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St Andrew's Church publishes its Safeguarding Policy

ST ANDREW’S UNITED REFORMED CHURCH

187 NEWBOLD ROAD

CHESTERFIELD S41 7BE

 

SAFEGUARDING POLICY

 

 

ST ANDREW’S UNITED REFORMED CHURCH

SAFEGUARDING POLICY

 

 

List of Contents                                                                                                   Page(s)

 

Introduction                                                                                                                   3

St Andrew’s Commitment                                                                                               4

Purpose of the Safeguarding Policy                                                                               4

Safeguarding Policy Statement                                                                                   5-6

Application and Review of the Policy                                                                              7                                                           

Definitions                                                                                                                     7

Further Information                                                                                                       7

Annex: Key Contacts Sources of Advice and Support                                                    8

 

 

 

 

Page 3

Introduction

 

St Andrew’s United Reformed Church (URC), Chesterfield (hereafter referred to as The Church) acknowledge children’s and adults’ right to protection from abuse, regardless of gender, ethnicity, disability, sexuality or beliefs.  The Church consider that the welfare of children is paramount and will follow legislation, statutory guidance and recognised good practice in order to protect vulnerable people who are members, adherents and visitors to the Church

 

The roles and the specific responsibilities of the Safeguarding Coordinator and Deputy Safeguarding Coordinator are set out at Appendix 1, although it is recognised that Safeguarding is a whole Church responsibility.  All concerns or allegations relating to the policy or the supporting procedures should be addressed to the Safeguarding Coordinator or, in their absence the Deputy Safeguarding Coordinator.  Their contact details and those of other professionals are set out in the Annex to this Policy Statement Document and can be found on the notice boards in the church. 

 

This policy is based on The Sample Policy Document issued by United Reformed Church and endorsed by the East Midlands Synod. The policy and procedures set out in this document need to be interpreted in light of the most recent URC Good Practice Guidance.  It is therefore recommended that when dealing with Safeguarding issues, referral to The United Reformed Church publication Good Practice 4 shall be appropriate.  This can be found on the United Reformed Church website: www.urc.org.uk/safeguarding.

 

 

 

Page 4

St Andrew’s Commitment

 

In providing a caring environment in which there is an informed vigilance about the dangers of abuse, the church will maintain and regularly review the policy and supporting procedures outlined in this document, which are designed to prevent and to be alert to abuse.

 

The Church:

  • will organise activities in such a way as to promote a safe environment and minimise the risk of harm to children and adults;
  • will provide a safe recruitment process for the selection and appointment of people to work with children or adults at risk, whether voluntary or paid, lay or ordained;
  • will provide support, supervision, resources and training to those who work with children and adults;
  • use rigorous and careful supervision to protect people from the risks associated with known offenders within the congregation, including implementing contracts with known offenders and those who have been assessed as posing a risk;
  • believes that domestic abuse in all its forms is unacceptable and inconsistent with a Christian way of living and recognises that it can affect both adults and children;
  • agrees that concerns and allegations of abuse will be responded to appropriately, including referring to the statutory authorities if necessary;
  • will co-operate with the statutory authorities in any investigation, will follow multi-agency decisions and will maintain confidentiality of any investigations to those directly involved.  Details of Key Contacts - Sources of Advice and Support are set out in the Annex to this document;   
  • shall refer concerns about staff - volunteers and paid, lay and ordained - that meet the relevant criteria to the Local Authority Designated Officer and inform the Synod Safeguarding Officer.

Purpose of the Safeguarding Policy

 

The purpose of this policy, set out below, is to promote Safeguarding, prevent abuse and protect children and adults at risk and staff.  This includes clear procedures for taking appropriate action when safeguarding concerns are raised involving children and adults within our church, or those who attend our activities and events. 

 

Page 5

Safeguarding Policy Statement

 

The following policy statement has been agreed by the Elders and Church Meeting of St Andrew’s United Reformed Church, Chesterfield.

 

St Andrew’s URC Chesterfield is committed to the safeguarding of children and adults at risk and to ensure their well-being. 

The Church:

  •  believes that all children and adults at risk should know that they are valued within the Church and safely enjoy and have access to every aspect of the life of the Church;
  • shall respect the personal dignity and rights of children and adults at risk (for example, as set out in the Human Rights Act 1989 and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child) and will ensure that our policies and procedures reflect this;
  •  recognises that we all have a responsibility to help prevent the physical, sexual, emotional abuse and neglect of children under 18 years of age;
  •  recognises that it has a responsibility to help prevent the physical, sexual, psychological, emotional, financial, discriminatory abuse and neglect of adults at risk;
  • recognises that domestic abuse affects both adults and children and believes that domestic abuse in all its forms is unacceptable and inconsistent with a Christian way of living;
  •  shall report any abuse of children or adults at risk that we discover or suspect;
  •  shall as a matter of urgency, contact the police where an allegation suggests that a criminal offence may have been committed;
  • recognises that Children’s Services has responsibility for investigating all allegations or suspicions of abuse where there are concerns about a child, and that Adult Services do so for adults at risk;
  • acknowledge that Local Authority Designated Officers LADOs (see Annex for contact details) have responsibility for dealing with all allegations and concerns about people working with children, whether paid or voluntary workers, lay or ordained;
  • recognises that safeguarding is a whole Church responsibility;
  • will continuously review the policy and all supporting procedures in light of experience and in line with the URC Practice Guide 4;
  • shall review the Policy Statement at the Annual General Meeting.

 

 

Page 6

In Support of this Policy Statement The Church is Committed to:

 

  • the maintenance of a loving environment, which is safe and caring, and where there is an informed vigilance about the dangers of abuse;
  • adhering to relevant legislation, statutory, denominational and specialist guidelines in relation to safeguarding children and adults at risk;
  • ensuring that the policy and procedures reflect national and local developments relating to safeguarding;
  •  building constructive links with the relevant Voluntary and Statutory Authorities;
  • taking all reasonable steps to ensure that as a church, everyone works within the agreed procedures of our safeguarding policies;
  • supporting the Safeguarding Coordinator and Deputy in their work and in any action they may need to take in order to protect children and adults at risk;
  •  following safer recruitment principles in the appointment and selection of all those who work with children and adults at risk, be they volunteer or paid staff, lay or ordained;
  • supporting, supervising, resourcing and training all those who undertake work with children and adults at risk;
  • ensuring that the children and adults we have contact with know that they are valued and feel empowered to tell us if they are suffering harm;
  • reporting any abuse of children or adults at risk that we discover or suspect;
  • supporting all those in our church who are affected by abuse;
  • supporting and supervising those who pose a risk to children or adults at risk;
  • implementing contracts of behaviour, whilst bearing in mind the overarching principle that the welfare of the child is paramount;
  • ensuring, where an assessment is made that someone poses an unmanageable risk to those in need of protection and could not safely attend our church, that they continue to be offered pastoral care and signposting them to appropriate agencies for support.

 

Policy endorsed by Annual General Meeting on Date:__27 April 2016__________

Next Review Date:__Annually at the Church AGM______________________________________

 

(Signed:_____________________________Date:_______________

 

 

 

Page 7

Application of the Policy

 

This Safeguarding Policy applies to:

  • all those who attend our church
  • our trustees and staff (both paid and voluntary)
  • organisations who hire our building with the agreement to operate under the church safeguarding policy

 

Children and parents/carers shall be informed of this policy and procedures.  

Even if the church does not currently have children or adults at risk attending, Safeguarding Coordinators will still be appointed. The Church shall be prepared for children or adults at risk attending in the future.  (Good Practice 4 Section 4)

 

Definitions  (Good Practice 4 Section 2 )

 

For the purposes of this policy and its supporting procedures the term

  • a’ child’ refers to those under the age of 18 years;
  • an ‘adult’ is anyone aged 18 years or over,

 

Duty of Care and Confidentiality

 

The Church has a duty of care to all beneficiaries of the church, whether adults or children.  The Church shall maintain confidentiality at all times, except in circumstances where to do so would place the individual or another individual at risk of harm.

Further Information

Detailed information on the Role of the Safeguarding Co-ordinator, Preventing Abuse, Definitions of Abuse and Recording of Safeguarding Incident is contained in The Supporting Procedures to this Policy Document.  A copy of these Supporting Procedures is held by the Safeguarding Co-ordinator and their Deputy.  A copy is also held on file.

The United Reformed Church Publication Good Practice Guide 4 Safeguarding Children and Adults at Risk Handbook for Churches also provides a source of information.  A copy of this publication is held by the Safeguarding Co-ordinator.

 

 

Page 8

Annex

Key Contacts: Sources of Advice and Support

The church Safeguarding Coordinator is the person to whom all concerns or allegations should be addressed:

Name     Name supplied but not for publication on the Website.                  

Telephone No        

Email                         

 

In the absence of the Safeguarding Coordinator, the Deputy Safeguarding Coordinator can be contacted:

Name         Name supplied but not for publication on the Website.                          

Telephone No                   

Email                                     

 

Synod Safeguarding Officer

Name                                     Jane Henderson

Telephone No                          07572 291007

Email                                       cydo ~aturc5.org

 

Churches Child Protection Advisory Service (CCPAS)

only be used for urgent advice if you are unable to contact Synod Safeguarding Officer)

24 hour helpline: 0845 120 4550

 

Local Authority Designated Officer

Name                                     Miles Dent

Telephone No                        01629 531940

Email                                      miles.dent ~atderbyshire.co.uk

 

Statutory contact in the case of a child

Name                      Central Referral Pathway 01629 533190 (Call centre) Starts the process

Telephone No         For consultation and advice only 01629 535353

Email  Number        Line open 24 Hours

 

Statutory contact in the case of an adult at risk

Name                        Central Referral Pathway 01629 533190 (Call centre) Starts the process

Telephone No           For consultation and advice only 01629 535353

Email                         line open 24 hours

Churches: 
St Andrew's