Adapted from the Parish Safeguarding Handbook Church of England
The Parish of St. Andrews Chippenham and St. Nicholas Tytherton Lucas
SAFEGUARDING POLICY PROMOTING A SAFER CHURCH
“SPEAK UP ON BEHALF OF THOSE WHO CANNOT SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES[PROVERBS 31:8-9]
PROTECT THE RIGHTS OF THE NEEDY”
The following policy was agreed at the Parochial Church Council (PCC) meeting held on 11 July 2023
In accordance with the Church of England Safeguarding Policy our Churches are committed to:
- Promoting a safer environment and culture.
- Safely recruiting and supporting all those with any responsibility related to children, young people and vulnerable adults1 within the church.
- Responding promptly but with caution, to every safeguarding concern or allegation.
- Caring pastorally for victims/survivors of abuse and other affected persons.
- Caring pastorally for those who are the subject of concerns or allegations of abuse and other affected persons.
- Responding to those that may pose a present risk to others.
- ‘Vulnerable adult’ means a person aged 18 or over whose ability to protect himself or herself from violence, abuse, neglect or exploitation is significantly impaired through physical or mental disability or illness, old age, emotional fragility or distress, or otherwise; and for that purpose, the reference to being impaired is to being temporarily or indefinitely impaired.
It’s important to remember that safeguarding applies to both adults and children, and that while the focus in the media has largely been on sexual abuse, there are many different types of abuse which faith communities have a huge potential to identify and prevent. These include:
- physical abuse
- domestic violence or abuse
- sexual abuse
- psychological or emotional abuse
- financial or material abuse
- modern slavery
- discriminatory abuse
- organisational or institutional abuse
- neglect or acts of omission
- exploitive use of technology
- spiritual abuse
The Parishes of St. Andrew and St. Nicholas will:
- Create a safe and caring place for all.
- Have a named Parish Safeguarding Officer (PSO) to work with the incumbent and the PCC to implement policy and procedures.
- In accordance with the Diocese of Bristol Safeguarding Team, we will Safely recruit, train and support all those with any responsibility for children, young people and adults to have the confidence and skills to recognise and respond to abuse.
- Ensure that there is appropriate insurance cover for all activities involving children and adults undertaken in the name of the parish.
- Display in church premises and on the Parish website this Safeguarding Policy.
- Display in church premises and on the Parish website the details of who to contact if there are safeguarding concerns or support needs.
- Listen to and take seriously all those who disclose abuse.
- Take steps to protect children and adults when a safeguarding concern of any kind arises, following House of Bishops guidance, including notifying the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser (DSA) and statutory agencies immediately.
- Offer support to victims/survivors of abuse regardless of the type of abuse, when or where it occurred.
- Care for and monitor those known members of the church community who may pose a risk to children and adults whilst maintaining appropriate confidentiality and the safety of all parties.
- Ensure that health and safety policy, procedures and risk assessments are in place and that these are reviewed annually.
- Review the implementation of the Safeguarding Policy, Procedures and Practices at least annually.
A Prayer for protection
Father, I want to live in the shadow of Your wing. When life is hard, and I don’t know what to do, help me remember that You are with me and that I am never alone. I cannot live without You. I cannot face tomorrow without the promise of Your presence. Today I choose to walk and live under the protection of You, The Most High. In Jesus’ name. Amen.