The protection from harm of children and adults who may be vulnerable is of paramount importance to us. As a chaplaincy within the Diocese of Europe, we comply fully with the requirements of the Diocese’s Safeguarding Policy.

We will not tolerate the abuse of children or adults in any form.

Specifically, within our Chaplaincy we are committed to:

  • The care, nurture, and respectful pastoral ministry of all children, young persons and adults
  • The safeguarding and protection of all children, young persons and adults who may be vulnerable
  • The establishing of safe, caring communities which provide a loving environment where there is a culture of ‘informed vigilance’ as to the dangers of abuse.
  • The careful selection and training of all those with any safeguarding responsibility within the Church, including the use of available criminal records disclosures and relevant vetting and barring schemes.
  • Preventing abuse or the likelihood of abuse by encouraging and adopting a pro-active stance to safeguarding; responding to the slightest concern whether by rumour, speculation or from an anonymous source – every safeguarding concern will be taken seriously.
  • Ensuring that any concern about safeguarding must be passed onto someone in the Diocesan Safeguarding Team as there are no legal barriers to sharing such concerns.  Responding without delay to every complaint made which suggests that a child, young person or adult may have been harmed – co-operating with the local police, relevant local agencies and any other relevant body (eg other faith groups) in any investigation.
  • Seeking to work with anyone who has suffered abuse, developing with them an appropriate ministry of informed pastoral care.
  • Seeking to challenge any abuse of power, especially by anyone in a position of trust.
  • Seeking to offer pastoral care and support, including supervision and referral to the proper authorities, to any member of our church community known to have offended against a child, young person or vulnerable adult.

You will find details on how we action our policy and useful contact information on the following pages. If you have any queries please speak to the Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer

HOW DO WE ACTION OUR POLICY?

This page provides a summary on how we action our safeguarding policy. In the subsequent appendices you will find the more detailed information. If you have any queries please speak to our Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer.

What do we mean by ‘Abuse’?

The groups of concern include children and young people under the age of 18 who are vulnerable because of their age and life experience and also adults who may be vulnerable for a variety of reasons including a disability, an illness or their advanced years. The nature of the abuse can include playing on people’s emotions, neglecting their needs, physical or sexual assault. You can find more about this at the Diocesan website (as referenced in Appendix 6).

We all have a responsibility to safeguard children and adults.

Everyone in the chaplaincy has a responsibility to help to ensure that children and adults are not subject to abuse in any form. It is important that if we believe that abuse is occurring that we report this to the appropriate people so that the matter can be properly dealt with. Information on how to report problems is given later in this document.

As well as these general needs there are a number of people who have special responsibilities for safeguarding. These are:

  • Chaplains whose special responsibilities are explained in Appendix 1
  • Chaplaincy Wardens whose special responsibilities are explained in Appendix 2 Chaplaincy Councils whose special responsibilities are explained in Appendix 3
  • The Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer who is responsible for the overall coordination of safeguarding in the Chaplaincy. Details of their responsibilities are given in Appendix 4. If you have any worries or concerns about our safeguarding policy or any worries about someone being abused please speak to them in absolute confidence. (NB the Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer is identified and appointed by the Chaplaincy Council).

People in our Chaplaincy who work with children and vulnerable adults

People who work with children and adults who may be vulnerable may be required to be checked to ensure that they have no history which may make them unsuitable for that role. The detailed process explaining who needs to be checked (and why this is necessary) and for obtaining checks is explained in the Diocesan Safeguarding Policy (as referenced in Appendix 6).

Other groups who use our premises

Other (ie non Chaplaincy) groups who use our premises for activities involving children, young people and adults who may be vulnerable must either:

  • Have their own policy in place which must include all of the diocesan requirements; or
  • Commit themselves to following our policy at all times whilst using our premises.

Further information is given in Appendix 5.

Reporting suspected Abuse

Everyone has a responsibility to be vigilant to spotting incidents of abuse. If you become aware of abuse in any form please tell the Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer (or the Chaplain, a Warden, the Area Dean or Archdeacon) as soon as you can. If you would prefer, you can call the diocesan confidential telephone line +44 (0)207 898 1163 and leave a message as to your concerns. The Diocesan Safeguarding team will get back to you as soon as possible.

The diocese will then ensure that the concerns are properly investigated and will let you know what the outcome is.

In addition it is of course your right and duty as a citizen to inform the local law enforcement agencies where you believe a criminal offence has been committed.

Further information

Useful additional information, and how it may be accessed, is given in Appendix 6

DETAILED INFORMATION

In the following appendices you will find more detailed information on how we deliver our chaplaincy’s Safeguarding Policy as follows:

  • Appendix 1: The Chaplain’s Safeguarding Responsibilities
  • Appendix 2: Chaplaincy Wardens’ Safeguarding Responsibilities
  • Appendix 3: Chaplaincy Council’s Safeguarding Responsibilities
  • Appendix 4: The Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer (their role and responsibilities including obtaining safeguarding checks etc)
  • Appendix 5: Other groups who use our premises
  • Appendix 6: Important links to the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol where you can find further information

 

The Safeguarding Responsibilities of Chaplains and other Licensed Clergy

Key Responsibilities

1)     If you are either:

  • The only chaplain currently in your Chaplaincy; or
  • The ‘lead’ Chaplain in your Chaplaincy (eg the ‘senior Chaplain’ or ‘Team Leader’)

Then you are responsible for ensuring that:

  • Your Chaplaincy has in place an up to date Safeguarding Protocol.
  • Your Chaplaincy Council is fully aware of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol and has a working knowledge of your Chaplaincy’s Safeguarding Protocol.
  • A ‘Safeguarding Officer’ is appointed for the Chaplaincy.
  • All persons who are regularly involved with activities organised by the Chaplaincy which might involve children, young persons or adults who may be vulnerable undergo a safeguarding check as necessary (the criteria for who needs a check are referenced in Appendix 5.
  • Any safeguarding complaint or safeguarding concern, no matter how slight, within the Chaplaincy is immediately addressed.
  • The Annual Meeting of the Chaplaincy receives appropriate information with the objective of seeking to keep all members of the Chaplaincy up-to-speed on the importance of safeguarding.

2)     If you a licensed ordained minister in any other capacity ministering within the Chaplaincy it is important that you work with the Chaplain (or the Chaplaincy Wardens if there is no appointed Chaplain) having the above responsibilities to help to ensure that the Chaplaincy maintains a

robust approach to safeguarding.

3)     What do I do if someone seeks confession?

The Church’s position in this is clearly stated in the House of Bishops publication “Protecting All God’s Children” and your attention is drawn to this. In summary whilst it notes the constraints of Canon Law, nonetheless if there is any doubt in your mind then you ‘may judge it necessary to withhold absolution’ and alert the Bishop to the matter. The next steps will be for the Bishop to advise.

In all these matters, all Licensed Clergy are accountable to the Diocesan Bishop.

The Safeguarding Responsibilities of Chaplaincy Wardens

Chaplaincy Wardens

As a Chaplaincy Warden you have particular responsibilities for safeguarding – especially where your Chaplaincy is in a ‘vacancy’ or where there is no chaplain appointed and consequently there is no one else to take a lead role within the Chaplaincy. Because of this responsibility alone you will need to be subject to a safeguarding check as a matter of course. Your Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer will be able to assist you in obtaining the appropriate check.

Your detailed responsibilities will depend on whether or not there is a Chaplain in post as explained below:

1)     Where there is a Chaplain in post then you are responsible for:

  • Supporting the Chaplain in respect of their key responsibilities.
  • In the event of any safeguarding complaint or any safeguarding concern, no matter how slight, being made against a Chaplain, bringing this to the immediate notice of the Diocesan Bishop the Archdeacon/Area Dean and the Diocesan Safeguarding Team.

2)     Where there isn’t a permanent Chaplain in post (including in an interregnum) then you are responsible for ensuring that:

  • Any locum chaplains have a ‘PtO’ from the diocese (which will confirm compliance with the diocesan requirements in respect of safeguarding checks for visiting clergy – the Diocesan Appointments Secretary is to be kept informed of the clergy who are invited to cover services.
  • Your Chaplaincy has in place an up to date Safeguarding Protocol.
  • Your Chaplaincy Council is fully aware of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol.
  • A ‘Safeguarding Officer’ is appointed for the Chaplaincy.
  • All persons who are regularly involved with activities organised by the Chaplaincy which might involve children, young persons or adults who may be vulnerable undergo a safeguarding check as necessary (the criteria for who needs a check are set out in.  Any safeguarding complaint or any safeguarding concern, no matter how slight, within the Chaplaincy is immediately addressed.
  • The Annual Meeting of the Chaplaincy receives appropriate information with the objective of seeking to keep all members of the Chaplaincy up-to-speed on the importance of safeguarding.

ie all of the things that the Chaplain would otherwise be doing.

As a Chaplaincy Warden you are (as in other matters) accountable to the Diocesan Bishop.

The Safeguarding Responsibilities of Chaplaincy Councils/Committees

As a member of a Chaplaincy Council/Committee, as well as your general responsibilities as a

member of your congregation you have a responsibility to:

  • Support the Chaplain and Churchwardens in respect of their responsibilities for safeguarding.
  • Approve and renew the Chaplaincy Safeguarding Protocol each year.
  • Be aware of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol and have a working knowledge of your Chaplaincy’s Safeguarding Protocol.

Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officers

Introduction

All Chaplaincies are required to appoint a ‘Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer’. This section sets out the full role and responsibilities of a Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer. As a Safeguarding Officers you will be subject to a safeguarding check What is the role of the Safeguarding Officer?

The detailed role of the Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer is set out in Appendix 4.1.

Appointment

The Safeguarding Officer must be selected and approved by the Chaplain (or equivalent) in association with the Chaplaincy Council. They will be someone who is suitable for this role in view of their interest in safeguarding, previous experience etc. Ideally they might have had involvement with vulnerable groups (eg care of children or elderly adults) in a professional or similar role though this is not an essential requirement. The role should not normally be carried out by a member of the clergy.

If the individual is not known personally to the Chaplain or the Wardens then suitable references should be obtained prior to appointment.

The Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer, if they are not an elected member of the Chaplaincy Council, must be an ex officio member and have access to meetings as and when they believe it to be necessary to keep the Council informed.

 

The Role of the Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer

As the Safeguarding Officer in your Chaplaincy you are undertaking that role on behalf of the Chaplain, the Chaplaincy Wardens and the Chaplaincy Council.

The primary task is to seek to ensure that all children, young persons and adults who may be vulnerable, are protected and safe from harm.

The general requirements of the role are explained as follows (with further detailed information in respect of safeguard checking and record keeping given in ‘sub-appendices’ as shown).

  1. Working within requirements of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol you will need to be especially aware of the assistance which may be obtained from the Diocesan Safeguarding Team.
  2. Being aware of the local legal obligations re ‘safeguarding’.
  3. Being available for the appropriate safeguarding training.
  4. Working with the Chaplain and Chaplaincy Wardens you will need to ensure that your Chaplaincy has its own Safeguarding Protocol Statement. This should be approved by the Chaplaincy Council and reviewed each year.
  5. Working with the Chaplain, Wardens you will need to ensure that all who wish to be involved in leading/assisting with activities organised by the Chaplaincy which might involve children, young persons or adults who may be vulnerable are subject to appropriate checking as outlined in Appendix 5.
  6. Working with the Chaplain & Wardens you will need to be satisfied that there is an appropriate system in the Chaplaincy for keeping records.
  7. Advising the leaders of all activities organised by the Chaplaincy involving children and young persons (ie under the age of 18) to seek to maintain their own appropriate records covering the safety of the children involved (for example attendance, any parental consent forms, details of the adults responsible for running sessions, the recording of any accidents/incidents etc).
  8. Being vigilant, in the Chaplaincy, for any concern identified by yourself or by another person regarding any:
  • Child or vulnerable person who might be or have been subject to a risk of, or actual, abuse;
  • Person you may consider poses a risk to a child/vulnerable person.

And in such circumstances notify the Diocesan Safeguarding Team without delay and seek their advice as to what to do next.

The Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer’s Responsibilities for Safeguard Checking

As the Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer part of your role is to assist people in undergoing the necessary safeguard checking. The diocesan requirements as to who in a Chaplaincy should be checked and the process for undertaking those checks is given in Section 6.2 and 6.3 respectively in the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol

In summary your role of the Chaplaincy Safeguarding officer is as follows:

  1. Advising the Chaplain and wardens of the need to ensure that everyone who seeks to work with children or adults who may be vulnerable is subject to an appropriate selection process and completes as a minimum a Confidential Declaration Form
  2. Assisting people in the completion of the Confidential Declaration Form and discussing, in confidence, with them any issues this might identify noting that a criminal conviction might not necessarily be a bar to the intended activity (see below)
  3. Where an individual’s role is such that they require a formal ‘Safeguarding Check’ to identify if they have any related criminal or related history (Section 6.3 of the diocesan Safeguarding protocol identifies the current criteria for such checking):
  4. Undertaking the Identity Check to confirm the person is who they say they are. The Diocesan Safeguarding Team will provide you with the necessary forms and methodology to be used.
  5. Assisting people in obtaining the necessary safeguard checks from the relevant national authorities. Section 6.2 of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol explains how this is to be done including, as appropriate, accessing the UK DBS system, a link to the diocesan web page listing the relevant authorities for a range of countries other than the UK and what to do if there are no ‘relevant authorities’.
  6. Assisting people in obtaining the necessary reviews of safeguard checks from the relevant national authorities.

You should also check that people who work with children or adults who may be vulnerable checked are aware of:

  • The Chaplaincy Safeguarding Protocol
  • The requirement to undertake appropriate training

Record keeping requirements are summarised in Appendix 4.3.

The Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer’s Responsibilities for Record Keeping

As the Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer part of your role is to be satisfied that there is an appropriate system in the Chaplaincy for keeping records. You will need to do this in consultation with the Chaplain and Wardens.

The Diocesan requirements for keeping records (including an appropriate format) are set out in Section 6.7 of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol. It is recommended that records relating to an individual are maintained in a loose leaf folder (or similar) for each individual. Because of the nature of any records relating to safeguarding it is important the records are held in a secure manner (eg a locked cabinet) with access limited to those with a clear ‘need to know’.

In summary there is a need to keep (for 100 years) the following records:

  1. For those for whom a safeguard check is needed the following records must be kept:  A full record of those in the Chaplaincy who have been subject to a safeguarding check (NB for Clergy and readers this responsibility is held by Diocesan Office. If this information is required the details can be obtained from the Diocesan Safeguarding Team)
  • You can find a model record for this purpose in Section 6.7 of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol
  1. For any member of the Chaplaincy who has undergone safeguarding training.
  • The nature of the training and when it was completed
  • Any associated correspondence
  • You can find a model record for this purpose in Section 6.7 of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol.
  1. In respect of any concerns raised within the Chaplaincy (and which will have been notified to you as the Chaplaincy Safeguarding Officer)
  • A log of the original concern (to include the person reporting the concern, when it was reported, to whom it referred (victim and abuser); a brief summary of the information provided and when it was reported to the Diocesan Safeguarding Team (a ‘must’ in every case no matter how trivial). You can find a model record for this purpose in Section 6.7 of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol.
  • Subsequent correspondence etc.
  • The outcome of the investigation (which will be supplied by the Diocesan Safeguarding Team).

 

Appendix 5

What about non-Chaplaincy groups using our premises?

Introduction

If your Chaplaincy has its own premises, either through ownership or on a ‘sole use’ lease or rental basis then you will need to think about safeguarding where non-chaplaincy groups ask to use (whether for free or for a fee or donation) your churches, church halls etc.

This Appendix explains what must be done. It applies to all situations where non-chaplaincy groups use your premises for whatever reason and irrespective of how often they do this.

What do you need to do!

The following simple steps should be followed.

  1. Have your Chaplaincy Policy displayed in a prominent position
  2. Always bring your policy to the attention of the group leader and ask if they have their own ‘policy’ or similar statements.
  3. If they have their own policy, ensure that it is provided to you to check it through to see if it is in line with your Chaplaincy policy:
  • If it is, then all is fine but the person responsible for the third party group will still need to sign a ‘declaration form’ which you can find referenced in the Diocesan Safeguarding protocol at Section 6.10).
  • If it isn’t then you will need to work on the basis as if they don’t have a policy (see below)!
  • If they don’t have their own policy (or it is not acceptable to you) then they will need to agree in writing* to follow your policy. If you have a formal agreement with the group you should include a clause to this effect. Otherwise the person responsible for the third party group will need to sign a ‘declaration form’ which you can find referenced in the Diocesan Safeguarding protocol at Section 6.10.

(*NB for family groups using your premises for a ‘one-off’ family event, such as a wedding reception or party, then a written agreement is not necessary)

  1. If you are concerned that they do not have a suitable policy in place and are less than enthusiastic about following your policy then you must decline their request to use your premises.
  2. Any areas of doubt can always be checked with the Diocesan Safeguarding Team.

NB there is no requirement to physically ‘police’ the use of your premises when third parties are using them. By agreeing with your terms as set out above they have given an undertaking to comply with your requirements and there has to be a reasonable expectation that they will comply with these. If there are any concerns then the chaplaincy will need to question the continued use by that third party.

What if there is a problem?

If you become aware of any safeguarding concerns involving the group (whether or not these are linked to the activities taking place in your chaplaincy premises) then you will need to follow the steps identified earlier when concerns are identified in your chaplaincy.

Appendix 6 Further useful information

There are a number of matters which are fully explained within the Diocesan Safeguarding Policy documentation (see link). These are as referenced below. This chaplaincy endorses and follows the approaches given in the Diocesan policy.

  • What is Abuse? You can find additional information in Section 6.1 of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol.
  • Selecting people for roles in the diocese (including in your chaplaincy) You can find out about this in Section 6.2 of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol.
  • Who needs to be subject to safeguarding and why? You can find out about this in Section 6.3 of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol.
  • Identifying and addressing concerns: What do we do if there is a problem? You can find detailed information on what to do if you identify a problem in Section 6.4 Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol.
  • Helping Victims – Guidance on helping victims of abuse can be found in Section 6.5 of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol.
  • Working with offenders Guidance on working with offenders can be found in Section

6.5 of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol.

  • Record Keeping The Diocesan requirements for keeping safeguarding related records can be found in Section 6.7 of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol.
  • Information and training: You can find the detailed diocesan requirements in Section 6.8 of the Diocesan Safeguarding Policy Documentation.
  • Glossary of Terms – You can find a glossary of terms in Section 6.9 of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol.
  • Useful contacts – You can find a list of useful contacts and web sites in Section 6.10 of the Diocesan Safeguarding Policy Protocol.
  • In addition you can find out how the diocese will monitor the delivery of the protocol at Section 7 of the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol.

You can find the Diocesan Safeguarding Protocol (which includes the formal Diocesan Safeguarding Policy Statement) at: https://europe.anglican.org/safeguarding/safeguarding