The Role of a Church Safeguarding Coordinator
We believe that children and adults at risk deserve the best possible care that the church can provide and that the church should be a safe place for everyone involved. We recognise and give thanks for the time and devotion given by anyone carrying out this role.
Purpose of the role:
● To advise the elders on safeguarding policy and procedure in the church.
● To be the named point of contact for safeguarding issues.
● To be an advocate for good safeguarding practice in the church.
● To advise the elders on how to coordinate safeguarding policy and procedure in the church
● To familiarise themselves with church policies and procedures and URC good practice guidelines in safeguarding and to keep abreast of any changes and developments.
● To audit church policies and procedures annually, and report to the elders the degree to which they are up to date, and fit for purpose.
● To make others in the church aware of the church safeguarding policies and procedures, as well as URC guidelines.
● To advise the elders on how safer recruitment practices can be operated in the recruitment of all workers (both volunteers and paid) including, but not exclusively, ensuring that the relevant workers have up to date Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks.
● To be the named point of contact for safeguarding issues
● To be a named person that children / adults at risk, church members and outside agencies can talk to regarding any issue to do with safeguarding.
● To be aware of the names and telephone numbers of appropriate contacts within Social Care and the Police in the event of a referral needing to be made.
● To be aware of when to seek advice, and when it is necessary to inform Social Care, the Police or the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) of a concern or incident.
● To take appropriate action in relation to any safeguarding concerns which arise within the church.
● To cooperate with Social Care or the Police in safeguarding investigations relating to people within the church.
● To advise the elders on how appropriate records should be kept by the church, and that information in relation to safeguarding issues is handled confidentially and stored securely.
● To inform the Synod Safeguarding Officer at the time of any referrals made to the statutory authorities, or of any information received from the statutory authorities.
● To report summary safeguarding information annually to the Synod Safeguarding Officer to enable them to monitor safeguarding in the Synod.
● To be an advocate for good safeguarding practice in the church
● To promote sensitivity within the church towards all those affected by the impact of abuse.
● To promote positive safeguarding procedures and practice and advise the elders if it appears procedures are not being adhered to.
● To arrange and/or promote opportunities for training in safeguarding to any relevant members of the leadership team and congregation, including both paid staff and volunteers.
● To update their own safeguarding training every three years.
● To seek appropriate support and advice in carrying out this role.
To make arrangements for a suitable person to carry out this role when they are on leave, and to publicise who this is and the dates of the alternative arrangements.