Safeguarding Policy and Procedure
CONGREGATION OF JESUS CHARITABLE TRUST
We believe that everyone should be valued, supported and protected from harm and we recognise a special responsibility to protect the personal dignity and rights of children and adults at risk.
The purpose of this policy statement is to ensure that the Congregation of Jesus and its charitable trust (referred to collectively in this policy as the CJ) will:
- protect all children, young people and adults who have involvement with the CJ from harm, and promote their well-being at all times.
- provide staff, volunteers and CJ members, and persons at risk and their families with the overarching principles that guide our approach to safeguarding.
This policy applies to all workers within the Congregation of Jesus and its charitable trust; religious, lay, voluntary or employee, regardless of their role or the activities they undertake. Collectively referred to here as CJ members, employees and volunteers.
This policy fits within the framework of good safeguarding by conforming to the legislative guidance and policy of the Charity Commission; the Catholic Safeguarding Standards Agency (CSSA) as the regulatory body for safeguarding within the Catholic Church in England and Wales; and the Religious Life Safeguarding Service (RLSS), the service provider for Religious Congregations.
It is a requirement of all CJ members, employees, and volunteers that they respond to allegations or concerns of abuse, however small by reporting them to the Safeguarding Lead (SGL). Abuse in this policy refers to: physical; sexual; emotional; spiritual; neglect; self-neglect; organisational; material; psychological; financial; domestic or verbal. Additionally, behaviour which effectively results in modern day slavery or where there is evidence of discrimination or radicalisation, needs to be recognised and addressed as a safeguarding issue.
IMPLEMENTATION AND PROCEDURES
Practice guidance for CJ members, employees and volunteers
When must I act?
Action must be taken if a concern is raised that a child or adult may be experiencing significant harm. This includes, but is not limited to:
- A person who is at serious risk of harm from self or others
- A person who poses a serious risk of harm to someone else
- A concern about a child or adult at risk of harm from a person outside the CJ context
- Concerns over someone’s mental capacity
What must I do?
If a member, employee or volunteer in the CJ becomes aware of a safeguarding issue, they should contact the Safeguarding Lead (SGL). The SGL will then contact the RLSS Safeguarding Team. If the situation is not clear, the SGL can seek advice from the CEO or Provincial. All further action will be taken by the SGL lead in consultation with the RLSS. The person who becomes aware of a safeguarding issue should:
- Ensure those concerned are safe
- Listen to those concerned with empathy
- Make brief notes of what has been communicated
The CJ safeguarding lead is Mrs Philippa Smith.
She can be contacted on 01904 643238.
(Philippa works part-time but this number is answered 24/7 and if Philippa is not working at the time, a message will be taken and passed to her which she will respond to it when she is working next).
Alternatively email CJTsafeguarding@barconvent.co.uk
If Philippa is not working at the time and the matter is urgent because someone is in immediate risk of harm you should contact the police using 999.
If you do not want to contact the CJ Safeguarding Lead directly or do not feel that your concern has been handled properly you can contact the Religious Life Safeguarding Service directly on 0151 5562311 or via email email@example.com
What happens next?
The SGL for the CJ, working with the RLSS, should:
- Ensure the individual/s has been informed of the next steps and possible timescale
- Contact any relevant bodies
- Complete the safeguarding paperwork and ensure there is an appropriate record of all communications including phone calls, meetings and discussions in relation to the case
- Inform the provincial and trust CEO of the new safeguarding referral unless the concern relates to either of these people.
The individual who raised the initial concern must be made aware that all information about safeguarding might have to be shared with a statutory body, but they have a right at the initial disclosure stage to remain anonymous. Details may need to be passed on to the police and any other appropriate body. The CJ member, employee or volunteer should be supportive of the individual making the disclosure but should not seek more details than necessary for an initial referral.
The RLSS will make recommendation about when to report to safeguarding bodies or external agencies based on risk, need, and the national policy guidance supplied by the CSSA.
All action must also be taken in line with the Church’s mandatory reporting policy. This means that action must be taken if there are reasonable grounds to suspect or believe that someone who holds any type of role within the Church is going to or has committed a crime, is going to or has caused harm, poses a risk or is otherwise unsuitable to work in a public facing role.
Who else may need to be involved?
- RLSS Out of Hours Team
- Local authority Safeguarding team – for adults and/or children
- Police 999
- Police 101
- NHS Crisis Team
- Community Psychiatric Nurse
- Charity Commission
- Safe Spaces
- Local Safeguarding Commission
- Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO)
Roles and responsibilities
The CJ Board
The trustee board has a duty to maintain appropriate governance and oversight of safeguarding in line with this policy and national guidelines. The board has a member with specific responsibility for safeguarding, Mrs Gill Chapman. The board has a safeguarding sub-committee which supports the lead trustee as and when required. This sub-committee consists of the provincial superior and at least one other board member. Certain functions of the board will be delegated to Congregation and staff members, as indicated below.
The Provincial Superior
The provincial superior is responsible for ensuring appropriate policy, procedures and best practice are in place for the effective delivery of safeguarding, including any related due diligence checks.
The Trust CEO
The Trust CEO has direct oversight of CJ safeguarding policy and guidance, including management and oversight of documentation. These are updated in collaboration with the provincial superior and the safeguarding lead. The CEO also coordinates records of SG training undertaken.
The Safeguarding Lead
The safeguarding lead has direct oversight of CJ case management and of the secure, legally compliant storage of safeguarding reports and related material. The SGL is expected to work in close partnership with the Religious Life Safeguarding Service (RLSS). The safeguarding lead may delegate some of this responsibility to the RLSS by passing the case to them but will remain as key contact for the case duration unless another individual is identified to assume case responsibility.
All other roles
All CJ members, employees, and volunteers have an obligation to ensure that they respond to safeguarding concerns by reporting the concern as soon as possible to the safeguarding lead or anyone acting in her/his absence.
Everyone involved in the work of the CJ has a duty to disclose to the safeguarding lead any safeguarding concerns that have been raised about themselves.
All CJ members, employees, and volunteers will undergo safeguarding training in relation to children and adults at risk as well as any other training relevant to their role.
This policy is approved by the CJ Board and will be subject to review in February 2025 and then biennially or sooner where there is a significant change or need.
Policy last updated: February 2024
Policy next review: February 2025