Safeguarding policy

Parish of St. Clement, Oxford

Policy on Safeguarding Children & Vulnerable Adults

1. We are committed to:

  • The care, nurture of, and respectful pastoral ministry with, all children and all adults
  • The safeguarding and protection of all children, young people and adults when they are 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.

2. We will carefully select and train all those with any responsibility within the Church, in line with safer recruitment principles, including the use of Disclosure and Barring Service criminal records checks.

3. We will respond without delay to every complaint made which suggests that an adult for whom we are responsible, may have been harmed. We will refer any such matters to our Vulnerable Adult Protection Referral Group consisting of the Rector, one or both Church Wardens, the Parish Safeguarding Officer (Vulnerable Adults) [PSO(VA)] and / or the Assistant PSO(VA) to which Group authority to act on behalf of the PCC is hereby granted without obligation to refer back to the PCC. The Group will however be required to report to the PCC from time to time on the exercise of its delegated powers, bearing in mind any legal requirement to maintain confidentiality.

4. We will respond without delay to every complaint made, which suggests that a child or young person for whom we are responsible, may have been harmed. We will refer any such matters to our Child Protection Referral Group consisting of the Rector, one or both Church Wardens, the Parish Safeguarding Officer (Children) [PSO(C)] and / or the Assistant PSO (Children) to which Group authority to act on behalf of the PCC is hereby granted without obligation to refer back to the PCC. The Group will however be required to report to the PCC from time to time on the exercise of its delegated powers, bearing in mind any legal requirement to maintain confidentiality.

5. We will fully co-operate with the police and local authority in any investigation and we will have a clear reporting procedure in place.

6. We will seek to work with anyone who has suffered abuse, developing with him or her an appropriate ministry of informed pastoral care.

7. We will seek to challenge any abuse of power, especially by anyone in a position of trust.

8. We will seek to arrange 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.

9. We are committed to promoting the inclusion and empowerment of people who may be vulnerable.

10. In all these principles we will follow statute, guidance and recognised good practice.

11. We will appoint a Verifier to institute Disclosure checks, to keep up to date records and to ensure that renewed checks are done when they are due. The Rector will fulfil the role of Recruiter to receive the outcomes of checks and to make appointments on behalf of the PCC.

12. We will advise the Diocese which Registered Body we use to process applications for DBS Disclosures.

13. We will advise the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser if we receive a Disclosure which is ‘blemished’ or ‘positive’.

14. We will review this policy annually, check that our policies are up to date, and supply a copy of the updated policy statement to the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser.

For further information, please contact our Parish Office.