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Extracts from Working Together to Safeguard Children 2015

Working Together Quotes Relevant to the Church of England:

Section 11 of the Children Act 2004 featured in Working Together 2015

WARNING – Working Together to Safeguard Children is only ‘guidance.’  There is no law requiring known or suspected abuse to be reported by anyone working in a Regulated Activity to the statutory agencies. Over many years the Church of England has failed to report known and suspected abuse to the statutory agencies. No law was broken for this failure, no one can be held to account through the Criminal Court for failing to report because reporting child sexual abuse is entirely discretionary.

From Working Together :

4. These organisations should have in place arrangements that reflect the importance of safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, including:

  • a clear line of accountability for the commissioning and/or provision of services designed to safeguard and promote the welfare of children;
  • a senior board level lead to take leadership responsibility for the organisation’s safeguarding arrangements;
  • a culture of listening to children and taking account of their wishes and feelings, both in individual decisions and the development of services;
  • clear whistleblowing procedures, which reflect the principles in Sir Robert Francis’s Freedom to Speak Up review and are suitably referenced in staff training and codes of conduct, and a culture that enables issues about safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children to be addressed;
  • arrangements which set out clearly the processes for sharing information, with other professionals and with the Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB);
  • a designated professional lead (or, for health provider organisations, named professionals) for safeguarding. Their role is to support other professionals in their agencies to recognise the needs of children, including rescue from possible abuse or neglect. Designated professional roles should always be explicitly defined in job descriptions. Professionals should be given sufficient time, funding, supervision and support to fulfil their child welfare and safeguarding responsibilities effectively;
  • safe recruitment practices for individuals whom the organisation will permit to work regularly with children, including policies on when to obtain a criminal record check;
  • appropriate supervision and support for staff, including undertaking safeguarding training:
  • employers are responsible for ensuring that their staff are competent to carry out their responsibilities for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and creating an environment where staff feel able to raise concerns and feel supported in their safeguarding role;
    See Sir Robert Francis’s Freedom to Speak Up review report.
  • staff should be given a mandatory induction, which includes familiarisation with child protection responsibilities and procedures to be followed if anyone has any concerns about a child’s safety or welfare; and
  • all professionals should have regular reviews of their own practice to ensure they improve over time.
  • clear policies in line with those from the LSCB for dealing with allegations against people who work with children. Such policies should make a clear distinction between an allegation, a concern about the quality of care or practice or a complaint. An allegation may relate to a person who works with children who has:
  • behaved in a way that has harmed a child, or may have harmed a child;
  • possibly committed a criminal offence against or related to a child; or
  • behaved towards a child or children in a way that indicates they may pose a risk of harm to children.

5. County level and unitary local authorities should ensure that allegations against people who work with children are not dealt with in isolation. Any action necessary to address corresponding welfare concerns in relation to the child or children involved should be taken without delay and in a coordinated manner. Local authorities should, in addition, have designated a particular officer, or team of officers (either as part of multi-agency arrangements or otherwise), to be involved in the management and oversight of allegations against people that work with children. Any such officer, or team of officers, should be sufficiently qualified and experienced to be able to fulfil this role effectively, for example qualified social workers. Any new appointments to such a role, other than current or former designated officers moving between local authorities, should be qualified social workers. Arrangements should be put in place to ensure that any allegations about those who work with children are passed to the designated officer, or team of officers, without delay.

‘Working Together’ says of Faith Organisations:

44. Churches, other places of worship and faith-based organisations provide a wide range of activities for children and have an important role in safeguarding children and supporting families. Like other organisations who work with children they need to have appropriate arrangements in place to safeguard and promote the welfare of children, as described in paragraph 4 of this chapter. (See first paragraph above)

January 5th, 2018|

Australian Royal Commission data comparison with Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse

Data is critically important for assessing a project’s direction of travel, effectiveness, achievements, scope for improvement and much else besides.

Mandate Now decided to look at the work of the The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse in Australia and compare data from it to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse in England and Wales.

Mandate Now provides no commentary to accompany the data.

The .pdf can be downloaded here

We hope you find this useful.

November 3rd, 2017|

Times Letter published today from Professor Jay Chair of IICSA

In her letter to the Times published today, complaining about an article by Sean O’Neill published on 1/11/17 titled ‘Child Sex Abuse Inquiry in £1m advertising campaign,’ Professor Alexis Jay, Chair of the IICSA inquiry, resorts to a flurry of statistics that mean little to anyone – until now.

Press Release

Professor Jay feels the need to defend the reputation of IICSA following Sean O’Neill’s article on 1/11/17.

Her letter is mostly statistical which will mean little to most readers because no one until now has had a datum from which any understanding, indicators or conclusions can be drawn.

For some time Mandate Now has been working to correct the vacuum. Coinciding with Professor Jay’s letter we can today provide data from Australia’s Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, which is due to report in December 2017. Set up in 2013, one year before its English equivalent, the data comparisons between the two inquiries, which is available here, will enable you to ask cogent questions of IICSA. There is no accompanying commentary from us and no attempt to influence.

Tom Perry who is quoted in the Times article of 1/11/17, assembled the data and is available for interview.

IICSA attempted to have a letter published on 2/11/17, but broke exclusivity rules by first publishing it on its website. It was quickly removed. Curiously, a statistical anomaly has appeared between the withdrawn version and today’s. The original letter claims that 515 people have attended the Truth Project. However, today’s letter using different language says: ‘700 people have been through the Truth Project’ – that’s an increase of 36% in 24 hours. The key word is ‘attended’ i.e. in person. The lack of clarity is noteworthy.

MandateNow

E: office@mandatenow.org.uk

 

November 3rd, 2017|

Where is the outcome of the Consultation – Reporting and Acting on Child Abuse and Neglect

The Government acceded to a public consultation on Mandatory Reporting on 28.10.14. 

There is no need to have taken this long over this consultation, but there must be a reason.

Children are being avoidably left in abusive settings as empirical research clearly reveals, because Government is out of step with the majority of countries on all four continents.

 

 

September 15th, 2017|

Mothers of Prevention | Organised Child Sexual Exploitation – Sunday Times Magazine 30/9/07 by Julie Bindel

The article below by Julie Bindel preceded Andrew Norfolk’s reporting on organised child sexual exploitation of girls by men of Pakistani muslim origin in northern cities, by sometime (MN understand’s Andrew Norfolk’s first article was in 2012). Coinciding with the broadcast of  the three part drama Three Girls Ms Bindel explained some of the immense challenges she faced trying to place her article.  The same fate could have befallen Andrew Norfolk but for the sustained editorial support for Norfolk’s investigative reporting which had such a profound impact. By default, people find more reasons to walk away from child sexual abuse than stay. An abusee, well acquainted with the hopelessly inadequate statutory framework and the dynamics of abuse, can clear a roomful of politicians in SW1 faster than a Chubb fire alarm. The subject is considered a political swamp.

Note – clicking on any of the images below takes to you full article in an album on Google Photos which makes it far easier to read. 

 

August 21st, 2017|

IICSA Seminar 12.04.17 was Misinformed About Mandatory Reporting by UCLAN Assessment

Preventing and responding to Child Sexual Abuse: Learning about best practice from overseas (Lorraine Radford et al., 2017)

At the outset it is worth reminding ourselves of the reason the Independent Inquiry Into Child Sexual Abuse was established.

  • To consider the extent to which State and non-State institutions have failed in their duty of care to protect children from sexual abuse and exploitation;
  • To consider the extent to which those failings have since been addressed;
  • To identify further action needed to address any failings identified;
  • To consider the steps which it is necessary for State and non-State institutions to take in order to protect children from such abuse in future; and
  • To publish a report with recommendations.

(more…)

May 15th, 2017|

Bishop of Bath + Wells Faces a Morton’s Fork over MR. CofE Imagineers Attempt to Conceal ‘U’ Turn

The Home Office consultation titled ‘Reporting and Acting on Child Abuse’ was secured on 28th October 2014 as a result of Amendment 43 tabled by Baroness Walmsley (LibDem) during the passage of the Serious Crimes Bill.

Sometime before the Bill arrived in the Lords, Mandate Now had been advised by an individual close to our pressure group that the Church of England was fully subscribed to mandatory reporting in Regulated Activities. News reached us that the Lord Bishop of Durham Paul Butler, who at the time was Chair of the Churches National Safeguarding Panel and Lead Bishop for Safeguarding in the Church of England, intended supporting Baroness Walmsley’s amendment not least because Justin Welby was in agreement. Here was a ‘Regulated Activity’ acknowledging that without law, no one can place reliance on child protection in any Regulated Activity because  policies are grounded on nothing more than a hope that someone will have the courage to do the ‘right thing.’ It’s an arrangement designed to fail. We said so in the statement that opened our submission to the Consultation dated 6/10/16 : (more…)

May 2nd, 2017|

#MR Bill Underway for USA Athletes following Senate Hearing and Grey-Thompson Now Wants It

Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson’s – ‘Duty of Care in Sport’ report is published today.

A key paragraph is on p.20 under  in ‘Theme 5’- safeguarding.

Mandatory reporting

It should be recognised that organisations that work with children and vulnerable adults can attract individuals who will seek to exploit and abuse them – there is a need for continual vigilance. The government should therefore consider extending a Duty to Report to all sports organisations. This would mean that if a person knows, or has suspicion of, any abuse taking place, they must report it to the relevant body for action to be taken.

You can download it here.

(more…)

April 21st, 2017|

Mandatory reporting laws for child sexual abuse are essential for kids and society: Professor Ben Mathews

Professor Ben Mathews is a researcher in the Australian Centre for Health Law Research at Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia. He has led some of the largest studies ever undertaken into mandatory reporting laws for child sexual abuse.

In the UK, 18% of girls and 5% of boys experience contact sexual abuse (one in eight children), and the figures are even higher for all kinds of sexual abuse. The mean age of onset is 9-10. Most children unlucky enough to suffer sexual abuse are unable to tell anyone, because they are terrified of the abuser’s power, have been threatened, feel ashamed, depend on the abuser, or are too young to understand it. (more…)

March 24th, 2017|

Child Protection in Football – An Article in The Independent Reliant on Hearsay and Hope

On Wednesday 1st March Ian Herbert, Chief Sports Writer for the Independent, under the banner Football is not rife with child abusers, so it is time for the Offside Trust to explain what they are for,’  writes a eulogy to the FA’s current child protection framework. Is it right to do so? We examine his claims and the foundations on which they are grounded.

The piece informs us: (more…)

March 6th, 2017|