Policy: Safeguarding Adults

Parish of Bishops Hatfield St Michael and All Angels

Policy on the Safeguarding of Adults in the Church

This policy was adopted by Bishops Hatfield: St Michael and All Angels at a Parochial Church Council meeting held on Monday 13th May 2019
St Michael and All Angels adopts the guidelines of the Church of England and the Diocese.

This church appoints Nikki Spencer to represent the concerns and views of vulnerable people at our meetings and to outside bodies.

As members of this parish we commit ourselves to respectful pastoral care for all adults to whom we minister we:
• ensure that all people feel welcomed, respected and safe from abuse
• commit ourselves to promoting safe practice by those in positions
• encourage adults who may be vulnerable to lead as independent a life as possible, to choose how to lead their life, and to be active contributors to the church community
• protect adults who may be vulnerable from actual or potential harm
• enable and encourage concerns to be raised and responded to openly and consistently

We recognise that:
• we commit ourselves to the safeguarding of people who may be vulnerable, ensuring their well-being in the life of this church
• everyone has different levels of vulnerability, and that each of us may be regarded as vulnerable at some time in our lives
• all adults who may be vulnerable (regardless of age, disability, gender, racial heritage, religious belief, sexual orientation or identity) have the right to equal protection from all types of harm or abuse
• abuse of adults who may be vulnerable can occur in all communities and is most likely to occur within families and by people known to them
• working in partnership with adults who may be vulnerable, their carers and other agencies is essential in promoting their welfare

St Michael and All Angels commits itself to promoting the inclusion and empowerment of people who may be vulnerable, including those who may have been abused:

Type of Abuse Description of Abuse
Physical abuse Including assault, hitting, slapping, pushing, misuse of medication, restraint or inappropriate physical sanctions
Domestic violence/abuse Including psychological, physical, sexual, financial, emotional abuse; so called ‘honour’ based violence
Sexual abuse Including rape, indecent exposure, sexual harassment, inappropriate looking or touching, sexual teasing or innuendo, sexual photography, subjection to pornography or witnessing sexual acts, indecent exposure and sexual assault or sexual acts to which the adult has not consented or was pressured into consenting
Psychological abuse Including emotional abuse, threats of harm or abandonment, radicalisation, deprivation of contact, humiliation, blaming, controlling, intimidation, coercion, harassment, verbal abuse, cyber bullying, isolation or unreasonable and unjustified withdrawal of services or supportive networks
Financial or material abuse Including theft, fraud, internet scamming, coercion in relation to an adult’s financial affairs or arrangements, including in connection with wills, property, inheritance or financial transactions, or the misuse or misappropriation of property, possessions or benefits
Modern slavery Encompasses slavery, human trafficking, forced labour and domestic servitude. Traffickers and slave masters use whatever means they have at their disposal to coerce, deceive and force individuals into a life of abuse, servitude and inhumane treatment
Discriminatory abuse Including forms of harassment, slurs or similar treatment; because of race, gender and gender identity, age, disability, sexual orientation or religion
Organisational abuse Including neglect and poor care practice within an institution or specific care setting such as a hospital or care home, for example, or in relation to care provided in one’s own home. This may range from one off incidents to on-going ill-treatment. It can be through neglect or poor professional practice as a result of the structure, policies, processes and practices within an organisation
Neglect and acts of omission Including ignoring medical, emotional or physical care needs, failure to provide access to appropriate health, care and support or educational services, the withholding of the necessities of life, such as medication, adequate nutrition and heating
Self-neglect This covers a wide range of behaviour; neglecting to care for one’s personal hygiene, health or surroundings and includes behaviour such as hoarding
(Taken from Hertfordshire: Safeguarding adults at risk January 2017)

In all our activities we –
• value, listen to and respect adults who may be vulnerable
• foster and encourage best practice by setting standards for working with adults who may be vulnerable, and boundaries for acceptable behaviour, in co-operation with statutory bodies, voluntary agencies and other faith communities

In our recruitment of paid staff and volunteers, following Diocesan procedures in –
undertaking to exercise proper care in the appointment and selection of those who will work with people who may be vulnerable. St Michael and All Angels is committed to supporting, resourcing, training and regularly reviewing those who undertake work amongst people who may be vulnerable.
• ensuring careful selection and recruitment of ordained and lay ministers as appropriate, voluntary workers, and paid workers with adults who may be vulnerable, in line with safer recruitment principles and checks
• each person who works with vulnerable people will agree to abide by these recommendation and the guidelines established by this church.
• providing supervision, support and training

In our publicity –
• sharing information about good safeguarding practice with adults who may be vulnerable, their carers, and all those working with them
• following the guidance and rules of GDPR.

When concerns are raised, following Diocesan procedures in –
• responding without delay to every concern raised that an adult who may be vulnerable may have been harmed, or be at risk from harm, through abuse, harassment or bullying; or about the behaviour of an adult or child
• working with the diocese and the appropriate statutory bodies during an investigation into abuse, including when allegations are made against a member of the church community
• challenging any abuse of power, especially by anyone in a position of trust

In our care –
It is the responsibility of each of us to prevent the physical, emotional, sexual, financial and spiritual abuse of vulnerable people and to report any such abuse that we discover or suspect.
• ensuring that informed and appropriate pastoral care is offered to any vulnerable adult who has suffered abuse, including support to make a complaint if so desired
• ensuring that appropriate pastoral care is offered to any member of our church community against whom an allegation is made

In our supervision, following Diocesan procedures in –
• ensuring, in partnership with the diocese and other agencies, that care and supervision is provided for any member of our church community known to have offended against a vulnerable adult, or to pose a risk to them.

We are committed to reviewing our policy and procedures annually.

Incumbent: Revd. Paul Seymour
Churchwarden: Mrs. Nikki Shilton
Churchwarden: Mr. Kim Banham
Date: 13th May 2019