Safeguarding
Policy.

Safeguarding is everyone's responsibility


Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children – and in particular protecting them from significant harm - depends upon effective joint working between agencies and professionals that have different roles and expertise. Children, especially some of the most vulnerable children and those at greatest risk of social exclusion, will need coordinated help from health, education, children’s social care, and quite possibly the voluntary sector and other agencies, including youth justice services.

 

For those children who are suffering, or at risk of suffering significant harm, joint working is essential, to safeguard and promote welfare of the child(ren) and – where necessary – to help bring to justice the perpetrators of crimes against children. All agencies and professionals should:

  • be alert to potential indicators of abuse or neglect;

  • be alert to the risks which individual abusers, or potential abusers, may pose to children;

  • share and help to analyse information so that an assessment can be made of the child’s needs and circumstances;

  • contribute to whatever actions are needed to safeguard and promote the child’s welfare;


Definitions of abuse and neglect
Abuse and neglect are forms of maltreatment of a child. Somebody may abuse or neglect a child by inflicting harm, or by failing to act to prevent harm. Children may be abused in a family or in an institutional or community setting; by those known to them or, more rarely, by a stranger. They may be abused by an adult or adults or another child or children.

  • Physical abuse - Physical abuse may involve hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning or scalding, drowning, suffocating, or otherwise causing physical harm to a child. Physical harm may also be caused when a parent or carer fabricates the symptoms of, or deliberately induces illness in a child.

  • Emotional Abuse - Emotional abuse is the persistent emotional maltreatment of a child such as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on the child’s emotional development. It may involve conveying to children that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate, or valued only insofar as they meet the needs of another person. It may feature age or developmentally inappropriate expectations being imposed on children. These may include interactions that are beyond the child’s developmental capability, as well as overprotection and limitation of exploration and learning, or preventing the child participating in normal social interaction. It may involve seeing or hearing the ill-treatment of another. It may involve bullying causing children frequently to feel frightened or in danger, or the exploitation or corruption of children. Some level of emotional abuse is involved in all types of maltreatment of a child, though it may occur alone.

  • Sexual Abuse - Sexual abuse involves forcing or enticing a child or young person to take part in sexual activities, including prostitution, whether or not the child is aware of what is happening. The activities may involve physical contact, including penetrative (eg: rape, buggery or oral sex) or non-penetrative acts. They may include non-contact activities, such as involving children in looking at, or in the production of, indecent material or watching sexual activities, or encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways.

  • Neglect - Neglect is the persistent failure to meet a child’s basic physical and/or psychological needs, likely to result in the serious impairment of the child’s health or development. Neglect may occur during pregnancy as a result of maternal substance abuse. Once a child is born, neglect may involve a parent or carer failing to provide adequate food and clothing, shelter including exclusion from home or abandonment, failing to protect a child from physical and emotional harm or danger, failure to ensure adequate supervision including the use of inadequate care-takers, or the failure to ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment. It may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to, a child’s basic emotional needs.

  • Domestic Abuse - A child living in a home where domestic abuse is occurring, should be considered a victim of the abuse. This abuse may not always be visible but can include controlling or coercive behavior. If a child describes worrying behaviour at home this should be treated as a disclosure, and the appropriate action taken.


Staff awareness
All staff will be made aware of this policy as part of their initial induction process and there will be regular briefings and updates for all staff. Appropriate training will be delivered to all CMPP staff every two years following induction or more frequently if required.

Reviewing the Policy and Procedure

Governance for this policy will be the responsibility of the Designated Safeguarding lead and trustees, and it will be reviewed every year on the anniversary of this document. Safeguarding will be a standing agenda item on the Trustees meetings, this does not preclude matters being raised outside of these times. The Trustees will ensure they have appropriate training and a nominated Trustee will be responsible for Safeguarding. The Trustees are there to ensure the Designated Safeguarding Lead is given necessary support in their role and de-briefing at quarterly intervals.

Designated Safeguarding Lead

There will be a member of staff or trustee responsible as the Safeguarding Lead. The roles and responsibilities of the named person are to:

  • ensure they have appropriate safeguarding training

  • ensure that all staff are aware of what they should do and who they should go to if they have concerns that a child or vulnerable adult may be experiencing or has experienced abuse or neglect.

  • ensure that concerns are clearly recorded, acted on and referred to the appropriate authority.

  • follow up any referrals and ensure the issues have been addressed.

Training

Staff and Governors of the CMPP will receive appropriate training for their role. This training will be scheduled at induction for new staff, and annually for existing staff.

Responsibility

CMPP ask that the beneficiaries we support are able to accept volunteers within their own

safeguarding policy, a declaration is acknowledged within each brokered agreement, that the volunteer business and the beneficiary organization of the voluntary work are responsible for ensuring necessary safeguarding arrangements are in place, and that where (if) regulated activity is to be conducted appropriate regulatory requirements are complied with.

Managing allegations

CMPP will ensure any allegations made against a member of staff or trustee will be dealt with swiftly.

Where a member of staff is thought to have committed a criminal offence the police will be

informed. If a crime has been witnessed the police should be contacted immediately.

The safety of the individual(s) concerned is paramount. A risk assessment must be undertaken immediately to assess the level of risk to all service users posed by the alleged perpetrator. This will include whether it is safe for them to continue in their role or any other role within the charity whilst the investigation is undertaken. This decision will be taken in consultation with statutory authorities.

 

The CMPP has a culture of whistle blowing and staff are aware of this culture. Staff will be supported if they raise matters that are of concern.

Managing a Disclosure of abuse

As a volunteer or a member of the CMPP team, it is unlikely you will receive a disclosure of abuse. However, if a child or vulnerable adult tells you something that concerns them, they have chosen you as they feel they can tell you. If this is not dealt with correctly then they may withdraw and not tell anyone else, potentially leaving themselves and others at further risk. This could be their one opportunity to be rescued from an abusive relationship, and it is important to get it right.

 

 

There are simple rules to follow:

 

Listen carefully to what they are saying

Be patient and focus on what you’re being told. Try not to express your own views and feelings. If you appear shocked or as if you don’t believe them it could make them stop talking and take back what they have said.

Give them the tools to talk

If the child is struggling to talk to you, show them Childline’s “letter builder tool”. It uses simple prompts to help them share what’s happening and how they are feeling.

Let them know they have done the right thing by telling you

Reassurance can make a big impact. If they’ve kept the abuse a secret it can have a big impact

knowing they’ve shared what’s happened.

Tell them it’s not their fault

Abuse is never the victim’s fault. It’s important they hear, and know this.

Say you take them seriously

They may have kept the abuse secret because they were scared they wouldn’t be believed. Make sure they know they can trust you and you’ll listen and support them.

Do not confront the alleged abuser

Confronting the alleged abuser could make the situation worse for the child.

Explain what you will do next

If you are dealing with a child, never promise not to tell anyone. These matters must be reported, and by breaking a promise you may damage the child’s trust in authority. Often “best interest” decisions need to be made for the child.

Report what the child has told you as soon as possible

Report as soon after you’ve been told about the abuse so the details are fresh in your mind and action can be taken quickly. It is best practice to make notes soon after you’ve spoken to the child or adult. Keep these notes, time and date them, and sign them. They may be important in the future. Make sure you offer the notes to any investigating authority.

Record, Retain and Report

If you believe any person is in risk of immediate harm call 999.

Your designated safeguarding lead is Paul Marcus on 07881 816096.