Getting It Right
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.
In 2020 a new online return form was piloted and is a ‘checklist’ of what is required to be compliant with legislation and with good practice. These checklists/returns forms are attached below.
There is one for Northern Ireland and one for the Republic of Ireland and they include web links to the appropriate resources for your information.
The bishop of the diocese and diocesan council(s) must set up a Safeguarding Trust diocesan support team. This team will:
- Undertake the evidence based, triennial audit, of the implementation of Safeguarding Trust in parishes and diocesan bodies.
- They will also put in place a plan for every parish and diocesan body for action arising from the audit.
- 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, 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.