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Safeguarding Policy

Downloadable version: Safeguarding Policy

  1. As members of the Sussex County Association of Church Bellringers (SCACR), we are committed to the safeguarding, care and nurture of all our members, particularly children and young people.
  2. Responsibility for safeguarding of children and young people who ring bells in our churches is held within the belfry by the tower captain and all members of the band.
  3. We are committed to conforming to parish safeguarding policies and also to Church of England policies such as:
    1. House of Bishops’ Policy statement ’Promoting a Safer Church’ https://www.churchofengland.org/sites/default/files/2017-11/cofe-policy-statement.pdf
    2. ‘Managing concerns or allegations against church officers’ https://www.churchofengland.org/sites/default/files/2017-11/responding-to-assessing-and-managing-concerns-or-allegations-against-church-officers.pdf
    3. ‘Safer environments and activities’ https://www.churchofengland.org/sites/default/files/2019-11/Safer%20Environment%20and%20Activities%20Oct19_0.pdf
    4. We also follow the Government guidance ‘Working together to Safeguard Children’ 2018 https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/779401/Working_Together_to_Safeguard-Children.pdf
  4. Tower Captains and those responsible for SCACR training sessions must carefully select those who care for and teach bell ringing to children and young people.
    1. We will ensure that those who take this responsibility have their background checked through the Disclosure and Barring Service, amongst other tools, by their local parish safeguarding officer or incumbent, or by the diocese, as required by the ‘Church of England Safer Recruitment Policy 2016’. https://www.churchofengland.org/sites/default/files/2017-11/safeguarding%20safer_recruitment_practice_guidance_2016.pdf
    2. All ringers should undertake the safeguarding training All ringers should complete the online safeguarding training course ‘Basic Awareness’ C0.
    3. Tower captains and those who teach ringers should complete the online safeguarding training course ‘Safeguarding Foundations’ C1.
    4. Courses are available on C of E portal. It is accessible via this web address https://safeguardingtraining.cofeportal.org. The certificates awarded should be retained and displayed in the ringing chamber.
    5. Teaching sessions will always have more than one adult in attendance
  5. All SCACR members should recognise that it is possible that a member of the ringing community could cause harm to a child or young person. We understand that reporting of any concerns or allegations is paramount. We will report to the safeguarding officer of the local church. Alternatively, if the alleged abuse occurs during an association event then concerns will be reported to the association safeguarding officer (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.). We will co-operate fully with statutory agencies during any investigation concerning a member of the bell ringing community.
  6. We will be vigilant to ensure we recognise the signs of abuse. We will seek to ensure that any child, young person or adult who has suffered abuse is offered support that meets their needs.
  7. Online learning or social sessions will be on open forums such as zoom where a number of people are involved. Adults will not enter into virtual 1:1 conversation with young people apart from confirming administrative details such as times of events or suchlike.
  8. The SCACR Website and all SCACR publications will not publish material which could be detrimental to the interests of children and vulnerable adults and will abide by the normal media conventions and recommendations of the press complaints commission.
  9. No material will be published which is restricted due to being the subject of legal proceedings or resulting judgements. Where material is published that specifically relates to youth activities, accompanying photographs and names will only be published where the general consent of the parents or guardians of any minors involved has been given. Such consent will be deemed to cover the use of the material on the SCACR website and in all SCACR publications, but not its transmission to or use by other persons or sites
  10. Detailed guidance written in June 2019 can be found on the website for the Central Council for Church Bell Ringers. https://cccbr.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/SM_Safeguarding_PlusAppendices_2019_Ver_2-Guide-plus-appendices-1.pdf
  11. Tower Captains should ensure they adhere to Appendix C in the document in point 11 above, ‘Good Practice for Maintaining a Safe Environment in the Belfry for Young People’.
  12. We will review this policy annually and as part of this process will ensure that all our procedures are up to date and that they conform to national, diocesan and parish safeguarding requirements.

This document was reviewed in December 2020.
The next review will be in October 2021 ready for ratification at the November General Committee Meeting.

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