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SAFEGUARDING POLICY

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Last updated May 2018

Purpose of policy and Statement

Safeguarding is a difficult area to understand and can appear intimidating to the inexperienced. There are 17 pieces of individual legislation that come together to provide the legal frameworks within which every member of an organisation. To assist with signposting the safeguarding maze of information and towards best practice, this document is designed to inform everyone of their duties and responsibilities towards children, young people and the vulnerable.

Old Lodge Lane Baptist Church

(hereafter referred to as “the Church” in the Policy statement)

Statement of Intent

The purpose of the Church is to bring God’s word and blessing to all in our community. This policy applies to all staff, including ministers, senior managers and the board of diaconate/trustees, paid staff, volunteers/overseas visitors and sessional workers, agency staff, students or anyone working on behalf of the Church.

The purpose of this policy:

  • to protect children, young people and the vulnerable who attend Church events. This includes the children of adults who attend events and services at the Church;

  • To ensure all and any group renting the Church space for events for Children Young People and Vulnerable Adults are fully conversant and compliant with safeguarding Policy and procedures;

  • to provide staff and volunteers with the overarching principles that guide our approach to safeguarding and child protection;

  • the Church believes that a child, young person or vulnerable adult should never experience abuse of any kind. We have a responsibility to promote the welfare of all children, young people and vulnerable adults to keep them safe and promote wellbeing. We are committed to practise in a way that protects them.

In fulfilling this purpose, the Church is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of its children, young people and vulnerable adults by:

  • From time to time holding a range of events to include children, young people and vulnerable adults

  • welcoming children, young people and vulnerable adults into the life of the Church community

  • identifying children, young people and vulnerable adults who are suffering or likely to suffer significant harm, and taking appropriate action with the aim of making sure they are kept safe in the Church environment and at home

The Church recognises its responsibility for the safeguarding of all children, young people under the age of 18 and vulnerable adults, regardless of race, gender or ability, as set out in the legal frameworks below.

As members of this church we commit ourselves to the nurturing, protection and safeguarding of all children, adults and young people associated with the Church and will pray for them regularly.

Local Assessment Protocol

The Local Assessment Protocol was published in April 2016 and sets out the London Borough of Croydon’s arrangements for how cases will be managed once a child has been accepted as requiring a referral to Children’s Social Care (CSC).

The legal framework

This policy has been drawn up on the basis of law and guidance that seeks to protect children and young people, namely:

  • The Children Act 1989

  • United Convention of the Rights of the Child 1991

  • Safe from Harm; HM Government 1994

  • Data Protection Act 1998

  • Human Rights Act 1998

  • DOH-Working Together to Safeguard Children1999

  • No Secrets – DOH 2000.

  • Sexual Offences Act 2003

  • The Children Act 2004

  • Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006

  • Working Together to Safeguard Children; HM Government 2010

  • Protection of Freedoms Act 2012

  • Children and Families Act 2014

  • Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) code of practice 0 to 25 years – statutory guidance for organisations which work with and support children and young people who have special educational needs or disabilities HM Government 2014

  • Information Sharing; Advice for Practitioners Providing Safeguarding Services to Children, Young People, Parents and Carers; HM Government 2015

  • Working Together to Safeguarding Children; a guide to inter-agency working to safeguard and promote the welfare of children; HM Government 2015

This policy should be read alongside our policies and procedures on:

  • Recruitment, induction and training

  • Role of the designated safeguarding officer

  • Dealing with disclosures and concerns about a child or young person

  • Managing allegations against staff and volunteers

  • Recording and information sharing

  • Code of conduct for staff and volunteers

  • Safer recruitment

  • E-safety

  • Anti-bullying

  • Complaints

  • Whistleblowing

  • Health and safety

  • Training, supervision and support

  • Lone working policy and procedure

  • Quality assurance

The aims of the policy are:

  • to ensure the practice of safe recruitment in checking the suitability of all staff including volunteers working with young people

  • to raise awareness of child protection and to equip children and young people with the skills needed to keep them safe

  • to develop and implement procedures for reporting cases or suspected cases of abuse

  • to support children and young people who have been identified as ‘at risk’ in accordance with the agreed child protection plan

  • to establish a safe environment in which children and young people can learn and develop

Key principles and issues:

  • to establish and maintain an environment where children and young people feel secure, are respected and encouraged to talk and are listened to

  • to ensure that children and young people know that there are adults in the church whom they can approach if they are worried

  • To ensure that there are opportunities for discussion in personal, social, health and economics (PSHE) for children and young people to develop the skills they need to stay safe from abuse

Procedures set out by the Local Safeguarding Children Board (Croydon Safeguarding Children Board) will be followed and the guidance by the DfE taken into consideration:

  • to ensure the Church has a designated senior person for the protection and safety of children and young people who has received appropriate training and support for this role

  • to ensure there is a nominated person from the governing body of the Church for child protection

  • to ensure every member of the Church staff including temporary staff and volunteers knows the name of the designated person responsible for child protection and their role

  • to ensure all staff, volunteers and church members understand their personal responsibility in being alert to the signs of abuse and responsibility for referring any concerns to the designated senior person responsible for child protection

  • to ensure all Church members and parents/carers have an understanding of the responsibility placed upon the Church, its members and staff and volunteers for child protection by setting out its obligations in the Church operational manual

  • to develop effective links with the relevant agencies and co-operate as required with their enquiries of child protection matters; this may include attendance at case conferences

  • to keep written records of concerns about children and young people, even where there no need to report the matter immediately

  • to ensure all records are kept securely in accordance with Data Protection Act 1998 in locked locations

  • to establish and then follow procedures where an allegation of abuse is made against a member of the Church, its staff or volunteers

  • to ensure safe recruitment procedures of staff and volunteers are always followed

We recognise that:

  • the welfare of the child is paramount, as enshrined in the Children Act 1989

  • all children, regardless of age, disability, gender, racial heritage, religious belief, sexual orientation or identity, have a right to equal protection from all types of harm or abuse

  • some children are additionally vulnerable because of the impact of previous experiences, their level of dependency, communication needs or other issues

  • working in partnership with children, young people, their parents, carers and other agencies is essential in promoting young people’s welfare.

We will seek to keep children and young people safe by:

  • valuing them, listening to and respecting them

  • appointing a Designated Safeguarding Officer (DSO) for children and young people, a deputy and a lead board member for safeguarding

  • adopting child protection and safeguarding practices through procedures and a code of conduct for staff and volunteers

  • developing and implementing an effective e-safety policy and related procedures

  • providing effective management for staff and volunteers through supervision, support, training and quality assurance measures

  • recruiting staff and volunteers safely, ensuring all necessary checks are made

  • recording and storing information professionally and securely, and sharing information about safeguarding and good practice with children, their families, staff and volunteers via leaflets, posters, one-to-one discussions

  • using our safeguarding procedures to share concerns and relevant information with agencies who need to know, and involving children, young people, parents, families and carers appropriately.

  • using our procedures to manage any allegations against staff and volunteers appropriately

  • creating and maintaining an anti-bullying environment and ensuring that we have a policy and procedure to help us deal effectively with any bullying that does arise

  • ensuring that we have effective complaints and whistleblowing measures in place

  • ensuring that we provide a safe physical environment for our children, young people, staff and volunteers, by applying health and safety measures in accordance with the law and regulatory guidance

Policy Procedures

Everyone who works in any way with children, young people or vulnerable adults has responsibility to protect them from harm.

We therefore believe that all children, young people and vulnerable adults in our care should be safe and prevented from coming to any harm. In order to achieve this, all management committee members, the diaconate and volunteers will go through a vetting procedure (Criminal Record Bureau enhanced check) to check their suitability for working with children, young people and vulnerable adults. The diaconate have appointed a designated lead and two designated safeguarding officers to be responsible for these issues on their behalf (see below).Training will be undertaken in basic Child Protection and vulnerable persons procedures, most importantly by the designated lead (or another representative in his/her absence).

If you have concerns that a child,young person or vulnerable adult has suffered or is at risk of suffering significant harm, you have a duty to share your concerns with the designated person/s who will take the appropriate action. All matters concerning child protection issues will be treated within the bounds of our Confidentiality Policy. Everyone working with children or the vulnerable will have a copy of this policy and procedures.

It is not the responsibility of our organisation to undertake enquiries.

Any referrals should be made through the designated person/s:

Designated Safeguarding Officer (DSO)

Name: Anne Millar

Phone/email: 07708 287398 – anne-millar@hotmail.com

Deputy Designated Safeguarding Officer (DSO)

Name: Cress Davidson

Phone/email: 07792 828926 – cressdavidson@btinternet.com

Or

Senior lead for Safeguarding

Name: Patti Boyle

Phone/email 07842 845176 – boylep.advocates@gmail.com

ABUSE AND NEGLECT (DEFINITIONS)

A child is “anyone who has not yet reached their 18th birthday. ‘Children’ therefore means ‘children and young people’ throughout. The fact that a child has reached 16 years of age, is living independently or is in further education, is a member of the armed forces, is in hospital or in custody in the secure estate for children and young people, does not change his or her status or entitlement to services or protection under the Children Act 1989. (See also Children’s Act 2004).

A vulnerable adult is a person “who is or may be in need of community care services by reason of mental or other disability, age or illness, and who is or may be unable to take care of him or herself, or unable to protect him or herself against significant harm or exploitation”. (See “No Secrets”- Section 2.3.)

Somebody may abuse or neglect a child, young person or vulnerable adult by inflicting harm, or by failing to act to prevent harm. Children, young people or vulnerable adults, may be abused in a family or in an institutional or community setting: by those known to them or, more rarely, by a stranger. – (DOH-Working Together to Safeguard Children1999).

What is Abuse?

The following definitions are taken from the Department of Health document

(Working Together to Safeguard Children,1999). (No Secrets – DOH 2000).

  • Physical abuse– including hitting, slapping, pushing, kicking, misuse of medication, restraint, inappropriate sanctions.

  • Sexual abuse– including rape, sexual assault, sexual acts to which a person has not consented, could not consent or was pressurised into consenting.

  • Psychological abuse– including emotional abuse, threats of harm or abandonment, deprivation of contact, humiliation, blaming, controlling, intimidation, coercion, harassment, verbal abuse, isolation, withdrawal from services or supportive networks.

  • Financial or material abuse – including theft, fraud, exploitation, pressure in connection with wills, property or inheritance or financial transactions, or the misuse or misappropriation of property, possessions or benefits.

  • Neglect and acts of omission – including ignoring medical or physical care needs, failure to provide access to appropriate health, social care or educational services, the withholding of the necessities of life such as medication, adequate nutrition, and heating.

  • Discriminatory abuse – including racist, sexist, that based on a person’s disability and other forms of harassment, slurs or similar treatment.

  • Institutional abuse – neglect and poor professional practice. This may take the form of isolated incidents of poor or unsatisfactory professional practice at one end of the spectrum, through to pervasive ill treatment or gross misconduct at the other.

(No Secrets – DOH 2000)

What do I do if I suspect a child, young person or vulnerable adult is being harmed?

The welfare of the individual/s whether child, young person or vulnerable adult is paramount and MUST always come first. ANY concerns that a child, young person or vulnerable adult is being harmed should be reported. This can be very difficult but the welfare of the individual is paramount.

The Procedures for Making a Referral for Children and Young People

If somebody believes that a child may be suffering or may be at risk of suffering significant harm, then he/she should always refer his or her concerns to the local authority’s Children’s and Young People’s Service or to the police. The NSPCC can be contacted, and they will transfer the case to the local services.

Children’s Services will clarify with the referrer:

  1. the nature of concerns;

  2. how and why they have arisen;

  3. what appear to be the needs of the child and family;

  4. whether there are concerns about significant harm,

  5. what is their foundation, and

  6. whether the child/ren may need urgent action to make them safe from

harm.

When a case constitutes, or may constitute, a criminal offence against a child, Children’s Services will inform the police child protection unit at the earliest opportunity.

The referrer and the Children’s Services Directorate should be clear about who will be taking what action, or that no further action will be taken. The decision should be recorded by the Children’s Services Directorate, and by the referrer. The referrer should confirm the referral in writing within 24 hours (an email is sufficient).

The Children’s Services Directorate will:

  1. discuss with any referring professional/service

  2. look at any existing records, including SSID

  3. involve other professionals and services as necessary

  4. make an enquiry to the child protection register at the Child Protection Team and decide on the next course of action within 24 hours.

INITIAL ASSESSMENT OF THE CHILD’S NEEDS

Children’s Services will commence an initial assessment which should be completed within a maximum of seven working days of the date of referral. However, the initial assessment period may be very brief if the criteria for initiating s.47 enquiries are met.

Section 47 of the Children Act 1989 requires the local authority to make enquiries to enable it to decide whether action is required to safeguard and promote the well-being of the child. Children’s Social Care will carry out an assessment as a means of conducting the Section 47 enquiries.

The purpose of the Assessment is to determine whether the child is suffering, or likely to suffer, Significant Harm and to assess whether action is required to safeguard and promote the child’s welfare. Health, education and other services have a statutory duty to help Children’s Social Care to carry out the Section 47 Enquiry. Social workers will work with the police in the case of a criminal investigation.

The purpose of the Assessment is to determine whether the child is suffering, or likely to suffer, Significant Harm and to assess whether action is required to safeguard and promote the child’s welfare. Health, education and other services have a statutory duty to help Children’s Social Care to carry out the Section 47 Enquiry. Social workers will work with the police in the case of a criminal investigation.

  • Is suffering Significant Harm through abuse or neglect;

  • Is likely to suffer significant harm in the future.

The timing of such referrals should reflect the level of perceived risk of harm, not longer than within one working day of identification or disclosure of harm or risk of harm.

In urgent situations, out of office hours, the referral could be made to Children’s Social Care Emergency Out of Hours Service (EOOHS).

The family, the original referrer, and other professionals and services involved in the assessment, should be told what action has been taken, consistent with respecting the confidentiality of the child and family concerned, and not jeopardising further action in respect of child protection concerns (which may include police investigations).

MAKING THE REFERRAL

If you are seriously concerned about the welfare of a child or young person,

you can ring 0208 255 2888. This will put you in touch with Croydon Council’s duty social worker -you can speak to the social worker in confidence.

You can also call the police at any time on 999.

What records need to be kept?

  1. All concerns need to be kept as a clear written record;

  2. observations of the facts, not opinions.

  3. If a child confides in you, record what they said, using their exact words. This is important for any investigations that may follow.

  4. Do not question the child; allow them to freely recall their experience and always take what the child says seriously.

  5. Do not promise to keep a secret.

  6. Tell the child you will need to pass the information on.

  7. Do not tell anyone else about this, unless you are required to tell the Minister and the designated senior Safeguarding Lead.

Think of the possible consequences if a child confided in you, or you suspect signs of abuse and you made the decision not to pass the information on – Leave the decision to the Child Protection Professionals.

What do I do if an allegation is made about me or another member of our organisation?

If an allegation is made against a member of the organisation, the case will be investigated as any other allegations are. Anyone with a concern has a duty to refer it to the Child Protection Team.

Confidentiality

Do not discuss issues surrounding a child with anyone, your partner, best friend or another member of the organisation, unless you are required to inform the Minister and/or the designated Safeguarding lead. If it was your child, would you want them to be talked about?

Parents/Carers of the child/ren

If you have a concern, you should work with the designated Safeguarding lead person to, wherever possible, share your concern with the parent or person with responsibility for the child, unless by doing so it will place them at increased risk of significant harm. If in doubt, contact the London Safeguarding Children’s Board on (Tel; 020 7934 9714)

Training Supervision and Support

This means:

That all staff or volunteers employed by the Church who have access to children, young people, vulnerable adults and their families or carers, and those who have access to sensitive information, will have induction and on-going training so that they know of the appropriate procedures and personnel in place, and of their role in responding to concerns about children, young people, vulnerable adults and other safeguarding matters. Additionally, line management and/or supervision is in place to appropriately support staff.

Essential CPD will be undertaken annually or as and when Legislative changes require this. For further details of any available courses or for further information, please contact the designated lead officer or speak to the Local Safeguarding Children’s Board (Tel: 020 7934 9714)

A full copy of Local Safeguarding Board procedures is available for viewing in libraries, schools, Children’s Services departments of Croydon Council.

Safeguarding Vulnerable Adults

Legislative background

In 2000 the Department of Health and the Home Office published the document ‘No Secrets: guidance on developing and implementing multi-agency policy and procedures to protect vulnerable adults from abuse’. In 2005, the document ‘Safeguarding Adults’ was published by the Association of Directors of Social Services to give a national framework of standards for good practice and outcomes in adult protection work. The publication’s aim has been to serve as a toolkit for organisations providing health and care services for adults to develop evidence-based good practice framework to ensure the safety of vulnerable adults. The ‘No Secrets Review’ published in 2009 identified four key messages from consultation with stakeholders:

  • Safeguarding requires empowerment/the ‘victim’s’ voice needs to be heard

  • Empowerment is everybody’s business, but safeguarding decisions are not.

  • Safeguarding Adults is not the same as Child Protection

  • The participation/representation of people who lack capacity is also important (DoH, 2009)

The Care Act 2014, is an important piece of law that protects vulnerable people who lack capacity to make certain decisions.

The Mental Capacity Act is a law that protects vulnerable adults (aged sixteen and over) who might lack the mental capacity to make particular decisions for themselves.

The Croydon Safeguarding Adults Board (CSAB), has a variety of committees that report to it, and carries out the work that the CSAB requires. Please visit: www.croydonsab.co.uk for more information on these committees and the work of the CSAB.

Safeguarding vulnerable adults is everyone’s business. It relies on people understanding and doing the following things;

  • being aware of the risks of abuse and neglect that vulnerable adults can face

  • being aware of what constitutes abuse

  • knowing what help is available

  • understanding their responsibilities

  • working together to report and investigate concerns

  • working together to prevent abuse and neglect

The aims of this Church are:

  • To minimise the risk of abuse to vulnerable adults and to protect vulnerable adults effectively where abuse has occurred or may have occurred.

  • To ensure Multi-agency partners work effectively together to develop and implement Safeguarding Adults strategies, policies and procedures.

The following principles will underpin all of our work with vulnerable adults

  • Everyone has the right to live his or her life free from violence, fear and abuse

  • Everyone has the right to be protected from harm and exploitation

  • Everyone has the right to independence, which carries with it a degree of risk

PROCEDURES RELATED TO HEALTH AND SAFETY TO ENSURE CHILDREN, YOUNG PEOPLE and VULNERABLE ADULTS ARE SAFE WHILE AT CHURCH

It is the belief of the Church that all people while in our care should be in a safe, clean, well-maintained and caring environment.

In order to do this, the following points will be considered and, if appropriate, put into place. These points are intended to safeguard employees, volunteers and visitors to the building or elsewhere.

All adults, staff, volunteers and visitors will be aware of and respect the organisation’s safety policies.

  1. Regular checks will be carried out on the premises and any outdoor areas.

  1. Any items of equipment used for activities will be regularly checked for damage and safety and discarded or replaced if necessary.

  1. Adequate provision for fire safety will be put in place. There should be agreed procedures for fire drills and maintenance of equipment.

  1. All dangerous materials and substances will be kept out of reach.

  1. Care will be taken in respect of heating appliances, low level sockets, windows, doors and staircases.

  1. Electrical equipment will be regularly checked by qualified people. Free-standing equipment will be safe and stable and electrical outlets fitted with appropriate covers.

  1. Young children will not meet in rooms that contain chairs that are stacked more than 4 high. Volunteers are asked not to stack chairs more than 4 high at any time.

  1. Food hygiene standards will be observed. Training in this area will be sought and given.

  1. Every Church session will have an adult in attendance who has a first aid qualification. Volunteers will be offered paediatric first aid training.

  1. An accident book will be kept and all accidents will be recorded. In case of accident/incident, a designated worker will have access to a telephone at all times during children’s activity sessions.

  1. Records of the children’s activities will be kept, monitored and evaluated on a sessional basis.

  1. Permission for a child’s attendance at a children’s activity and any medical information will be sought from the parents using the appropriate forms.

  1. If a group of children consists of girls, there will be a woman present

  1. Only approved workers will accompany children to the toilet.

  1. Casual and unvetted visitors will not accompany children to the toilet.

  1. All activities will be organised appropriately for the age and ability of the children.

  1. Specific parental/guardian consent forms will be completed for events or visits held out of normal Church meeting times or venue.

  1. All events and visits will be well planned and risk assessments carried out.

  1. Systems will be put in place to ensure no child under 7 years of age leaves the premises without an adult carer in attendance.

  1. The use of transport for events, activities and visits will be in line with current legislation.

  1. Appropriate public liability insurance will be in place for Church activities.

  1. The following appropriate ratio of staff to children will be adhered to.

              1. 0-2years 1 staff member for every 3 children.

              2. 2-3years 1 staff member for every 4 children.

              3. 3 years+ 1 staff member for every 8 children.

Please note – People under 18 years old cannot be included in staff ratios and will not be solely in charge of a group of children.

  1. If a safeguarding concern is reported to a DSO, the DSO will then at their earliest convenience complete a safeguarding report for from the church office and then hand deliver it to the Senior Lead for Safeguarding as soon as possible.

  2. This form will then be scanned and uploaded securely online (in line with GDPR guidelines), the original copy will be destroyed.

  3. Where appropriate the Senior Lead for Safeguarding will liaise with the church minister or senior leader to discuss the next steps.

Checklist for Reporting Suspected Abuse

To be completed by nominated person responsible for reporting allegations or concerns

(copies of this are available in the church community office)

Name of child/adult:

Age and date of birth:

Ethnicity:

Religion:

First language:

Physical or learning difficulties (if any):

Resident parent/carer name:

Home address:

Post code:

Telephone number:

Are you reporting your own concerns or passing on those of someone else? Give details.

  • Any physical signs?

  • Behavioural signs?

  • Indirect signs?

Have you spoken to the child/adult?

If so, what was said?

Have you spoken to the parents/carers?

If so, what was said?

Has anyone been alleged to be the abuser?

If so, give details.

Have you consulted anyone else?

Give details of who you reported to, their status and role and date of reporting.

Details of any advice or instruction given by this person:

Your name and position (please print)

Your signature:

Date:

Equality and Diversity

Equality is based on the idea of fairness whilst recognising that everyone is different, and diversity is about the ways in which people differ and about recognising that differences are a natural

part of society. The Church expects that all members, staff and volunteers who come into contact with children, young people and vulnerable adults treat them as individuals and make them feel respected and valued as an essential part of our commitment to safeguarding children, young people and vulnerable adults.

Review

This document will be reviewed as legislative changes require.

Safer Employment

Robust procedures are in place to ensure that staff who have access to children, young people and vulnerable adults or access to sensitive information about children, young people and vulnerable adults are employed safely.

This means:

There is a culture throughout the Church that enables safeguarding issues to be addressed.

Recruitment and vetting procedures prevent unsuitable people from having contact with children, young people and vulnerable adults. https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/disclosure-and-barring-service

Staff who work or have contact with children, young people, vulnerable adults and their families or carers have appropriate safeguarding and safe working practices training, including induction, consistent with their role and function. This training will reflect the necessity for effective multi-agency and inter-professional working – both within the Church and with other organisations. The content and standard of this training will be in accordance with rules and obligations set down by Croydon Safeguarding Children Board and/or Croydon Safeguarding Adults Board.

Safe working practices are promoted and poor and unsafe practice is challenged, for further information go to National Documents and Guidance”, and “Guidance for Safer Working Practice for Adults who Work with Children and Young People”.

Allegations or concerns about staff relating to children or young people are handled effectively and in accordance with ‘Working Together to Safeguard Children’,) 6.24, Appendix 5 (DCSF2006)

and the Croydon Safeguarding Children Board management of allegations procedures

Allegations or concerns about staff relating to vulnerable adults are handled in accordance with the Croydon Safeguarding Adults Board Multi-agency Safeguarding Adult policy.

Effective arrangements such as a whistle blowing policy, which explicitly describes arrangements for sharing concerns about the behaviour of colleagues and other members of staff are described

at induction and training and well-publicised by the Church to its employees and volunteers.

.

E-safety Policy

Background

Article 17 of the United Nations Convention on Rights of the Child (UNCRC) states that;

Children have the right to get information that is important to their health and well-being. Governments should encourage mass media radio, television, newspaper and internet content sources – to provide information that children can understand and to not promote materials that could harm children. The Sexual Offences Act 2003 – includes a number of offences related to child abuse online.

The Church is aware that the understanding and use of Internet, Digital and Mobile Technology (IDMT) is essential to helping and encouraging every child to reach their full potential. We recognise that we have to raise awareness and educate those involved in children’s welfare and development about the dangers that children and young people can face in the online world, whilst accepting that safety in the online world is not the removal or banning of access to digital technologies in itself but rather education and training, for both children and adults, around responsible use and potential dangers.

All organisations providing any services for children and young people have a responsibility to ensure that they understand e-safety issues, know how to help children stay safe online and have procedures in place to support those working with children in knowing how to respond when concerns arise.

Risks

Children and young people do not always recognise the inherent dangers of the internet and often do not understand that online behaviour may have offline consequences. Despite this, digital technologies can offer them opportunities to learn and develop, communicate, be creative and be entertained. The advantages of the internet can and should out-weigh the disadvantages. However, we now have a greater understanding to the extent of the risks the digital world can pose to children.

The risks inherent in the use of new technologies relate to content, contact and conduct. The risk is often determined by behaviours rather than the technologies themselves:

Objectives

The Church is committed to;

  • Ensuring that all children, young people, parents/carers and foster carers should be made aware and equipped with the knowledge and skills to safeguard themselves in the online/digital world;

  • Ensuring that all Church staff and volunteers who work with children and young people have access to effective policies and procedures and effective training to safeguard children at risk through online activity;

  • Ensuring that all Church staff and volunteers know how to respond when concerns arise regarding the misuse of communications technology

As Internet Digital and Mobile Technologies (IDMT) are constantly changing there is information available to help children and young people stay safe on line, the following sites may help in developing an e -safety understanding of policy and procedures:

www.thinkuknow.co.uk

and

www.ceop.co.uk

The Child Exploitation and Online protection (CEOP) centre delivers a multi-agency service dedicated to tackling and bringing offenders to account either directly or with local and international police forces and working with children and parents to deliver their ThinkuKnow internet safety programme.

http://www.iwf.org.uk/

The Internet Watch Foundation was established in 1996 by UK internet industry to provide an internet hotline for public and IT professionals to report potentially illegal online content with the intention of having the offending material removed.

www.pitda.co.uk Parenting in the digital age.

NSPCC Share aware – campaign and materials to download online

The British Education Communications Technologies Agency, BECTA (2007) Now closed but they established the frameworks to identify some of the issues which are summarised below;

Forms of Abuse through Internet Digital and Mobile Technologies (IDMT)

  • Children and young people have been ‘groomed’ online by adults (often pretending to be those who care) with the ultimate aim of exploiting them sexually.

  • Children / young people have been bullied by other young people via social networking sites, websites, instant messaging and text messages; this is often known as ‘cyber-bullying’.

  • Inappropriate (i.e. threatening, indecent or pornographic) images of children and young people have been taken, uploaded and circulated via social network websites, mobile telephones and video broadcasting

websites such as You Tube, often by other young people. This is a criminal offence under s45 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003.

  • The dangers attached to gang culture can rapidly accelerate online as many gangs ‘advertise’ or promote themselves via websites or social networking sites or if threats of violence, threats to an individual’s life or threats of retaliation are posted online by opposing gang members.

  • Unsuitable websites and images can easily be accessed online.

  • Images of physical abuse, crime, racism, self-harm, terrorism or on physical violence to influence young minds.

Ignoring the dangers that children / young people can face would lead to serious gaps in our responsibilities towards safeguarding and child protection. Security is a complex matter and all queries should be referred to the person responsible for IDMT at the Church secretary Steve Harrington. Where there is uncertainty please refer to the appropriate agency for advice.

All Church staff, volunteers and service users (including young people) will be made aware at induction and through training, that abuse of recognised policies and procedures could result in a withdrawal of technology provision and potential legal / disciplinary action being instigated against the perpetrator.

All users without exception

  • must be compliant to an Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) for example:

  • not act unreasonably and be inconsiderate of other service users.

  • must take responsibility for their own network use

  • Computer and internet access should have appropriate security and anti-virus protection.

  • Must ensure to not disable or circumvent security measures –filters, encryption etc.

  • Must not have personal and sensitive electronic data taken off-site without being security encrypted and authorised by IDMT management.

  • Must not have unapproved software being introduced into local networks and not authorised by the Church IDMT management.

Filtering standards

Levels of internet access and supervision must be age appropriate and suitable for the young people. Filtering systems should be secure but adaptable.

Older children and professionals may sometimes require temporary access to a normally restricted website in order to carry out research for a project or study. Providing this can be justified by management, restrictions may be temporarily removed however access should be monitored.

Contact details

Designated Safeguarding Officer (DSO)

Name: Anne Millar

Phone/email: 07708 287398 – anne-millar@hotmail.com

Deputy Designated Safeguarding Officer (DSO)

Name: Cress Davidson

Phone/email: 07792 828926 – cressdavidson@btinternet.com

Or

Senior lead for Safeguarding

Name: Patti Boyle

Phone/email 07842 845176 – boylep.advocates@gmail.com

CEOP: www.ceop.police.uk

NSPCC Helpline : 0808 800 5000

We are committed to reviewing our policy and good practice annually.

This policy was last reviewed on: 6th May 2018

Signed: ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(this should be signed by the most senior person in your organisation eg the safeguarding lead on your board of trustees)

To report a crime call the Metropolitan Police by phoning 101.

In an emergency phone 999

Pastor: Nick Graves
Old Lodge Lane Baptist Church
Reedham Park Avenue
Purley, Surrey CR8 4BQ
020 8668 6260
office@ollbc.org.uk