescribed medication it will either be returned to the owner, or handed in to a pharmacist.

    Disposal of illegal drugs

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Where the quantity of drugs found is large (implying supply) the Police should be notified. Small quantities of drugs can be flushed away. The incident must first be logged (see record keeping), and should be carried out in the presence of another worker. Disposal should be carried out as soon as practicable, otherwise the worker could themselves be open to charges of possession. Workers must take extreme care if disposing of needles. If no sharps bins are available they should be carefully placed in a safe place (e.g. drinks can) until proper disposal can be arranged.

Use on premises
The parish will not tolerate the use of any drugs on the premises. Where workers suspect drug use is taking place they must always take action. This may include the young person being asked to leave, or the Police being contacted.

Intoxication on Premises

Anyone whose behaviour is disruptive, whether due to drugs or alcohol, will be challenged and asked to change their behaviour. If they refuse to do so they will be asked to leave the premises. If their condition gives cause for concern medical assistance will be called.

Incident recording

An incident book will be maintained. This book will record all incidents including drug related incidents. This should not be a loose-leaf file, it should be stored securely. Staff should endeavour to record accurate details as soon as possible following an incident.

Referral

Should a young person be identified as a drug user, they should be offered support, guidance, and relevant referral if needed.

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General Information

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B1. Responsibilities as set out in “Protecting all God’s Children 2004”
1 – The Church of England, within its national institutions and within Dioceses, has an obligation to support parishes and those working with children and young people in exercising their primary responsibility for those entrusted to them. There is a necessity:

  • ·  To be involved with parliament, government departments, the voluntary sector and ecumenical partners in the continuing debate about child abuse
  • ·  To keep abreast of new research and initiatives, including information about how abusers of children operate
  • ·  To ensure that the National Church Institutions follow good practice procedures for recruitment of staff
  • ·  To modify institutional practices, in the light of research, putting in place appropriate systems of accountability and supervision at all levels of the church’s life, and ensuring that disciplinary and employment procedures are robust enough to manage risk
  • ·  To listen to those who have been abused to learn how to improve practice
  • ·  To ensure that all licensed ministers are carefully selected and trained andthat their training equips them for the responsibilities of ministry in this areaamongst others
  • ·  To ensure the continuing development of procedures and guidance on goodpractice which are the main ways that those who are in direct contact with children and young people are properly equipped to undertake their responsibilities
  • ·  To ensure, as far as possible, that those with responsibilities towards children can undertake their tasks confidently and without feeling unduly vulnerable to unfounded allegations.It is important to recognise that it is people who protect and not only procedures. The aim is to create a culture of informed vigilance at all levels in the Church by:
  • ·  Raising awareness of the issues involved in protecting children in the church
  • ·  Addressing the needs of our children in all their cultural, spiritual, intellectual,racial and physical diversity
  • ·  Responding to the needs of children and adults who have been abused
  • ·  Supporting and training those who work with children, encouraging them towork together to follow good practice
  • ·  Caring appropriately for those in the church community who have abusedchildren.The Church is probably unique in its ministry to both those who have been abused and those who have abused. It is within this tension that policy, procedures and good practice must be made to work. The Church seeks not simply to keep the law in regard to child protection but to foster and promote best practice as part of its work for and witness to God’s kingdom. Therefore:
  • ·  The Church of England fully endorses the principle, enshrined in the Children Act 1989, that the welfare of the child is paramount
  • ·  The church recognises that it is required by God to foster relationships of the utmost integrity, respect, truthfulness and trustworthiness. Clergy and laity
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who come into contact with children within the church need to operate within a carefully thought out framework of policy, procedures and good practice which will ensure that children are safeguarded and nurtured within a culture of informed vigilance

  • ·  Clergy and laity need to have an awareness of their use of authority and power and never betray the trust that is given them
  • ·  Clergy and laity in the church should seek to maintain the highest standards of conduct in all worship, pastoral, educational, and recreational situations
  • ·  The church will take allegations of abuse seriously, fully co-operating with the Local Safeguarding Children’s Board1 in any matter concerning the welfare of children and young people. It acknowledges the prime responsibility of statutory agencies to investigate any significant harm to a child. The church will never itself investigate incidents of suspected child abuse
  • ·  The church will work with the statutory agencies to manage the presence in congregations of those who have been convicted of offences against children including those who are on the Sex Offenders Register
  • ·  The Church of England will seek to work with other Christian and faith traditions to promote the welfare and safety of children and young people
  • ·  For the purpose of the policy and procedures a child is anyone under the age of 18 years. All those who work with or are in regular contact with such children must comply with this policy
  • ·  All those working with or in direct and regular contact with children in a paid or unpaid capacity will be carefully recruited and their backgrounds checked at the appropriate level through the Criminal Records Bureau. These checks will also be carried out on those supervising people working with children and on those whose representational ministry, office or status gives them the opportunity or the expectation for regular or unsupervised contact with children.2 – The House of Bishops will:
  • ·  Be responsible for this policy for the protection of children and young people in the Church of England and for future revisions
  • ·  Approve such procedures as are appropriate to ensure proper consistency in best practice
  • ·  Appoint a Bishop with lead responsibility for child protection
  • ·  Work with the Child Protection Adviser for the Church of England to co-ordinate a church wide strategy.3 – The Diocese should:3
  • ·  Adopt the House of Bishops’ policy on child protection together with any additional Diocesan procedures and good practice guidelines which shall be endorsed by the Diocesan Synod
  • ·  Provide a structure to manage child protection in the Diocese
  • ·  Appoint a suitably qualified Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser, directlyaccountable to the Diocesan Bishop, and provide appropriate financial,organisational and management support
  • ·  Include the monitoring of child protection in parishes as part of theArchdeacons’ responsibilities
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  • ·  Provide access to the Criminal Records Bureau for parishes, the Cathedral, the Bishop’s office and the Diocesan office for those beneficed and licensed clergy, paid workers and volunteers who need to obtain disclosures
  • ·  Provide access to a risk assessment service so that the Bishop or others can evaluate and manage any risk posed by individuals or activities within the church
  • ·  Provide training and support on child protection matters to parishes, the Cathedral,
  • ·  Diocesan organisations including religious communities and those who hold the Bishop’s licence
  • ·  Provide a handbook of procedures and recommended good practice to enable parishes and others to undertake their duties, encouraging them to implement such procedures and good practice according to their local needs.4 – The parish should:4
  • ·  Accept the prime duty of care placed upon the incumbent and Parochial Church Council to ensure the well being of children and young people in the church community
  • ·  Adopt and implement a child protection policy and procedures, accepting as a minimum the House of Bishops’ policy on child protection but informed by additional Diocesan procedures and recommended good practice whilst being responsive to local parish requirements
  • ·  Appoint a co-ordinator to work with the incumbent and the Council to implement policy and procedures. The co-ordinator must ensure that any concerns about a child or the behaviour of an adult are appropriately reported both to the statutory agencies and to the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser. Ideally this co-ordinator should be someone without other pastoral responsibility for children in the parish
  • ·  Appoint a person who may be different from the co-ordinator to be a children’s advocate. This should be someone whom children know they could talk to about any problems, if they so wish
  • ·  Display the “Childline” telephone number
  • ·  Ensure that all those authorised to work with children and young people or ina position of authority are appropriately appointed, trained and supported and provide all authorised personnel with a copy of the child protection policy, procedures and good practice guidelines
  • ·  Pay particular attention to children with special needs and those from ethnic minorities to ensure their full integration and protection within the church community
  • ·  Create a culture of ‘ informed vigilance’ which takes children seriously
  • ·  Ensure that appropriate pastoral care is available for those adults who havedisclosed that they have been abused as children
  • ·  Provide, as appropriate, support for all parents and families in thecongregation, being aware particularly of parents whose children havesuffered abuse
  • ·  Ensure that those who may pose a threat to children and young people areeffectively managed and monitored
  • ·  Ensure that appropriate health and safety policies and procedures are inplace
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  • ·  Provide appropriate insurance cover for all activities undertaken in the name of the parish
  • ·  Review the implementation of the child protection policy, procedures and good practice, at least annually.Rural parishes or parishes held in plurality may wish to join together to implement the policy and procedures. It should be noted however that people working in isolated situations can be vulnerable and care should be taken to implement the policy in full.Local Ecumenical projects should agree which denomination’s child protection policy to follow and this decision should be ratified by the Bishop and other appropriate church leaders.

    B2. Criminal Records Bureau

    Please note that arrangements for making recruitment checks will change in Autumn 2009 when the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) will be responsible for all decisions regarding barring people from working, or volunteering with children or vulnerable adults. All new workers will need to be registered with the ISA via an enhanced CRB disclosure before they start work. More advice and training will be provided before the new system becomes mandatory.

    Introduction
    1 – What is the CRB?
    The Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) has been set up to facilitate safer recruitment to protect children and vulnerable adults. Previously Police checks had mainly been confined to people employed in the statutory sector in jobs involving significant unsupervised access to children. Many other staff in the statutory sector working with children or vulnerable adults were not subject to Police checks. Similarly, many other employers and voluntary organisations did not have access to Police records. The CRB is set up to implement part V of the Police Act 1997.

    2 – Purpose of CRB

    The purpose of the CRB is to help prevent unsuitable people having access to jobs and positions that provide opportunities to harm children and vulnerable adults.

    3 – How this will be achieved?

    CRB provides the disclosure service as an extra tool for recruiters. The CRB will check the records of the Police National Computer and records held by the Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF) that is List 99 and the Protection of Children Act List POCA. The Department of Health (DH) holds the new Protection of Vulnerable Adults List POVA,which will be checked for certain positions involved with vulnerable adults.

    4 – Who needs a Disclosure?

    Everyone working for the church or volunteering for an activity, which is a church responsibility, needs to be considered for a disclosure. The task needs to be assessed to determine what level of contact, if any, the person will have with children or vulnerable adults. It is now a criminal offence to employ someone who is barred from working with children by the courts or by being on a register held by either the

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DCSF or the DH. All Child Protection Co-ordinators and those trained to validate identity for the CRB should apply for an Enhanced Disclosure.

5 – Levels of Disclosure: Enhanced and Standard

There are currently two levels of CRB disclosure available: Enhanced and Standard. Both levels of check involve consultation of Police National Computer records as well as registers held by the DoH and the DfES.
The Enhanced level also involves consulting the relevant constabularies for any nonconviction information (force intelligence regarding ongoing investigations etc) relevant to the applicant’s suitability to work with children to be disclosed, at the discretion of the Chief Police Officer in each case. On very rare occasions this information is not disclosed to the applicant and may instead be shared confidentially with the appointing body.

The Standard Disclosure is for people working with, that is having regular contact with, children and vulnerable adults, and also for people entering certain professions, for example the legal profession and accountants. This disclosure contains details of all convictions on record (including “spent” convictions, i.e. those that happened some time ago and normally no longer need to be revealed as specified in the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974) plus details of any cautions, reprimands or warnings. It also contains employment information from the DH and the DCSF (this level of disclosure is likely to be used for adult members of mixed age activities: volunteer helpers where the parents are present).

The Enhanced Disclosure is for posts involving greater contact with children or vulnerable adults. Such work might involve regularly caring for, training, supervising or being in sole charge of such people. This disclosure involves an extra level of checking with local Police force records who may provide non-conviction intelligence information to the registered body in addition to checks against the National Police Computer and the records held by the DH and the DCSF (this level of disclosure is likely to be used for all clergy, paid and volunteer workers with children, young people or vulnerable adults, leaders of mixed age activities and people whose position or status in the church provides them with opportunities to have unsupervised contact with children, for example vergers, caretakers, Board of Trustees, non-ordained worship leaders).

The CRB are encouraging us to make Enhanced level checks wherever there is any doubt about the level required.

6 – What the Disclosure can’t tell you

The Disclosure cannot tell you of:

  • ·  Any convictions after the date of the disclosure
  • ·  Any convictions from other countries outside Great Britain
  • ·  Any information held by Children’s Services regarding child care issues
  • ·  Any undiscovered offences.7 – How will a Disclosure be obtained?Applicants will be informed of the need for a disclosure at the beginning of the recruitment process. Once successful, the applicant will be given a form (obtainable from Diocesan Church House, 211 New Church Road, Hove, East Sussex BN3 4ED)
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by the person making the appointment. The applicant’s identity will be validated by a trained person in the parish and checked by a counter-signatory of the registered body (Diocese of Chichester Board of Finance).

8 – How long will a disclosure take?

It is expected that a Standard Disclosure will take a week and an Enhanced Disclosure three weeks. Current time scales are 5–6 weeks, although in a few instances long delays have been experienced.

9 – What is the cost?

This varies from time to time so contact the Diocesan Office for up-to-date information; checks on volunteers will be free. The Diocese will not charge any administration fees.

10 – Who needs to pay?

The CRB defines a volunteer as “a person who performs any activity which involves spending time unpaid (except for travelling and other out of pocket expenses) doing something which aims to benefit someone (individual or group) other than or in addition to close relatives.” All others are defined as employed. Therefore any retired clergy receiving fees, any organist, choir member or bell ringer receiving payment from the Board of Trustees or appointing body for their activity will count as employed. An ordinand before selection or a non-stipendiary priest not in receipt of fees will count as a volunteer. Choir members or bell ringers, who receive fees from wedding couples for example but not from the Board of Trustees, are counted as volunteers.

11 – What happens if someone has a conviction?

All information received during the recruitment process will be carefully and professionally assessed to determine whether or not it is relevant to the post or task applied for. Having a criminal conviction will not necessarily be a bar to appointment. The Diocese has in place a policy on the recruitment of ex-offenders.

12 – What is a registered body?

A registered body is an organisation (in this case the Diocesan Board of Finance) that is likely to need to ask “exempt” questions under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974, that is, to ask people to declare all offences, cautions, warnings and reprimands, however old, because they wish to hold a position which brings them into contact with children or vulnerable adults.

13 – What is an umbrella body?

An umbrella body is a registered body that also processes disclosure applications for other legal bodies, i.e. parishes.

14 – Who can use the Diocese as an umbrella body?

All the parishes of the Diocese and other legal entities/trusts connected with the Diocese or which are the responsibility of the Board of Trustees can use the Diocese as an umbrella body. If there is doubt, the Diocesan Secretary at Diocesan Church House should be contacted for permission to use the Diocesan procedures.

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15 – Renewing disclosures

The House of Bishops has asked Dioceses to renew Disclosures that are more than 5 years old.

16 – ‘Portability’ of disclosures from other organisations

Portability refers to the use of a CRB disclosure obtained via one Registered Body and used by another Registered Body. An example of this would be a disclosure obtained for a teacher via a Local Education Authority as the Registered Body and re-used by another Registered Body for a different role whether that be paid or voluntary.

The CRB no longer offer a Portability Confirmation service, and as such Diocesan Policy is now that applicants for positions working with children and young people in parishes must undergo a fresh disclosure, regardless of what disclosure documents they may have been issued though other organisations.

17 – Overseas applications

The CRB will provide information wherever possible on how to go about acquiring an equivalent record check for workers who have recently arrived in the UK from abroad. In some cases they may only be able to provide contact details for the relevant country’s embassy in Britain.

Where thorough checks are not possible consideration must be given to the safest framework for practice for the individual. It may often be appropriate to support the individual, who cannot be checked in a thorough manner or who may have little child protection experience, by offering close supervision and child protection awareness support. The latter would be co-ordinated between the Child Protection Representative and the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser.

18 – Further information

CRB information line: 0807 9090 811
CRB application line: 0807 9090 844
CRB address: PO Box 110, Liverpool L3 6ZZ Website: www.crb.gov.uk

Making an application

Detailed advice is contained in a separate supplement available from Diocesan Church House.

B3. Confidentiality and information sharing
1 – General duty of confidentiality
Both law and sound morals impose a general duty not to pass on information, which has been received, in the clear expectation that it will be treated as confidential. That duty is not absolute however and the courts will not intervene to restrain disclosure where (a) the information relates to a crime or other serious misconduct and (b) disclosure is in the public interest. Thus, where a child is judged to be at risk of significant harm or a child is likely to harm themselves or others, usually it will be legally possible, appropriate and highly desirable to disclose relevant information to the public authorities for the sake of protecting that child or young person.

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If such information has been received in confidence, the person giving the information should in the first instance be encouraged to disclose it to the authorities him or herself. Alternatively, the person receiving the disclosure should ask permission to pass the information on. If this request is denied it might still be possible to pass the information to a statutory body. Government guidance relating to child protection issued in 2003 gives helpful advice. The guidance states:

Disclosure in the absence of consent

“The law recognises that disclosure of confidential information without consent or a court order may be justified in the public interest to prevent harm to others.

The key factor in deciding whether to disclose confidential information is proportionality: is the proposed disclosure a proportionate response to the need to protect the welfare of the child? The amount of confidential information disclosed, and the number of people to whom it is disclosed, should be no more than is strictly necessary to meet the public interest in protecting the health and well being of a child. The more sensitive the information is, the greater the child focused need must be to justify disclosure and the greater the need to ensure that only those professionals who have to be informed receive the material”.

2 – Confession

It is possible that relevant information may be disclosed in the particular context of sacramental confession. Canon Law constrains a priest from disclosing details of any crime or offence which is revealed in the course of formal confession, however, there is some doubt as to whether this absolute privilege is consistent with the civil law. Where a penitent’s own behaviour is at issue, the priest should not only urge the person to report it to the Police or Local Authority, but may judge it necessary to withhold absolution until this evidence of repentance has been demonstrated.

It is in everyone’s interest to recognise the distinction between what is heard in formal confession (however this might take place), which is made for the quieting of conscience and intended to lead to absolution, and disclosures made in pastoral situations. For this reason, it is helpful if confessions are normally heard at advertised times or by other arrangement or in some way differentiated from a general pastoral conversation or a meeting for spiritual direction.

3 – Relevant legislation

Legislation designed to safeguard the private lives of individuals has been framed to take account of the overriding need to protect the wider community against crime and serious misconduct. Nevertheless, it is important to be aware of the legal obligations which apply to those who hold sensitive information about others.

4 – Data Protection

Information which relates to an individual’s physical or mental health, sexual life or to the commission or alleged commission of an offence is treated as sensitive personal data for the purposes of the Data Protection Act 1998. The Act restricts the use of such information, including its disclosure to third parties, without the explicit consent of the individual concerned. This presents particular difficulties where a vulnerable person is unable to give such consent by reason of mental or physical impairment. However, there is a useful provision which permits the processing of sensitive

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personal data where the individual cannot give consent, providing that the processing is necessary for the provision of confidential counselling, advice, support or any other service. There is also an exemption which permits disclosure of personal information to the Police where that disclosure is made for the purposes of preventing or detecting crime

5 – Human Rights

The Human Rights Act 1998 incorporated into UK law the European Convention on Human Rights, so that it is now unlawful for a public authority to act in contravention of a Convention right.

What constitutes a “public authority” for the purposes of the 1998 Act is a developing area of the law. The most recent judicial opinion suggests that (except in cases such as the conduct of a marriage where the minister can be said to be exercising a governmental function in a broad sense) a person carrying out duties within the Church of England which are simply part of the mission of the church (such as pastoral care) is not acting as a public authority. However, this is an area on which advice should be sought from the Diocesan registrar in any particular case.

Article 8 of the Convention provides that everyone has the right to respect for his private and family life, his home and his correspondence, and that a public authority may only interfere with this right where such interference is lawful and necessary for certain purposes. The most relevant of those in the child protection context are the prevention of disorder or crime, the protection of health or morals and the protection of the rights and freedoms of others. In any circumstances where Article 8 applies to a public body, there is a judgement to be made as to whether, on balance, an interference with that right by a public authority can be justified. Where allegations of abuse are concerned, the potential harm that might result from not reporting such allegations will be a relevant factor.

6 – Freedom of information

No church body is a public authority for the purpose of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, and so the Act does not have any direct impact upon the church’s activities. However, those sharing information with public authorities (such as local government departments and agencies) should be aware that those bodies are subject to the Act. However, information held by a public authority in connection with investigations and legal proceedings is generally exempt from public disclosure under the Act.

B4. Managing investigations where the church worker is not the primary concern
There may be occasions where an investigation is conducted on a spouse, family member or lodger for example, who is living with or in close conduct with a church worker either ordained or lay, paid or unpaid.

An agreement should be made with the multi-agency team or the Police who are involved on a case by case basis. The protection of any children must be the first consideration. It may be that the church worker would have to agree that no children would come to the house during the investigation. If this were not possible to

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regulate, the person under investigation may need to leave the house and be accommodated elsewhere.

The person under investigation might be a close friend or family member living elsewhere. They might need to agree not to visit the clergy home or home of the church worker during any investigation.

With any of these arrangements the person needs to be aware that the church is making no judgement about the case.

Sometimes information will come to light about convictions or serious allegations regarding this group who may come into contact with children through a church worker’s position. Such situations would need to be assessed by the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser in consultation with the risk assessment panel. An agreement may need to be made with the church worker in order to protect children.

B5. What is abuse and neglect?

Abuse and neglect are forms of maltreatment of a child. Somebody may abuse or neglect a child by inflicting harm, or by failing to act to prevent harm. Children may be abused in a family or in an institutional or community setting; by those known to them or, more rarely, by a stranger. They may be abused by an adult or adults or another child or children. Faith communities need to be especially aware of mixed age activities where adults have the opportunity to build up a relationship with a child in an informal and less supervised situation.

Spiritual harm

Child abuse occurs in all cultures, religions and classes. Within faith communities, harm can be caused by the inappropriate use of religious belief or practice. This can include; the misuse of the authority of leadership or penitential discipline, oppressive teaching, or obtrusive healing and deliverance ministries, any of which may result in children experiencing physical, emotional or sexual harm. If such inappropriate behaviour becomes harmful it should be referred for investigation in the usual way. Careful teaching, supervision and mentoring of those entrusted with the pastoral care of children should help to prevent harm occurring in this way. Other forms of spiritual harm include the denial to children of the right to faith or the opportunity to grow and develop within their own faith community.

Physical abuse

Physical abuse may involve hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning or scalding, drowning, suffocating, or otherwise causing physical harm to a child. Physical harm may also be caused when a parent or carer fabricates the symptoms of, or deliberately induces illness in a child.

Emotional Abuse

Emotional abuse is the persistent emotional ill treatment of a child such as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on the child’s emotional development. It may involve conveying to children that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate, or valued only insofar as they meet the needs of another person. It may feature age or developmentally inappropriate expectations being imposed on children. These may include interactions that are beyond the child’s developmental capability, as well as

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overprotection and limitation of exploration and learning, or preventing the child participating in normal social interaction. It may involve seeing or hearing the ill treatment of another. It may involve serious bullying causing children to feel frightened or in danger, or the exploitation or corruption of children. Some level of emotional abuse is involved in all types of ill treatment of a child, though it may occur alone.

Sexual Abuse

Sexual abuse involves forcing or enticing a child or young person to take part in sexual activities, including prostitution, whether or not the child is aware of what is happening. The activities may involve physical contact, including penetrative (e.g. rape, buggery or oral sex) or non-penetrative acts. They may include non-contact activities, such as involving children in looking at, or in the production of, sexual online images, watching sexual activities, or encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways.

Neglect

Neglect is the persistent failure to meet a child’s basic physical and/or psychological needs likely to result in the serious impairment of the child’s health or development. Neglect may occur during pregnancy as a result of maternal substance abuse. Once a child is born, neglect may involve a parent or carer failing to provide adequate food and clothing, shelter including exclusion from home or abandonment, failing to protect a child from physical and emotional harm or danger, failure to ensure adequate supervision including the use of inadequate caretakers, or the failure to ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment. It may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to, a child’s basic emotional needs.

Common signs and symptoms of child abuse

It is recommended that workers attend training events provided by their local Social Care Services or by the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser. This summary gives a brief outline of some of the signs and symptoms you may see which are causes of concern:

Physical abuse

The first evidence of abuse may not be an obvious severe injury.

Bruises

  • ·  In or around the mouth
  • ·  Fingertip bruising on arms, chest or face indicating tight gripping or shaking
  • ·  Bruises of different colours indicating injuries of different ages
  • ·  Two simultaneous black eyes without bruising to the forehead
  • ·  Bruising showing the marks of a belt or implement or a hand print
  • ·  Bruising or tears around the earlobes
  • ·  Bruising to the head or soft tissue areas of the body.Bites
  • ·  Human bite marks are oval or crescent shaped and can leave a clearimpression of teeth .
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Burns and scalds

  • ·  Burns with a clear outline are suspicious
  • ·  Circular burns from cigarettes
  • ·  Linear burns from hot metal rods or electric elements
  • ·  Burns of a uniform depth over a large area
  • ·  Friction burns from being pulled across a floor
  • ·  Scalds producing a water line from immersion or pouring of hot liquid
  • ·  Splash marks around the main burn area caused by hot liquid being thrown
  • ·  Old scars indicating previous burns.Fractures
  • ·  Any fracture on a child under 1 year old is suspicious
  • ·  Any skull fracture in the first 3 years is suspicious.Female circumcision

· This is illegal except for health reasons.

Neglect

Often difficult to identify, neglect leads to the physical and emotional harm of a child. The signs and symptoms include:

  • ·  Failure of a parent to provide adequate food, clothes, warmth, hygiene, medical care or supervision
  • ·  Failure of a child to grow within the normally expected pattern, they may show pallor, weight loss and signs of poor nutrition
  • ·  Failure of parents to provide adequate love and affection in a stimulating environment, a child may look listless, apathetic or unresponsive with no apparent medical cause
  • ·  A child may be observed thriving when away from the home environment.Emotional abuseEmotional abuse can also be difficult to identify. It is the result of ill treatment in the form of coldness, hostility and rejection; constant denigration or seriously distorted emotional demands; extreme inconsistency of parenting. Some of the signs and symptoms are as follows:
  • ·  Low self-esteem
  • ·  Apathy
  • ·  Being fearful and withdrawn or displaying “ frozen watchfulness”
  • ·  Unduly aggressive behaviour
  • ·  Excessive clinging or attention seeking behaviour
  • ·  Constantly seeking to please
  • ·  Over-readiness to relate to anyone, even strangers.Sexual abuseSexual abuse can be suspected based on physical signs, the child’s behaviour or following a direct statement by the child. It is often investigated because of a combination of these signs.

    Physical signs

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These will normally be identified by a medical practitioner. Others can be more generally observed:

  • ·  Recurrent abdominal pain
  • ·  Unexplained pregnancy
  • ·  Difficulty walking and sitting
  • ·  Faecal soiling or retention
  • ·  Recurrent urinary tract infections.Behavioural signs
  • ·  Knowledge unusual for the age of the child
  • ·  Sexually provocative relationships with adults
  • ·  Sexualised play with other children
  • ·  Hints of sexual activity through play, drawing or conversation
  • ·  Requests for contraception advice
  • ·  Lack of trust or marked fear of familiar adults
  • ·  Sudden onset of soiling or wetting
  • ·  Severe sleep disturbance
  • ·  Change of eating habits
  • ·  Social isolation and withdrawal
  • ·  Role reversal in the home e.g. a daughter taking over the mothering role
  • ·  Inappropriate displays of physical contact between adult and child
  • ·  Learning difficulties, poor concentration
  • ·  Inability to make friends
  • ·  Using school as a haven, arriving early and reluctant to leave
  • ·  Reluctance to take part in physical activity
  • ·  Truancy, running away from home
  • ·  Self harm, mutilation or suicide attempts
  • ·  Dependence on drugs or alcohol
  • ·  Anti-social behaviour including promiscuity and prostitution.Organised abuseOrganised abuse refers to any abusive practice which is planned or exercised by two or more offenders, or where more than one child is abused by the same person. This type of abuse does occur and needs very careful investigation. Good communication between everyone involved is essential. This type of abuse can include the production and dissemination of child abuse images by various methods including the Internet.

    Duties of the Local Authority

    The Children Act 1989 puts a duty on the Local Authority:

  • ·  To take reasonable steps to prevent children suffering ill treatment or neglect
  • ·  To share information about any child within the area who is likely to sufferharm
  • ·  To investigate where there is reasonable cause to suspect that a child issuffering or likely to suffer significant harm
  • ·  To safeguard and promote the welfare of children who are in need and theirfamilies by the provision of services.
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Recognition of suspected or actual child abuse is the responsibility not only of the statutory agencies – Police, Children’s Services, Health Services, Education etc, but also the community.

Definition of significant harm

The Children Act 1989 introduced the concept of significant harm as the threshold that justifies compulsory intervention in family life in the best interest of children. The Local Authority is under a duty to make enquiries, or cause enquiries to be made, where it has reasonable cause to suspect that a child is suffering, or likely to suffer significant harm (S47). A court may only make a court order (committing the child to the care of the Local Authority) or a supervision order (putting the child under the supervision of a social worker or probation officer) in respect of a child if it is satisfied that:

  • ·  The child is suffering, or is likely to suffer, significant harm
  • ·  That the harm or likelihood of harm is attributable to a lack of adequateparental care or control (S31).There are no absolute criteria on which to rely when judging what constitutes significant harm. Consideration of the severity of ill treatment may include the degree and extent of physical harm, the duration and frequency of abuse and neglect, and the extent of premeditation, degree of threat and coercion, sadism, and bizarre or unusual elements in child sexual abuse. Each of these elements has been associated with more severe effects on the child, and/or relatively greater difficulty in helping the child overcome the adverse impact of ill treatment. Sometimes a single traumatic event may constitute significant harm, e.g. a violent assault, suffocation or poisoning. More often, significant harm is a compilation of significant events, both acute and longstanding, which interrupt, change or damage the child’s physical and psychological development. Some children live in family and social circumstances where their health and development are neglected. For them, it is the corrosiveness of long term emotional, physical or sexual abuse that causes impairment to the extent of constituting significant harm. In each case, it is necessary to consider any ill treatment alongside the family’s strengths and supports.

    B6. Information about the sexual abuse of children
    Frequently asked questions about the behaviour of sexual abusers

    Who sexually abuses children and young people?

    Approximately 90% of convicted abusers are male. Whilst women do abuse sexually And there is probably some under reporting of females, evidence at present shows it is predominantly an offence committed by males. Children can be sexually abused by adults or by other young people. In the UK young people under the age of 21 account for approximately a third of all cautions and convictions for sexual offences.

    What are the implications of this?

    Many adult sexual offenders report that they began their behaviour around the age of 13 or sometimes younger. This means that when they are finally discovered they may have been sexually abusing others for many years and their behaviour will have become compulsive and hard to break. It also means that if a young person engages

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in inappropriate sexual behaviour it would be dangerous simply to view it as teenage “experimentation” out of which they will grow.

Why do people abuse?

The reasons why adults abuse are very complex. Sometimes they will have been abused themselves or be responding to past hurts or unmet needs. Sexual abuse of vulnerable children may meet a need for power and control or for self-gratification.

Are sexual abusers likely to abuse a particular type of child?

Sexual abusers will be attracted to children of different ages and characteristics. Some will abuse only pre-pubescent children, others will approach older children. Some will abuse boys, others girls and some children of both sexes. If an abuser is having a sexual relationship with another adult, this does not mean that they are not a risk to children. Some abusing adults may operate alone whilst others may be linked into an organised network.

Can we recognise a sexual abuser?

It is not possible to easily identify someone who will sexually abuse children because they are found in all walks of life and sections of the community, within all professional groups and from all social classes and racial and cultural backgrounds.

Does sexual abuse just happen?

A sexual abuser may claim that they did not know why the behaviour happened or that it was a result of stress, sexual frustration or misuse of drugs or alcohol. There is no evidence that this is the case. Sexual abuse is usually carefully and meticulously planned, often over along period of time. Abusers may choose friendships or relationships with adults who already have children or careers where they will have positions of responsibility over children.

Can an adult who sexually abuses a child stop by themselves?

All the available evidence suggests that over a period of time an abuser will have developed powerful sexual urges, fuelled by fantasy, towards children and will find it very difficult to control these impulses. Once discovered, an adult sexual abuser will need to have controls placed on their behaviour to ensure that they do not have opportunities to abuse other children.

How can a sexual abuser live with themselves?

Unless the sexual abuser is a sadistic offender who thrives on the pain of others, he or she is likely to have developed a fixed set of beliefs that serve to justify or rationalise their abusive behaviour with children. This distorted thinking can convince them that:

  • ·  The child wanted the sexual experience
  • ·  Children are seductive and provocative
  • ·  It won’t harm them
  • ·  They liked the sexual experience
  • ·  It was a “one-off” and it won’t happen again.The distorted thinking of a sexual abuser can be fed in a number of different ways including pornographic literature, seeking out other like-minded adults, or by misrepresenting children as sexual beings. In attempting to deny or minimise the
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effects of their abusive behaviour, a sexual abuser may appear very plausible. This can draw other people into their way of thinking.

One of the ways an offender can deny responsibility or seek to avoid having to address their behaviour through treatment is by claiming a religious conversion. When this is the case, it would be important to know whether faith in God has really lead to true repentance, taking full responsibility for the abuse, seeking to repair its damage and seeking to prevent a relapse by receiving the support of others.

Can a sexual offender be cured?

There is no evidence that a sexual abuser can be cured of an attraction to children. This is because the behaviour will have developed over many years and will be so entrenched that it will have become an integral part of a person’s character. The best way to stop is for them to develop an insight into their pattern or cycle of behaviour and by keeping away from situations where child abuse could occur. To ensure that there is no further offending the abuser is likely to require a long-term specialist programme and long-term supervision so that they cannot develop or reinforce their distorted thinking.

How do adults target particular children for abuse?

Adult sexual abusers are extremely good at relating to children and gaining their confidence and trust and are often well known to the child or their family particularly if they are seen as a safe and trusted person.

The “grooming” process

The process by which adults introduce the child into a sexually abusive relationship is known as “grooming”. Often this involves getting to know the child and showing them special attention before slowly progressing into sexual abuse. If undiscovered, this behaviour is likely to become increasingly intrusive, and an adult sexual abuser can regularly abuse the same child over many years. The abuse of other children at the same time is also possible depending on the level of access and opportunity.

In addition to “grooming” the child, an abuser will also “groom” other people around them to create the impression that they would not be capable of such an action. If they are discovered, the people around them may find it difficult to believe the allegations and may defend the abuser rather than think about the needs of the child. In such situations the child will feel very distressed that they are not believed and may be under pressure to retract their allegations.

Are certain children more vulnerable than others?

All children are potentially at risk from a sexual abuser. However, children may be especially vulnerable if they:

  • ·  Are left alone for long periods of time without proper supervision
  • ·  Are in care or away from home, at school or on holiday
  • ·  Are emotionally deprived and particularly looking for love, affection or seekingattention
  • ·  Are lonely or bored
  • ·  Are in need of high levels of intimate care or have communication difficultiesbecause they suffer from a disability
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· Are open to manipulation because they have a special enthusiasm such as sport or music and are dependent upon a group leader or coach to succeed.

Why don’t children tell?

Children are put under immense pressure by their abuser to keep areas of their relationship secret and not to tell anyone. Some of the main ways that this is done include:

  • ·  Offering children gifts or other treats
  • ·  The abuser may threaten the child, their family, friends or pets
  • ·  The abuser may entrap the child into thinking they have a special relationshipor secret
  • ·  The child may be told that no one will believe an allegation
  • ·  The abuser may place the responsibility for the abuse onto the child so thatthere is a feeling of guilt
  • ·  The child may feel that if a disclosure is made the family will be split up
  • ·  The abuser may isolate the child and discourage the child from makingrelationships with others who could be told
  • ·  The child may be emotionally dependent upon the abuser and may fear losingthem.How does a sexual abuser get access to children?

    Adults wishing to abuse children can gain access to them in many different ways. Any organisation that works with children has the potential to be targeted by a sexual abuser.
    This is why it is vital that churches develop safe practices in their work with children.

    With thanks to Elizabeth Pennington, Formerly Diocesan Child Protection Adviser, Coventry.

    B7. Care of adult survivors of abuse in the church

    Many adults in the church may be suffering from the effects of abuse. Abuse they suffered in childhood or as adults, abuse of different kinds. The church has a responsibility to support those people who may feel very vulnerable and whose vulnerability may open them up to further abuse. Some abuse may seem trivial to an onlooker, but the severity of abuse needs to be seen in terms of how the victim responded to the abuse both at the time and later. A 15 year old facing traumatic bullying at school might be as likely to feel suicidal as a 15 year old boy or girl raped by their father.

    Statistics

    Although numbers vary, some reports show that about one in 4 girls, and one in 9 boys are abused in childhood. Key research in 21 countries found varying rates from 7 to 36% of women and 3 to 29% of men reporting they had been sexually abused as children. One of the most rigorous UK studies found that 12% of women and 8% of men reported they had been sexually abused before the age of 16. There is some evidence that there is considerable under reporting from boys and men.

    Effects of abuse

    Some survivors cope well with life and are able to live apparently ‘normally’. Some, however, although they present a ‘normal’ face to the world, may well be suffering

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and sometimes be unable to say what their problem is, or even to know why they feel ill at ease and unable to feel a sense of peace and joy. Some may show a range of symptoms such as:

  • ·  Repeated bouts of depression
  • ·  Exhibiting anger and hostility – or unable to connect at all with feelings
  • ·  Behaving like a victim – low self-esteem and putting themselves down andconstantly apologising
  • ·  Inability to get close to people, or wanting to be inappropriately close
  • ·  Disturbed sleep, nightmares and so on
  • ·  Tending to ‘space out’ (cutting off from reality)
  • ·  Exhibiting fears, phobias and anxiety
  • ·  Self-harming (this is a way of coping, not something done ‘to get attention’)
  • ·  Tending to feel an inappropriate amount of guilt and shame
  • ·  Sometimes relying on smoking, drugs, alcohol or medication
  • ·  Experiencing hallucinations and/or ‘flashbacks’ of the abuse
  • ·  Sometimes moving from one abusive relationship to another.Loss of trustAdults and children who are abused can lose trust in those around them, especially if the abuse was within the home (most abuse is carried out by people known to the victim). The loss of trust will profoundly affect the life of the survivor. They may decide (often unconsciously) never to trust anyone ever again – and this is likely to affect their faith and relationships.

    Why didn’t you say so at the time?

    Many survivors say nothing about the abuse for many years. Some have buried their memories so deeply within themselves that they have ‘forgotten’ what happened – especially when the abuse happened when they were very young. Memories may be ‘triggered’ in a range of ways, for example:

  • ·  Hearing about abuse on television
  • ·  Being in another abusive situation such as finding difficulties with adomineering employer
  • ·  Being in a situation where they feel powerless
  • ·  Feeling vulnerable, ill, under stress, or suffering from burnout
  • ·  The death of their abuser or of one of their carers
  • ·  The birth of their own child.Few victims can report their abuse close to the event and so often reported abuse is about events of years ago, leading to difficulties with finding any proof of what happened. It is often one person’s word against another, and the likelihood of the survivor getting justice is slim. However, some cases do go to court but the experience can be devastating for both children and adults and they are likely to need considerable support.Pastoral care of survivors

    An adult or child disclosing abuse is in a vulnerable state. Above all they need someone to listen to them, and also to believe them. They may need to be ‘heard’ in different contexts and over several years. If there is a complex pastoral situation when an adult discloses abuse, (for example a young person in their twenties

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accusing a church worker of sexually abusing them), it would be appropriate to find some support for the different parties involved, such as another survivor to support the person making the allegations.

There is no quick fix for healing from abuse and it is crucial that survivors:

  • ·  Are not pushed into too early forgiving. Forgiving their abuser/s is a complexprocess, and considerable damage can be done to treat forgiveness assomething that they must do unreservedly and now
  • ·  Are not put in a position of feeling even more guilty than they already do(survivors tend to feel that the abuse was all their fault, particularly when therewas more than one abuser)
  • ·  Are accepted as they are, however full of anger they may be (anger can beseen as one step along the road to forgiveness – at least if they are angry they are starting to accept that the abuse seriously affected them and this can be a good starting point to move towards healing)
  • ·  Are given a sense that those within the church community who know about the abuse are ‘with them’ along the road to recovery. The journey can be very long and supporters are essential
  • ·  Survivors can benefit from professional counselling if that is available, but also joining a self-help group can provide the kind of long term support needed
  • ·  Survivors helping other survivors can be powerful and effective.Survivors and churchMany survivors have problems with attending church and it can be that some of those on the fringes of church communities can include survivors. There are some specific things that can be difficult:
  • ·  Saying the Lord’s Prayer (believing that they must forgive immediately or God will reject them)
  • ·  Specific words can trigger unwanted feelings or images, such as ‘Father’, ‘sin’, ‘let Jesus come into you’, ‘overshadow’
  • ·  The peace can frighten survivors because they often don’t want to be touched, particularly hugged
  • ·  The emphasis on sin can be so difficult that some survivors leave the church altogether
  • ·  Anointing and touch is very difficult for someone whose body boundaries have been violated.Holy Communion can have extreme problems:
  • ·  Words such as ‘blood’ and ‘body’ can trigger memories of the abuse
  • ·  Some can’t cope with anyone behind them so queuing to get to the altar isdifficult
  • ·  Having to get physically close to others, perhaps leading to unwelcome smellssuch as deodorant, aftershave, or the smell of alcohol
  • ·  Kneeling with a man standing over them delivering wine at crotch level.Those who have been ritually or spiritually abused face particular difficulties. Triggers may include ritual symbols and equipment such as the altar, candles, chalice, crosses and crucifixes, the sacrificial lamb etc. People abused by those in ministry may have been told it was ordained by God, a special service to those who
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serve the Lord, a blessing from God, spirit led etc. Sensitivity, care and ideally informed input are needed to help people work through these issues to discover the liberating truth of the Gospel.

The sense of pollution is frequently internalised. Some survivors even feel that if they go to church they will ‘pollute’ the service for others; such is their feeling of guilt and shame. It is important to recognise the vulnerability and possible ‘childlike’ state of survivors especially when they are in crisis or the early stages of healing. They can be over-compliant and easily manipulated. Power abuse within pastoral care is a real danger here.

Inappropriate responses to survivors

There are examples of inappropriate responses to survivors in the report Time for Action (from page 52) and these stories could be a basis for discussion about care of survivors with staff or Board of Trustees members.
It is inappropriate to:

  • ·  Tell a survivor it is her fault that she has lost her virginity
  • ·  Insist a survivor must forgive before he or she comes to communion
  • ·  Tell them ‘it was all so long ago, why don’t you forgive and forget?’
  • ·  Expect a survivor to move towards recovery without considerable support
  • ·  Tell a survivor that they cannot work with children or young people ‘becauseabused people abuse others’
  • ·  Have unrealistic expectations of healing such as ‘we’ve prayed for you forover a year now so you must be better’
  • ·  Try to arrange for survivor to meet with the perpetrator or suggestreconciliation is a good thing, you could put someone in real danger
  • ·  Try to counsel survivors without having sufficient knowledge or awarenessyourself of the dynamics and issues of abuse
  • ·  Use touch or anointing without clear boundaries and informed consent.Survivors need time to work on their feelings and be able to accept that:
  • ·  It was not their fault
  • ·  They haven’t committed the unforgivable sin
  • ·  They have no need to feel guilt and shame
  • ·  God loves them unconditionally.B8. ResourcesBooks

    House of Bishops’ policy document on Child Protection Protecting all God’s Children
    Church House Publishers 2004

    House of Bishops’ policy document on Adult Protection Promoting a Safe Church
    Church House Publishers 2006

    Working Together to Safeguard Children Department of Children, Schools and Families 2006 What to do if you are worried about a child Department of Children, Schools and Families

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Time for action CTBI 2002

Child Abuse and the Churches Patrick Parkinson
Hodder and Stoughton 1997

From Silence to Sanctuary
Jane Chevous
SPCK 2004 (includes an excellent resources section)

Breaking the Chains of Abuse
Sue Atkinson
Lion 2006 (Healing from abuse of all kinds) Keeping safe
Michelle Elliott
NCVO 1986 (practical advice for parents)

Teenscape
Michelle Elliott
HEA 1995 (practical advice for teenagers)

Websites

www.teachernet.gov.uk www.kidscape.org.uk www.amaze.org www.crb.gov.uk www.svox.org.uk

Contains up to date government guidance Preventing abuse and bullying materials Advice for youth workers
Recruitment advice

Support for survivors

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Forms

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1. Child protection policy statement

Parish of ………………………………………………………………………………………

The following policy was agreed at the Board of Trustees meeting held on……………………………

As members of the Board of Trustees, we are committed to the safeguarding, care and nurture of all our members, particularly the children and young people.
We recognise that our work with children and young people is the responsibility of the whole church community.

  • ·  We are committed to implementing the House of Bishops’ Child Protection Policy
  • ·  ‘Protecting All God’s Children 2004’, and the Diocesan procedures, which are based on the Children Act 1989, and Government guidance “Working together to Safeguard Children 2006”.
  • ·  We will carefully select and train ordained and lay ministers; volunteers and paid workers with children and young people using the Criminal Records Bureau, amongst other tools, to check the background of each person.
  • ·  We will respond, without delay, to every complaint made that a child or young person, for whom we are responsible, may have been harmed.
  • ·  We will co-operate fully with statutory agencies during any investigation concerning a member of the church community.
  • ·  We will seek to offer informed pastoral care to any child or children, young person or adult who has suffered abuse.
  • ·  We will care for and supervise any member of our church community known to have offended against a child.
  • ·  We will review this policy annually and as part of this process will ensure that all our procedures, particularly in relation to the Criminal Record Bureau, are up to date.Our Child Protection Co-ordinator is:Name ……………………………………………………………………………………

    Address …………………………………………………………………………………

    Telephone number ………………………….. Email Address ………………………

    Signed : Parish Priest/Incumbent ……………………………. Date ………………….

    Signed : Board of Trustees ………………………………………. Date ……………………

    Signed : Board of Trustees ………………………………………. Date ……………………

    A copy of this statement is to be displayed in the church and a copy sent to the Bishop’s Adviser for Safeguarding Children and Adults.

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2. Progress chart for the appointment of a worker or volunteer in youth or children’s work

Name: ………………………………………………
Group: ……………………………………………..
Date of application : ……………………………….
Letter to referee 1 Sent :……………………… Reply received: …………. .. Letter to referee 2 Sent: ……………………… Reply received:………… .. Declaration form Issued: …………………… Returned: ………………… Details accepted ………………………………… ……

Candidate interviewed Date: ……………………………………………………

Names of people on interviewing panel: ……………………………………………. …………………………………………………………………………………………

CRB disclosure/ISA Registration applied for Appointment advice received

“Keeping Children and Young People Safe in Church” Pocket Guide and any extra parish instructions given

Job role provided and child protection undertaking signed

Probation period agreed
Candidate accepted
Probation period and review completed
Procedure completed
Incumbent: ………………………………………………………………………….. Signed:………………………………………………………………………………… Date: ………………………………………………………………………………….

Date: ……………………… Date: ………………………

Date: ………………………

Date: ……………………… Date: ……………………… Date: … …………………… Date: ……………………… Date: ………………………

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3. Introductory recruitment information for clergy, those who hold the Bishop’s licence, paid employees and volunteers who will have contact with children

The Church takes its responsibilities for the care and protection of children very seriously. We believe that we should provide our children with the highest standard of care and that the experience of growing up within the church community should be enriching.

Your position, employment, or task within the church includes, or could include, the care and nurture of children. This is a responsible but very fulfilling job and you will be trained and supported to fulfil this responsibility as appropriate for your task.

To ensure that our children are looked after as well as possible and that you are not put in a vulnerable position, the Diocese has drawn up procedures and recommended good practice to be followed. You are asked to read the Diocesan Pocket Guide “Keeping Children and Young People Safe in Church” and abide by its contents, together with any special requirements from the parish or organisation to which you belong. You will be asked to sign that you agree to do your best to follow good practice.

In accordance with the House of Bishops’ Policy on Child Protection, Protecting all God’s Children 2004, and the Criminal Records Bureau Code of Practice, you are asked to sign a confidential declaration form stating whether you have been convicted of a criminal offence or certain other matters. If for any reason you are unsure about making the declaration, please discuss this with your parish priest or the person appointing you, who will decide what will be done, following advice from the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser. It will be the case that people with convictions of sexual abuse against children will not be able to work with children or have contact with them in mixed age church activities where parents are not present. The completed form will be kept indefinitely, but securely, by the incumbent or appointer.

Two references will be taken up for everyone and a further check on this information made by asking you to apply for a Criminal Records Bureau disclosure. As part of the recruitment process you will be told what your responsibilities will be and your experience of working with children will be explored. The Church is keen to use everybody’s talents. The following criteria are a guide:

  • ·  Previous experience of looking after or working with children or young people
  • ·  The ability to provide warm and consistent care
  • ·  A willingness to accept the differing background and culture of children
  • ·  A commitment to treat all children as individuals and with equal concern
  • ·  Reasonable physical health, mental stability, integrity and flexibility.
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4. Parish information and application form for all paid and voluntary workers with children and young people

The post or task for which you are applying will require a disclosure from the Criminal Records Bureau at the standard/enhanced level before the position can be confirmed. The possession of a criminal conviction will not necessarily be a bar to taking up the post. All information received during the recruitment process will be carefully assessed for its relevance. The Diocese has policies on the recruitment of ex-offenders and on the secure storage of sensitive information. These policies may be obtained from your Child Protection representative.

Name ………………………………………………………………………………………

Maiden or former name ……………………………………………………………………

Address …………………………………………………………………………………….

Any previous address in the last 5 years …………………………………………………..

............................................................................................................

Previous church in the past 5 years ……………………………………………………….

............................................................................................................

Telephone (Home) …………………………….. (Work) ………………………………..

May we telephone you at work if necessary? ………………………………………….

Group with which you hope to work ……………………………………………………..

Age range ……………………………………………………………………………………..

Describe any educational qualifications or training courses which are relevant to this position

...............................................................................................................
...............................................................................................................

Describe any educational qualifications or training courses which are relevant to this position

...............................................................................................................
...............................................................................................................
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Describe any employment, volunteer positions or experience which are relevant to this position

...............................................................................................................
...............................................................................................................

Name and address of two referees who know you well, but who are not related to you, one of which can comment on your abilities and attitudes to children and young people

Referee 1
Name …………………………………………………………………………………………

Address ………………………………………………………………………………………

………………………………………………………………………………………………… Referee 2
Name …………………………………………………………………………………………

Address ……………………………………………………………………………………… …………………………………………………………………………………………………

I agree to complete a confidential declaration form and apply for a disclosure from the Criminal Records Bureau at the standard/enhanced level.

Signed …………………………………………………. Date …………………………….

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5. Confidential self-declaration form (to also be completed for those wishing to work with children or vulnerable people)

The self-declaration form applies to beneficed clergy, those who hold the Bishop’s licence or permission to officiate, employees, ordinands, and volunteers who are likely to be in regular contact with children or vulnerable people. This form is strictly confidential and, except under compulsion of law, will be seen only by those responsible for the appointment and, when appropriate, the Diocesan Safeguarding adviser. All forms will be kept securely under the terms of the Data Protection Act 1998. If you answer yes to any question, please give details, on a separate sheet if necessary, giving the number of the question you are answering.

1. Have you ever been convicted of a criminal offence (including any spent convictions under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974)?

YESo NOo

Note: Declare all convictions, cautions, warnings or reprimands, however old, or whether you are at present under investigation by the Police. Motoring offences that cannot be dealt with by a prison sentence need not be declared. Posts where the person is working or coming into regular contact with children or vulnerable adults are exempt from the “Rehabilitation Act 1974”. Convictions obtained abroad must be declared as well as those from the UK.

2. Have you ever been cautioned by the Police, given a reprimand or warning, or bound over to keep the peace?

YESo NOo
3. Are you at present under investigation by the Police or an employer for any

offence?

YESo NOo
4. Has your name been placed on the Protection of Children Act (POCA), List 99, or the Protection of Vulnerable Adults List (POVA), barring you from work with children or vulnerable people?

YESo NOo

5. Have you ever been found by a court exercising civil jurisdiction (including matrimonial or family jurisdiction) to have caused significant harm* to a child or young person under the age of 18 years, or has any such court made an order against you on the basis of any finding or allegation that any child or young person was at risk of significant harm from you?

YESo NOo

Note: Declare any finding of fact by a civil court that your actions have significantly harmed a child or vulnerable adult. Declare any court orders made on this basis.

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6. Has your conduct ever caused or been likely to cause significant harm to a child or vulnerable adult, or put a child or vulnerable adult at risk of significant harm?

YESo NOo
Note: Make any statement you wish regarding any incident you wish to declare.

7. To your knowledge, has it ever been alleged that your conduct has resulted in any of those things?

YESo NOo

If YES, please give detail including the date(s) and nature of the conduct, or alleged conduct, and whether you were dismissed, disciplined, moved to other work, or resigned from any paid or voluntary work as a result.

Note: Declare any complaints or allegations made against you, however long ago, that you have significantly harmed a child, young person or vulnerable adult. Any allegation or complaint investigated by the Police, Children’s Services, an employer or voluntary body must be declared. Checks will be made with the relevant authorities.

8. Has a child in your care or for whom you have or had parental responsibility ever been removed from your care, been placed on the Child Protection Register, or been the subject of a care order, a supervision order, a child assessment order or an emergency protection order under the Children Act 1989, or a similar order under other legislation?

YESo NOo
Note: All these matters will be checked with the relevant authorities.

9. Have you any health problem(s), which might affect your work with children or vulnerable adults?

YESo NOo

Note: Declare in confidence any health issues that may affect your ability to work with children or adults. This question is primarily intended to help you if you subsequently need to withdraw from work e.g. because of a recurring health issue.

* Significant harm involves serious ill treatment of any kind including neglect, physical, emotional, or sexual abuse, or impairment of physical or mental health development. It will also include matters such as a sexual relationship with a young person or adult for whom you had pastoral responsibility.

Declaration
I declare that the above information (and that on the attached sheets**) is accurate

and complete to the best of my knowledge. Signed…………………………………………………………………………………………. Full name………………………………………………………………………………………

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Date of birth…………………………………………………………………………………… Address……………………………………………………………………………………….. ………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Date……………………………………………………………………………………………. .
**Please delete if not applicable

Please return completed form to …………………………………………………………………………………………………. …………………………………………………………

Before an appointment can be confirmed, applicants may be required to provide an enhanced/standard disclosure from the Criminal Records Bureau (see incumbent or parish co-ordinator for details).

All information declared on this form will be carefully assessed to decide whether it is relevant to the post applied for and will only be used for the purpose of safeguarding children, young people or vulnerable adults.

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6. Pro forma letter for referees

…………………………………………… ……………………………………………

Date…………………………………….. Dear………………………………………

Diocese………………………………… Address…………………………………

(Name……………) has volunteered to help with our children’s or youth work, and in response to our Child Protection Policy has provided your name as a referee who can vouch for his/her suitability to work with children. I should be grateful if you would complete the questionnaire provided and return it to me at the above address. Any information given will be treated in confidence and disclosed only in order to protect a child, or to the applicant with your foreknowledge.

(Name…………..) will be working mainly with (age group………) as (give brief description of task………………………….).

In completing the questionnaire please bear in mind that it is the duty of the church to protect the children for whom it is responsible from harm, whether of a physical, emotional, or sexual nature. Each volunteer signs a declaration to this end and agrees to abide by the Diocesan Child Protection Policy.

Thank you for your help.

Yours sincerely

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7. Reference questionnaire

Private and confidential (please state if there is anything you write that you do not wish the applicant to see)

Name of volunteer…………………………………………………………………………… Your relationship to the volunteer (please circle)?
Relative Friend Employer
Other (please specify)……………………………………………………………………….. How long have you known the volunteer?…………………………………………………. Is the volunteer suitable to work with children?……………………………………………

From your own knowledge and experience of the volunteer, please comment on his/her honesty, reliability, health, experience of working with children (this need not be in a paid capacity) and attitudes to children

...............................................................................................................
...............................................................................................................

Do you know of any reason why it would be unwise to ask the volunteer to work with children or young people?

………………………………………………………………………………………………… ………………………………………………………………………………………………… Do you have any other comments to make about the volunteer?

………………………………………………………………………………………………… ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… Signed……………………………………………….. Date…………………………….

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8. SAMPLE Job role for volunteers / workers with children and young people

This form should be completed for all workers with children and young people. If the role changes substantially a new form should be completed. Copies should be retained by the volunteer, the Secretary to the Board of Trustees and the person to whom the volunteer is responsible.

Name of worker A N Other

Age range (Example) 8 to 11

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Name of group (Example) Junior Church

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Where/when they meet Church Hall and Lounge

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Person to whom responsible (Example) Junior Church Leader

Volunteer Work to be undertaken (Example)

  • ·  To prepare appropriate activities for the group (using material provided)
  • ·  To lead the 8-11 group according to the Rota
  • ·  To attend Junior Church meetings (once a quarter)
  • ·  To help organise special events, e.g. Christmas Services.
  • ·  To work with others to ensure that junior church is conducted in accordance with the Diocesan Child Protection procedures and Health and Safety policy and procedures.
  • ·  To work with others to monitor good practice and implement changes when necessary to enhance quality and safety.In order to sign the declaration below you are expected:
  • ·  To attend the next Safeguarding Training
  • ·  To attend any further training as directed by the Board of Trustees
  • ·  To attend any other relevant training

Group to Whom Responsible (Board of Trustees)

Signed (On behalf of the Board of Trustees)

To be completed by the worker with children/young people

I have understood the nature of the volunteer work I am to do with children and young people. I have read the guidelines produced by the church for safeguarding children and young people. I understand that it is my duty to protect the children and young people with whom I come into contact.

Signed Date

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9. Declaration for visiting choirs, volunteers or church workers from other parishes, denominations or organisations

Name of organisation………………………………………………………………………..

Name of visitor

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Self declaration

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CRB disclosure

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I declare that to the best of my knowledge there is no reason why the above may not work with children and young people.

Signed……………………………………………………………………………………….

Date………………………………………………………………………………………….

Position……………………………………………………………………………………… Please provide any confidential information under separate cover.

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10. Annual appraisal for volunteers

Name of Church………………………………………………………………………………

You have been invited to discuss your role as …………. ( state job role) over the past year and consider realistic plans for the next year:

On………………………………………………………………………………………………

At……………………………………………………………………………………………… .. .
To help you gain the most from this opportunity, you are asked to consider the following points in conjunction with your role description prior to the meeting (two hours maximum).

1. Job Role

  • ·  Are you clear what are your key duties and responsibilities?
  • ·  Do you feel your job description needs amendment?2. Personal
  • ·  What is your role in the team/what is your relationship with the others in theteam?
  • ·  Have you any skills or abilities which you feel are not being used to advantagewithin your sphere of work?
  • ·  What do you feel your strengths are?
  • ·  Where and from whom do you receive effective support? Do you needadditional support?3. Review of the past 12 months
  • ·  Evaluation of your work
  • ·  What obstacles have you encountered, if any? Have you any suggestions asto how these might be overcome?
  • ·  Which aspects of your work have you most enjoyed or which have given youthe greatest satisfaction?
  • ·  Which tasks do you feel you have done least well or have given leastsatisfaction?4. Training
  • ·  Is there any area of your work in which you think that extra training orexperience would improve your present performance?
  • ·  When did you last receive child protection training?5. Action plan for the next 12 months

· What plans would you like to achieve in your work during the coming year?

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Name of church……………………………………………………………………………….

Annual appraisal notes

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Name of volunteer

Name of church group

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Date

Main Points of Discussion

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Action plan for next 12 months

By Whom

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By When

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Signed…………………………………………………… Date…………………………….. Supervisor

Signed…………………………………………………… Date…………………………….. Supervisor

Copy to be given to volunteer, original to be retained by Supervisor

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11. Registration Form

To be completed annually for all children and young people attending church groups

Child’s Details

Full name……………………………………………………………………………………… Address……………………………………………………………………………………….. ………………………………………………………………………………………………… Telephone…………………………Email…………………………………………………… Date of birth……………………………………………………………………………………

School………………………………………………………………………………………….

School year group…………………………………………………………………………….

Church group…………………………………………………………………………………. This group meets between …………………………… and ……………………………..

On……………………………………………………………………………………………. For the following activities……………………………………………………………………

Whilst your child is in our care, it would be helpful for us to know whether he/she suffers from any allergies or phobias or is on any medication. Is there anything else you would like us to know so that we can care for your child as well as possible? Any special needs?

………………………………………………………………………………………………… ………………………………………………………………………………………………… Family doctor’s name………………………………………………………………………… Address………………………………………………………………………………………. …………………………………………………………………………………………………

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Parent or Guardian’s details and consent

Telephone number of a friend in case of emergencies………………………………. ………………………………………………………………………………………………… My child will be brought and collected from the group.

YESo NOo
My child has my permission to travel to and from the group without me.

YESo NOo
I agree to my child attending the above group and taking part in the specified

activities. Signed………………………………………………………………………………………… Date……………………………………………………………………………………………

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12. Parental consent form

To be filled in for any activity not specified in the registration form

Name of child………………………………………………………………………………….

Address of child……………………………………………………………………………….

Name of group………………………………………………………………………………..

Activity/event (give details here or on a separate sheet)……………………………. …………………………………………………………………………………………………

Departure date………………………………………………………………………………..

Departure time…………………………………………………………………………………

Return date…………………………………………………………………………………….

Return time…………………………………………………………………………………….

Name of leader………………………………………………………………………………..

Name and contact details in the parish during the event…………………………………

…………………………………………………………………………………………………..

I give consent to my child taking part in this event as detailed above (or on a separate information sheet).

I agree to any emergency medical treatment to be given as considered necessary by the medical authorities if I cannot be contacted (NB: The medical profession takes the view that a parent’s consent to medical treatment cannot be delegated. Medical consent forms have no legal status and a doctor has the right to insist on parental consent before treating a child. We have found however, that medical staff find this type of general consent helpful).

Signed……………………………………………………. Date…………………………….. Parent’s name and contact details during the event…………………………………. ………………………………………………………………………………………………… If not available please contact……………………………………………………………. …………………………………………………………………………………………………

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Details of any medical condition, allergies, phobias or disabilities which your child may have.

...............................................................................................................
...............................................................................................................
...............................................................................................................

Details of any medication (please ensure an adequate supply is brought to the event).

………………………………………………………………………………………………… ………………………………………………………………………………………………… ………………………………………………………………………………………………… Date of last tetanus injection………………………………………………………………. Details of any dietary requirements………………………………………………………. ………………………………………………………………………………………………… ………………………………………………………………………………………………… Doctor’s name………………………………………………………………………………… Address………………………………………………………………………………………. ………………………………………………………………………………………………… Telephone number…………………………………………………………………………… Any other information you think the organisers should know? ………………………………………………………………………………………………… …………………………………………………………………………………………………

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13. Suggested agreements for use with outside groups

a) For those groups with no Child Protection Policy of their own

The Board of Trustees of the Point Church has a child protection policy and procedures, a copy of which is attached. Your booking agreement is conditional upon you working within the practice guidance in this document. Any concerns or allegations, which arise about children in the course of your activities, should be communicated to our Child Protection Co-ordinator.

Name………………………………………………………………………………………… Telephone number……………………………………………………………………………

I have received, and agree, to abide by the child protection policy, procedures, and good practice of ………………………………………. church, and I will show evidence of this to the Child Protection Co-ordinator …………………………………………… if required. I understand that my booking agreement may be terminated in the event of my failing to comply with these procedures.

Signed…………………………………………………………………………………………. Designation……………………………………………………………………………………. Organisation…………………………………………………………………………………… Date…………………………………………………………………………………………….

Please sign two copies of the document, one to be retained by the church and one by the organisation.

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b) For organisations with their own child protection policy

We ………………………………………………. (organisation) follow our own child protection procedures based on the government guidance “Working Together to Safeguard Children 2006”.

We understand that this booking agreement is conditional on us keeping to these procedures and that the agreement can be terminated if we fail to comply with them.

We will show evidence of our compliance to the Child Protection Co-ordinator …………………………………………… if requested.

We will inform the Child Protection Co-ordinator if there are any concerns or allegations arising about children in the course of our activities.

Name………………………………………………………………………………………… Telephone number…………………………………………………………………………… Signed…………………………………………………………………………………………. Designation……………………………………………………………………………………. Organisation…………………………………………………………………………………… Date…………………………………………………………………………………………….

Please sign two copies of the document, one to be retained by the church and one by the organisation.

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14. Checklist for referrals

Action

Notes

Information gathered and checked for accuracy

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Incumbent and CP co-ordinator agreed on action

Diocesan Adviser consulted

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Referral made by either parish or DSA

People in the parish who are aware of the referral

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Suspension from duties considered

Media interest prepared for

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Support for all concerned in place

If referral accepted – insurers notified

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15. Session recording sheet

Session Recording Sheet for (insert details of activity):

Held on (date):

Children/young people in attendance (list names):

Adults in attendance (list names):

Focus of activity:

Incidents of significance (if any including concerns):

Action taken:

Signed……………………………………………………… Date…………………………

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16. Incident report form

Details of event and event leader

Contact details

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Name of child/young person involved

Date of birth of child/young person involved

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Date and time of incident

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Place of incident

Circumstances of incident

Names of those present

Nature of harm and treatment given

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Reported to whom

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Other action taken

Signed…………………………………………………… Date…………………………….. Print name……………………………………………… Position………………………….

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17. Anti-bullying policy for children and young people involved in church activities

Statement of intent

We are committed to providing a caring, friendly, and safe environment for all of our children and young people so they can develop in a relaxed and secure atmosphere. Bullying of any kind is unacceptable in our ……………………………………………… (name activity) parish/group. If bullying does occur, all children and young people should be able to tell and be confident that incidents will be dealt with promptly and effectively. We are a telling church. This means that anyone who knows that bullying is happening is expected to tell the group leaders.

What Is Bullying?

Bullying is the use of aggression with the intention of hurting another person. Bullying results in pain and distress to the victim.

Bullying can be:

  • ·  Emotional
  • ·  Physical
  • ·  Racist
  • ·  Sexual
  • ·  Homophobic
  • ·  Verbal
  • ·  Cyber

Being unfriendly, excluding, tormenting (e.g. hiding books, threatening gestures

Pushing, kicking, hitting, punching or any use of violence

Racist Racial taunts, graffiti, gestures

Unwanted physical contact or sexually abusive comments

Because of, or focussing on the issue of sexuality

Name-calling, sarcasm, spreading rumours, teasing

All areas of internet, such as email & internet chat room misuse. Mobile threats by text messaging and calls. Misuse of associated technology, i.e. camera and video facilities.

Why is it important to respond to bullying?

Bullying hurts. No one deserves to be a victim of bullying. Everybody has the right to be treated with respect. Children and young people who are bullying need to learn different ways of behaving.

We have a responsibility to respond promptly and effectively to issues of bullying.

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Objectives of this policy

  • ·  Bullying will not be tolerated
  • ·  All adults involved in working with children, as well as children and youngpeople, should have an understanding of what bullying is
  • ·  All adults involved in working with children must know what the policy is onbullying, and follow it when bullying is reported
  • ·  All children/young people and parents should know what the policy is onbullying, and what they should do if bullying arisesWe take bullying seriously. Children, young people and parents should be assured that they will be supported when bullying is reported.

    Signs and symptoms

    A child may indicate by signs or behaviour that he or she is being bullied. Adults should be aware of these possible signs and that they should investigate if a child:

  • ·  Is frightened of walking to or from school
  • ·  Doesn’t want to go on the school/public bus
  • ·  Begs to be driven to school
  • ·  Changes their usual routine
  • ·  Is unwilling to go to school (school phobic)
  • ·  Begins to truant
  • ·  Becomes withdrawn, anxious, or lacking in confidence
  • ·  Starts stammering
  • ·  Attempts or threatens suicide or runs away
  • ·  Cries themselves to sleep at night or has nightmares
  • ·  Feels ill in the morning
  • ·  Begins to do poorly in school work
  • ·  Comes home with clothes torn or books damaged
  • ·  Has possessions which are damaged or ” go missing”
  • ·  Asks for money or starts stealing money (to pay bully)
  • ·  Has dinner or other monies continually “lost”
  • ·  Has unexplained cuts or bruises
  • ·  Comes home starving (money / lunch has been stolen)
  • ·  Becomes aggressive, disruptive or unreasonable
  • ·  Is bullying other children or siblings
  • ·  Stops eating
  • ·  Is frightened to say what’s wrong
  • ·  Gives improbable excuses for any of the above
  • ·  Is afraid to use the internet or mobile phone
  • ·  Is nervous and jumpy when a cyber message is received.These signs and behaviours could indicate other problems, but bullying should be considered a possibility and should be investigated.
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Prevention

Strategies can be adopted to prevent bullying. As and when appropriate, these may include:

  • ·  Writing a set of group rules
  • ·  Signing a behaviour contract
  • ·  Writing stories or poems or drawing pictures about bullying
  • ·  Reading stories about bullying or having them read to the group
  • ·  Making up role plays
  • ·  Having discussions about bullying and why it mattersProcedures
  1. Report bullying incident to staff
  2. In cases of serious or persistent bullying, the incidents will be recorded bystaff
  3. In serious or persistent cases parents will be informed and asked to come into a meeting to discuss the problem
  4. If it is thought that an offence has been committed, contact the Police
  5. The bullying behaviour or threats of bullying must be investigated and allbullying stopped quickly
  6. An attempt will be made to help the bullies change their behaviour.

Outcomes

  • ·  In serious cases, suspension or even exclusion from the group/activity will be considered
  • ·  If possible, the children/young people will be reconciled
  • ·  After the incident/incidents have been investigated and dealt with, each casewill be monitored to ensure repeated bullying does not take place
  • ·  After the incident/incidents have been investigated parents/carers should beinformed of the action taken.Help Organisations

    Kidscape
    (Parent Helpline, Monday-Friday 10.00 am –4.00 pm) 020 7730 3300

    Parentline Plus 080 88 00 22 22

    Youth Access 020 8772 99 00

    For a copy of Kidscape’s free booklets “Stop Bullying”, “Preventing Bullying” and “You Can Beat Bullying”, send a large (A4) self-addressed envelope with two 1st class stamps to: Kidscape, 2 Grosvenor Gardens, London SW1W 0DH

    Grateful thanks to Kidscape

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18. Identifying hazards in youth and children’s work (Risk Assessment)

Risk assessments should be completed well before the event/activity and should be approved by the event leader or, if completed by the event leader, by a suitably qualified individual.

A risk assessment for an event/activity need not be complex but it should be comprehensive.

A formal assessment of the risks that might be met during an event/activity should have the aim of identifying the potential hazards and then reducing them. Children and young people must not be placed in situations which expose them to an unacceptable level of risk. Safety must always be the prime consideration. If the risks cannot be managed safely then the event/activity must not take place.

The risk assessment should be based on the following considerations:

  1. Whatarethehazards?
  2. Who might be affected by them?
  3. What safety measures need to be in place to reduce risks to an acceptablelevel?
  4. Can the event leader put the safety measures in place?
  5. What steps will be taken in an emergency?

A HAZARD is anything or anyone that could cause harm e.g. high stacks of chairs, uneven floors, unsafe electrical equipment, blocked fire exits, lack of fire escape signs, missing light bulbs, overfilled cupboards, high shelves, loose carpets, toxic paints, chemicals etc. horseplay, unknown workers (paid or volunteers), working in unsupervised situations, lifts in cars, challenging behaviour, smoking and drinking etc.

A RISK is the chance, great or small, that someone will be harmed by the hazard. The following factors should be taken into consideration when assessing the risks:

  • ·  The type of event/activity and the level at which it is being undertaken
  • ·  The location, routes and modes of transport
  • ·  The competence, experience and qualifications of adult helpers
  • ·  The ratio and gender of adults to children
  • ·  The group members’ ages, competence, fitness and temperament and the suitability of the activity
  • ·  The specific or medical needs of children/young people
  • ·  Seasonal conditions, weather and timing emergency procedures
  • ·  How to cope when a child/young person becomes unable or unwilling tocontinue
  • ·  The need to monitor the risks throughout the event/activity
  • ·  The person carrying out the risk assessment should record and give copies toall leaders prior to the event/activity, with details of the measures they should take to avoid or reduce the risks.The Board of Trustees should also be given a copy so that approval, as necessary, can be given with a clear understanding that effective planning has taken place.
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Frequent visits to local venues, such as a swimming centre, may not need a risk assessment every time. Nevertheless, it is essential not to become complacent. A generic assessment of the risks of such visits should be made at regular intervals and careful monitoring should take place.

The event leader and other leaders should monitor the risks throughout the event and take appropriate action as necessary.

Before booking a day/residential trip, the event leader should obtain a written or documentary assurance that providers, such as children’s activity centres or tour operators, have assessed the risks and have appropriate safety measures in place, including:

  • ·  Safe recruitment procedures
  • ·  Adequate public liability insurance
  • ·  A license to operate (where required)
  • ·  Clearly defined roles and responsibilities for its staff
  • ·  Child protection policy
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Risk assessment template

Risk assessment completed by (print name)…………………………………………… Review date…………………………………………………………………………………… Signed………………………………………………… Date…………………………………

Activity

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Potential hazards

List groups of people who are especially at risk from the significant hazards you have identified

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List what controls are already in place to reduce or minimise the risks or note where information may be found

How will you cope with the hazards which are not currently or

fully controlled

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Continual Monitoring of hazards throughout visit

Youth Camp

Environmental e.g. weather, terrain Health e.g. food poisoning

Human and behavioural e.g. drugs/alcohol

Activity e.g. swimming

Travel e.g. driving

Accommodation e.g. safe sleeping arrangements/fire safety

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Children Young people

Event leaders/ helpers

Parent helpers

Impact of age/stamina/ability

Sufficient adult leaders/helpers to ensure an adequate

level of supervision

Clear guidance to young people exploratory visit or research – this will allow for unforeseen or unknown hazards to be identified

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Removal of hazard

Modifying the design of an activity

Supervising an activity more closely

Training

Emergency procedures

Share plans with leaders prior to the event

During the event, on- going assessment of risk and remedial action as required

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19. Consent to use of images

Parish of ……………………………………………………………………………………

We would like to take a photograph/make a video or webcam recording of you. These images may appear on the church notice board, in printed material or on our website.

To comply with Data Protection Act 1998, we need your permission to do this and would ask that you sign and date the form where shown. We will not use the images for any other purpose.

Please return the completed form to……………………………………………………… …………………………………………………………………………………………………

I hereby give consent to allowing an image of (name of child/young person/adult)…………………………………………………………………………………

To be displayed in (location)………………………………………………………………. For the period of……………………………………………………………………………… After which it will be (delete as appropriate):
Destroyed Returned to me Kept in the church album

I have read and agreed to the conditions of use on the back of this form
Signed (parent’s signature)…………………………………………………………………

Date……………………………………………………………………………………………. .
Signed (child’s signature)……………………………………………………………………

Date……………………………………………………………………………………………. .

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Conditions of use

  1. This form is valid for (length of time in weeks, months, or year) ………………………………………. from the date of signing. Your consent will automatically expire after this date.
  2. Wewillnotreuseanyimagesafterthistime.
  3. We will not include details or names of any person without good reason and only with your expressed permission.
  4. We will not include personal email, postal addresses, telephone or fax numbers.
  5. We may use group images with very general labels e.g. ‘making Easter eggs’.
  6. We will only use images of people who are suitably dressed to reduce the risk of such images being used inappropriately.
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20. Implementation checklist

Checked & signed

Child Protection coordinator appointed

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Provide name

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Copy of “Protecting all God’s Children”

DSA notified of any known offenders against children

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Agreements in place for all known offenders

List of outside groups using premises

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Append list

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Child protection policies of outside groups seen

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List of all children’s, young people’s and mixed age groups for whom the Board of Trustees is responsible

Append list

Ofsted notified of any under 8’s groups that need to be registered

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List all leaders, helpers, and adults in mixed age activities who have regular contact with children when the parents are not present

Append list

List any others in positions of trust who may have unsupervised contact with children e.g. readers, caretakers, drivers

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Append list

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All the above have completed a confidential declaration form

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All the above have a CRB disclosure appropriate for the position held and are registered with the Independent Safeguarding Authority

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The parish has agreed arrangements for appointing new workers

Name of person trained to validate CRB applications

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Check that insurance cover is adequate for both activities and workers

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Check that each activity has sufficient adult help and that if possible there is a gender balance

All premises checked regularly for health and safety

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All groups have an attendance register and up to date registration forms

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Strategy agreed to publicise the child protection policy to the congregation

Training for clergy and Coordinator

Give dates of last training attended

Training for volunteers

Give date of last training event provided by the parish

List of local support facilities available for survivors

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Drink and drugs policy agreed

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21. Contact List

Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser

Shirley Hosgood – Direct tel – 01903 889823, mobile – 07810 724222
Correspondence should be marked Addressee Only, C/O Diocesan Church House, 211 New Church Road, Hove, East Sussex BN3 4ED

Children’s Services
Brighton & Hove Unitary Authority
Out of office hours (in an emergency) via the Police

East Team – Hodshrove Lane, Brighton BN2 4SB. Tel – 01273 295920
This team covers Moulsecoomb, Whitehawk, Queens Park, Kemptown, Bevendean, Coldean, Woodingdean, Rottingdean, Saltdean and Ovingdean

Central Team – Ground Floor, Bartholomew House, Bartholomew Square, Brighton BN1 1JP.
Tel – 01273 294470
This team covers central Brighton, Preston Park, Withdean, Fiveways, Hanover, Hollingdean,Hollingbury and Patcham

West Team – 6 Locks Hill, Portslade BN41 2LB. Tel (01273) 296527 This team covers Hangleton, Knoll, Portslade, Stanford and Hove

West Sussex County Council

Child Protection Referrals tel – 0845 075 1007 Out of hours emergency team tel – 01903 694422

Locality Offices
Bognor Regis – Durban House, Durban Road, Bognor Regis PO22 9RE

Telephone – 01243 642400, Fax – 01243 642437

Chichester – 1a East Row, Chichester PO19 1PD Telephone – 01243 752999, Fax – 01243 752644

Crawley – Centenary House, County Buildings, Woodfield Road, Crawley RH10 8GN Telephone – 01293 895100, Fax – 01293 895114

Haywards Heath – Oaklands, Oaklands Road, Haywards Heath RH16 1SU Telephone – 01444 446100, Fax – 01444 446144

Horsham – St John’s House, Springfield Road, Horsham RH12 2PJ Telephone – 01403 213100, Fax – 01403 320311

Littlehampton – 44 High Street, Littlehampton BN17 5ED Telephone – 01903 738900, Fax – 01903 738989

Shoreham – Glebelands, Middle Road, Shoreham BN43 6GA Telephone – 01273 268800, Fax – 01273 268801

Worthing – Centenary House, Durrington Lane, Worthing BN13 2QB Telephone – 01903 839100, Fax – 01903 839248

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East Sussex County Council
If the child lives in the east of the county, including Hastings and Rother, and is 11 years old and under, contact the Duty and Assessment Team (tel – 01424 724144). If they are 12 years old and over, contact the Youth Support Team (tel – 01424 724130).

If the child lives in the west of the county, including Eastbourne, Hailsham and Seaford, and is 11 years old and under, contact the Duty and Assessment Team (tel – 01323 747373). If they are 12 years old and over, contact the Youth Support Team (tel – 01323 747094).

Out of hours emergency tel – (07699) 391462.

Ofsted

West Sussex – 01243 777807
East Sussex, Brighton and Hove – 01323 747490

Sussex Police

County wide local number – 0845 60 70 999 Minicom number – 01273 483435

Probation Service

West Sussex – 01273 788299 East Sussex – 01273 695327

Other Agencies

NSPCC Helpline – (free) 0808 800 5000
ChildLine – (free) 0800 1111
Christian Survivors of Sexual Abuse – BM-CSSA London WC1N 3XX (enclose sae) Brighton Rape Crisis – 01273 203773
NSPCC (East Sussex) – 01424 722117 (counselling for adult survivors)
Diocesan Children and Youth Team – 01273 421021