Parish Safeguarding Representatives
To be responsible for ensuring that the parish community is aware of the importance of protecting children and vulnerable adults.
To promote good and safe practice and advise on appropriate and non-appropriate behaviour in the parish community in respect of activities involving children and vulnerable adults.
To develop good links of communication throughout the parish community and be familiar with the various activities in which children and vulnerable adults are to be involved.
To maintain regular communication with the Diocesan safeguarding team and attend training such as provided.
To be familiar with National and Diocesan policies and procedures.
To act as the central point for concerns to be shared, then recorded confidentially and passed on to the Diocesan safeguarding team in respect of any issues or concerns relating to child protection or adult safeguarding.
To be familiar with, have access to, and be able to display information in the parish in respect of national helplines and Church policies.
To oversee the safer recruitment of volunteers working with children and vulnerable adults including the DBS process, in line with national policies
It is important to have processes in place to help and support Parish Safeguarding Representatives to carry out the responsibilities of their role. By ‘support’ we mean the provision of information, advice and guidance, and guaranteed access to a named person responsible for this. It also means providing a listening ear when necessary.
It is essential that people carrying out safeguarding roles have access to regular support, when needed, to assist them to perform their role well, to reduce any risk of stress and that they feel able to ask for help when they need it.
Support is primarily provided by the Safeguarding Coordinator, Safeguarding Support Officer, Parish Priests and Priests in Charge, and is available by telephone or email contact, through regular communication sent out by the safeguarding office or via in person meetings and training events.
If a Parish Safeguarding Representative is encountering difficulties with the responsibility of their role, they will be able to discuss any problems with the Safeguarding Coordinator or Safeguarding Support Officer.
The Parish Priest or Priest in Charge is responsible for identifying any new Parish Safeguarding Representatives. Following their approval, the Diocesan safeguarding office will commence the recruitment process which includes initial contact with the interested volunteer(s), providing information regarding the role as well as:
- Two references confirming suitability
- DBS application
- Completion of online training in child protection and adult safeguarding
Our induction meetings include:
- Requirements of the role
- Safeguarding polices and practice guidance including how to respond to allegations and concerns and creating a safer environment
- Safer recruitment including DBS applications
- Safeguarding promotion including how to respond to victims and survivors of abuse
- Training and development
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Please visit the Catholic Safeguarding Standards Agency website to access DBS forms required for our safer recruitment process. Most frequently used forms include the DBS 1 (volunteer registration form), DBS 2 (volunteer reference proforma) DBS 3a and 3b, DBS 4 and DBS 17.
To request copies of the DBS application form, please email email@example.com
Additional resources to support safer recruitment can be found below:
Click the links below to access the current role descriptions:
The RC Diocese of Northampton adheres to the national safeguarding policies for the Catholic Church in England and Wales, as part of the One Church approach, relating to the management of concerns and allegations, safer recruitment, DBS processing, handling of DBS complaints and whistleblowing.
The following policy documents are also considered to be of relevance:
Further support is available to assist in creating a good culture across the Church in the form of national safeguarding practice and can be found here
Practical guidance documents considered to be of relevance include:
Further relevant national forms to assist with ensuring good local safeguarding practice is embedded include:
In order for safeguarding to be embedded within the culture of our Church, it needs to be encouraged, spoken about, advertised and experienced as a living concept. The following resources are available