THE CHURCH OF ST CUTHBERT, NORTH MEOLS
CHILD PROTECTION POLICY
(updated July 2018)
Our Mission Statement
We at St Cuthbert's Church commit ourselves to providing a safe and supportive environment for all who use the building in their work with children and young people.
* We have a duty of care to the young people with whom we come into contact.
* The protection we provide for these young people must be proactive, in that we should anticipate any difficulties before they arise.
* We need to protect the adults as well as the young people with whom they are working.
* St Cuthbert's endorses and will implement the Diocesan Policy "Safeguarding Children Policy and Procedures 2008”
* The highest standards will be maintained in all its contact with young people and adult volunteers will be given appropriate training and support.
* The exploitation of any relationship for self-gratification will not be tolerated and allegations of the abuse of children will be taken seriously and the appropriate authorities informed.
* We have clear procedures for supporting and supervising all work with young people.
Diocesan and Government guidelines on Child Protection are kept in the Parish Office.
CHILD PROTECTION PROCEDURES
The procedures are the basis of good practice in St Cuthbert's Church's care of children and young people. All who work with children and young people should have a copy of these procedures and sign to implement them.
The PCC and Rector have appointed JANET CHRISTIAN as the Safeguarding Officer in the Parish to assist on the process of protection.
The role of the co-ordinator is to provide support to adults, advise the PCC, work with the Rector and be a reference person for the development of good practice in the Diocesan Policy.
JANET CHRISTIAN can be contacted on 01704 226026
The role of an Independent Person is to provide an opportunity for children and young people to speak with somebody outside of the immediate situation about any concerns they might have.
Our local contact person to provide this advice is ANN EVANS
She may be contacted on 01704 535420
The telephone number for Childline, 0800 1111, is also displayed within the Church buildings.
Register of Roles and Adults
The Safeguarding Officer will keep a register of the various roles and activities undertaken at St Cuthbert's Church, together with a register of those who have been authorised by the PCC to have access to young people under 18.
The Rector and the PCC reserve the right to withdraw or restrict such authorisation.
All those to be authorised to work with under 18s are requested to complete a Declaration form concerning any past behaviour which might exclude them from working with under 18s. Those seeking a position for the first time will be asked to complete an application form as well as the Declaration. All authorised to work with under 18s will need to obtain an enhanced Disclosure from the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS). DEBRA JUDGE is the DBS Verifier for St Cuthbert’s and deals with all applications.
Roles and training
Those appointed to work with under 18s will receive an agreed role description and will be provided with support and training in their task. When new leaders are appointed, they will have an induction meeting with the Safeguarding Officer who will explain these procedures and ensure that the requirements for the appointment of new leaders have been met. Newly appointed volunteers will be requested to undertake a three-month probationary period.
Particular care must be exercised with children or young people with special needs. The Safeguarding Officer, who will have access to specialist advice, should be consulted if this is appropriate.
As a general principle, group leaders should ensure that programmes do not offer unsupervised access to under 18s. This requires careful planning in multi-room venues.
The PCC recognises that spontaneous situations do occur (unexpected home visits or offering lifts etc.) but volunteers should be aware of potential risks to themselves and the child. Such casual, spontaneous actions create particular situations of temptation and, conversely, scope for false allegations.
The PCC, therefore, advises that particular care should be taken to:
a. ensure that another adult is aware of the spontaneous activity/visit (retrospectively if need be)
b. ensure that (if at all possible) another adult is present for home visits
c. ensure that lifts offered are by an agreed route and time scale and that any variation is fully explained at the time.
In short: keep such activities public and accountable.
CREATING A SAFE ENVIRONMENT
Wherever possible, volunteers should not work on their own.
With groups it is strongly recommended that a minimum of 2 volunteers work together. Where the group is mixed, then it is recommended that a female volunteer is present. We are happy at St. Cuthbert's for husbands and wives to work together with young people provided there is another adult present.
Minimum ratios are recommended as follows:-
0-2 years 1 adult to 3 children.
2-3 years 1 adult to 4 children.
3-8 years 1 adult to 8 children.
8+ years 1 adult for the first 8 children followed by 1 adult for every 12 children (ie. 32 children would require 3 adults)
Particular activities may require a higher ratio.
The key issues are:- adequate control, supervision and the ability to cope with an emergency.
If you are in doubt about staffing, please consult with the Safeguarding Officer.
St. Cuthbert's Church has an insurance policy with the Ecclesiastical Insurance Group.
You must ensure that your group activities are covered by this policy. If not, specific insurance cover must be taken out.
Please see the Safeguarding Officer if you are in any doubt about this.
There is a copy of the fire regulations and drill in the entrance porches of the Church and the Hall. Please ensure you are familiar with the procedures in an emergency.
A First Aid Kit is kept in the Vestry and in the Hall kitchen. An accident book is kept with the First Aid Kits.
Try to ensure that at least one leader is a trained first-aider.
Drugs should only be administered with the written permission of a parent. It must be agreed that no liability is accepted by the leader or by the PCC.
All activities which involve under 18s must be undertaken with the consent of parents.
Consent forms should be completed at the time the youngster joins your group.
If your group is undertaking an activity outside of its normal range, you should secure specific parental consent.
You should keep a proper record of attendance of members of your group and adults present.
There may well be occasions when workers suspect that a child may be experiencing abuse.
The source of the abuse could be within the church context or outside.
Discuss your concerns with the Safeguarding Officer.