Policy for Safeguarding of Adults & Children
at St Matthew’s Tipton
Safeguarding children, young people and vulnerable adults is the responsibility of everyone and central to our mission and ministry and all Church and community activities in Tipton. This document demonstrates and guides those involved in our church on the part that they need to play in order to ensure that the Church is a safe environment for everyone.
This is done by acting together in a coordinated and supported manner and requires the Church Safeguarding Officers to make timely responses to concerns (advice sought / action taken), informing / consulting with the Diocesan Safeguarding Team about these, and drawing support from the Churches Child Protection Advisory Service (CCPAS) helpline and local authorities.
Safeguarding Officers: office t.0121 531 7778
Dr Stuart Hutchinson m. 07772 497668 Revd Kate Watson m. 07885 965459
Childline: t. 0800 111
Kim Hodgkins: t. 01543 306099 (Diocesan Adviser for the Safeguarding of Children)
This statement was adopted by St Matthew’s Church, Tipton at a Parochial Church Council meeting held on 11th March 2019.
- This policy will be reviewed each year to monitor the progress which has been achieved. We recognise that everyone has different levels of vulnerability and that each of us may be regarded as vulnerable at some time in our lives.
- We recognise that a position of power in relation to another creates a risk of vulnerability. As a consequence we strive to ensure that we consider power when working and leading with people.
- We recognise that children by virtue of legal status and dependency on adults for their emotional and physical needs will always be vulnerable and at a disadvantage. We commit to considering this in our children’s activities– undertaking supervision of staff/volunteers working with them and risk assessing activities and groups as a check and balance in our work.
- We understand that illness, disability, race, mental health and other issues can put adults in a position of vulnerability. We accept that these can be long term (ongoing), or temporary. We commit to considering this in our adults’ activities and events – undertaking supervision of staff/volunteers and risk assessing activities and groups as a check and balance in our work.
- We commit to transparency in our actions and accountability for our work.
- The PCC undertakes to continue to appoint a dedicated Safeguarding co-ordinator, offering training where appropriate commensurate with the role.
- We commit to discuss safeguarding and support to of safeguarding as a standing PCC agenda item.
2. As members of this parish we commit ourselves to respectful pastoral care for all adults and children to whom we minister.
- We will consider issues relating to spiritual care in all our activities, including for example prayer ministry, ensuring that members of our prayer team consider power, control and spiritual abuse issues in their ministry.
- In addition to regulated activities (covered elsewhere in this policy), we will ensure that those who care for people in our parish (who may not require DBS checks) receive appropriate safeguarding training.
3. We commit ourselves to the safeguarding of people who may be vulnerable, ensuring their well-being in the life of this church.
- We will consider safeguarding in relation to church activities in the community or for the community such as the weekly ‘Place of Welcome’ and Connect groups and ensure those involved in these activities receive appropriate safeguarding training.
4. We commit ourselves to promoting safe practice by those in positions of trust.
- We will ensure that those in positions of trust (such as wardens), and those with remits or leadership of groups involving children and vulnerable adults have appropriate enhanced DBS checks and that these are updated every 5 years.
- We will ensure that those in positions of trust (such as wardens), and those with remits or leadership of groups involving children or vulnerable adults, have appropriate enhanced DBS checks and receive appropriate safeguarding training.
- We will seek to develop relationships with other agencies and the diocese on safeguarding.
- Safeguarding including revision of policy will be a regular PCC agenda item and agree that whilst we have a named safeguarding co-ordinator we will accept collective ownership for this important issue.
- We will be transparent, open and not have secrets.
5. The parish commits itself to promoting the inclusion and empowerment of people who may be vulnerable.
- We will consider the impact of power, disadvantage, inclusion, disability, age and race on how we provide and plan for our ministry.
- We will actively (but appropriately), challenge each other in our work in order to ensure we consider a wide range of perspectives and views– ensuring that we do not oppressively impose our own values or views to another’s detriment.
- Where a person struggles with an activity due to disadvantage, disability or illness we will go the extra mile to assist them so they can participate and contribute as a full part of the church.
6. It is the responsibility of each of us to prevent the physical, emotional, sexual, financial and spiritual abuse of vulnerable people and to report any such abuse that we discover or suspect.
- Safeguarding including revision of policy will be a regular PCC agenda item and we agree that, whilst we have a named Safeguarding Co-ordinator, we will accept collective ownership for this important issue.
- We will not collude, keep secrets or make decisions when we have suspicion of abuse.
- We will seek through discussion the views of others and ensure through use of external agencies and the diocese safeguarding service that we engage and welcome external perspectives in order to promote a healthy accountable culture.
- We will report without being biased to our personal view.
- We will report and not investigate.
- We will record concerns factually in Diocese suggested formats (as per ‘Recording with Care Policy 2017’ - appended)
- We will not take chances with the welfare of children or vulnerable adults.
- We are open to scrutiny and encourage this in others.
- We have zero tolerance to abuse and put the welfare of others, whether vulnerable or not, first.
- We take seriously training and activities relating to the safeguarding of children and vulnerable adults and seek to engrain this in our congregational culture.
7. We undertake to exercise proper care in the appointment and selection of those who will work with people who may be vulnerable.
- We will adopt and apply a safe recruitment policy for the appointment of all staff and volunteers to church or church-related ministries and activities.
- Our incumbent undertakes to ensure that to the best of his or her knowledge all PCC members, wardens and ministry leaders are of good standing.
8. The parish is committed to supporting, resourcing, training and regularly reviewing those who undertake work amongst people who may be vulnerable.
- We will ensure that those in positions of trust (such as wardens), and those with remits or leadership of groups involving vulnerable children or adults have appropriate enhanced DBS checks and that these are updated every 5 years.
- We will ensure that those in positions of trust (such as wardens), and those with remits or leadership of groups involving vulnerable children or adults receive and engage with appropriate training.
- We will seek to develop relationships with other agencies and the Diocese on safeguarding.
- The appointed Safeguarding Co-ordinator undertakes to maintain a relationship with Diocese safeguarding team and ensure that safeguarding policy is followed, supporting and reviewing safeguarding practice in the church and church-related ministries.
9. The parish adopts the guidelines of the Church of England and the Diocese.
- The Parish will report and record in line with Diocese policies and comply with local guidance for implementing national policies as defined in Diocese polices. These include the Diocese Safeguarding policy, Recording with Care policy, Social Media policy and Safer Recruitment policy.
10. Each person who works with vulnerable people will agree to abide by these recommendations and the guidelines established by this church.
- Those working with vulnerable adults or children will sign a declaration to state that they have read and agree to abide by the points outlined in this policy and other safeguarding recommendations and guidelines adopted by the PCC as appropriate.
This church appoints Stuart Hutchinson (principal) and Kate Watson (deputy) to represent the concerns and views of vulnerable people at our meetings and to outside bodies as Parish Safeguarding Co-ordinators.
Incumbent …Allen Bower Churchwarden …..Nigel Watson.............
Churchwarden …Suzanne Whitehouse............ Date 11th March 2019