Every effort is taken to safeguard the welfare of children, young people and vulnerable adults who are involved in church-based activities and other activities on church premises.
Children and young people need to be respected as individuals, and protected in their vulnerability – as do all who are vulnerable, irrespective of age.
Safeguarding has been approved by the Methodist Conference as the policy and practice to be adopted and used in all Methodist Churches with regard to children and young people under 18 years of age, and is also to be applied to the care of vulnerable adults.
All those working with children and young people (and/or vulnerable adults) at our church will have been appointed by Church Council, and will already have obtained necessary clearance through the Disclosure and Barring Service (where required to do so), and hold on up to date certificate.
All those working with children and young people (and/or vulnerable adults), together with all responsible church officers, are also required to attend the latest Foundation Module of Safeguarding training. Ongoing training is provided through the Norwich Circuit.
However, various church activities are open to the public and are therefore not to be understood as a “regulated activity”. At such public events, under terms of Methodist Insurance, parents remain responsible for their children whilst on the premises.
We are supported by the East Anglia District via the Safeguarding Group, and in-house training is available for all workers/helpers through the Methodist Church’s modular “Creating Safer Space” programme. Additional training/re-training may sometimes be accessed via the Local Authority’s appointed Local Safeguarding Children’s Board (formerly ACPC).
We have a comprehensive Safeguarding Policy, rewritten in line with the 2010 Handbook, which may be viewed at the premises – revised in the light of recent and expected changes. For local information please speak to our Safeguarding Officers – Janice Norman or Paula Callam – or to the Minister.
[The Methodist Church first published its welfare standard, “Safeguarding” in 1994, in direct response to the Children Act 1989 and Home Office guidance for voluntary organisations involved with children (“Safe From Harm”, 1993).
While some aspects of the Vetting and Barring Scheme were put on hold, pending detailed instructions from the former Independent Safeguarding Authority, and more-recently revised through the Protection of Freedoms Act, the Methodist Church has continued to push ahead its programme “Creating Safer Space” in order to raise standards across the country.
Further revisions have enabled us to incorporate latest requirements for local good practice, and a fully-updated 2010 Handbook covers various aspects of Safeguarding and forms the basis of our continuing efforts to ensure high standards. A national programme of CSS training is now a formal requirement for all working with children young people and vulnerable adults. The Foundation Module was implemented through 2012. The additional Leadership Module became available in 2013, and a Leadership session delivered here on 18th April.
The former Criminal Records Bureau and Independent Safeguarding Authority have now been replaced by a single Disclosure and Barring Service, or “DBS“.]