Safeguarding is an area that is constantly developing, always seeks to learn from good practice and has to respond to changing regulatory demands.  The Church of Ireland has a number of key safeguarding policies which are available on this website.
These policies are reviewed in an ongoing way and all changes made to the policy are updated on the website. You can track these changes HERE.

How do you know what needs to be done to get Safeguarding right?
There are a number of administrative responsibilities that must be fulfilled at different levels to ensure each local parish is compliant with legislation and the Church of Ireland policies for children and adults at risk of abuse.

Parish Annual Safeguarding Return Forms
Please use the relevant  link below:

REPUBLIC OF IRELAND – Online Parish Safeguarding Return Form

NORTHERN IRELAND – Online Parish Safeguarding Return Form 

The documents below are a checklist of the questions you are asked in the online return forms and indicate what is required to be compliant with legislation and good practice. They include web links to the appropriate resources for the information you may need when filling out your online return.

Safeguarding Trust Diocesan Support Teams
The Bishop of the diocese and diocesan council(s) must set up a Safeguarding Trust diocesan support team. This team will:

  1. Undertake the evidence based, triennial audit, of the implementation of Safeguarding Trust in parishes and diocesan bodies.
  2. They will also put in place a plan for every parish and diocesan body for action arising from the audit.
  3. Provide support to parishes and diocesan bodies with the implementation of Safeguarding Trust and provide training in line with the Diocesan Training Strategy

The Bishop of the diocese and diocesan council(s) shall determine the composition of the diocesan support team and ensure that suitable people with the appropriate skills are appointed. The work of the diocesan support teams is supported by the Safeguarding Board in conjunction with the Safeguarding Officers.

Select Vestries
Select Vestries, as people who have control of the parish premises, have a duty under the Safety Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005 and other legislation such as the Occupiers Liability Act 1995 to ensure that the premises are safe.

Select Vestries should ensure that a Health & Safety statement is in place and that an annual Safety audit of the premises and a Health & Safety risk assessment of the activities is undertaken.


The documents below are also provided for your information.  Please note that the requirement for a Child Safeguarding Statement is in the Republic of Ireland only.