Parish Policies

This page contains information on policies regarding

1. Children's Liturgy safety procedures.

2. Parish Safeguarding guidelines.      

Children's Liturgy Policy

Procedures to be followed at the Sunday Morning Liturgy

and

Our procedures to deal with an emergency situation.

 

Leadership responsibilities

 

v  Ensure each child had been registered on the attendance roll for that Sunday.

v  Ensure each adult helpers has also registered for that Sunday.

v  Maintain an incident book to record any accidents or disturbances on that morning.

v  Implement procedures to update our risk assessment in the event of an incident. This will involve informing the parish priest and the Safeguarding Committee.

v  Ensure the doors are locked by 11.05am to decline admission to latecomers.

v  Refuse admission to unaccompanied children who will not accept direction.

v  Ensure the parent/carer of such a child is informed in a gentle manner.

v  Encourage the parent to remain with the child until the child is accepting of adult supervision.

v  A disruptive child, even when accompanied by a parent/carer, may need to be referred to the parish priest.

v  A fire drill will take place once a year to ensure the adult helpers are aware of the procedures.

v  In the event of a fire or major incident the responsible person for the Sunday Liturgy will report to the parish priest at the muster point that the exited building is now clear of all personnel.

 

Advice for Parents/carers In case of an Emergency

 

v  In the event of a fire or a major incident in either the church or the Halls, all parents/carers are requested to assemble at the muster point in the car park.

v  You will find the muster point at the screen-wall that abuts the garages.

v  The children attending the Sunday Morning Liturgy will be taken to this muster point by the adult helpers.

v  No parent should try and collect their child from the Hall as you will block the exit for the whole group.

v  If the muster point is unsafe then the alternative will be to lead the children around the back of the church to assemble at the front of the church, in the enclosed corner between road and school.


 

    Parish Guidelines on Safeguarding.

 A brochure is available from the back of the church

Parish Statement.

The safeguarding of the lives of children,  young people and vulnerable adults lies at the heart of the mission of the Catholic Church. In this parish we adhere to the policies of the Church as laid down by the Catholic Advisory Safeguarding Service. The full policy may be viewed at www.csas.uk.net

 

Church Mission Statement

As part of its mission the Catholic Church is committed to

  • Listening to, relating effectively and valuing children, young people and vulnerable adults, while ensuring their protection within Church activities.
  • Supporting parents and carers
  • Providing volunteers with support and training
  • Following established guidelines  when dealing with concerns.
  • Maintaining good links with Statutory Services.

Area of Policy.

We recognize that within our society a number of children, young people and vulnerable adults become victims of physical, sexual, emotional abuse and neglect. Accordingly, at Good Shepherd Church we undertake to act responsibly and within approved guidelines in the manner in which we -

  • Respond to allegations of abuse, including those made against church leaders or members.
  • Appoint and train volunteers Oversee the supervision of activities and good practice.
  • Support victims of abuse.
  • Work with offenders returning or joining our community.

 

Appointment of Workers.

All workers, both volunteer and paid, will be required to complete an application form and provide references that will be taken up, prior to interview. They will also have to agree to provide a DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) check before any appointment is made. A detailed knowledge of the parish child safeguarding procedures will be necessary and a time of probation served, before any appointment can be confirmed.

Group Activities.

Each activity will require parent/guardian to complete a registration form.

A roll must be kept for each activity.

Current risk assessment of all activities.

Ratios of male/female must be appropriate.

No volunteer to work alone with a child.

Only over 18’s can supervise activities.

Accident and incident Log Book.

Abuse and Neglect.

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

Categories of abuse and neglect.

Physical abuse; emotional abuse; sexual abuse; neglect; organised or multiple abuse; abuse of trust.

Indicators that might signify physical signs of abuse.

Any injuries not consistent with their explanation; parts of the body not normally injured by falls etc; non-treated injuries; signs of neglect (eg inadequate care; under nourishment; constant hunger; stealing food; failure to grow); reluctance to change for sporting activities; repeat urinary infections or tummy pains; cuts, scratches, burns, substance abuse.

Indicators of possible sexual abuse.

Any allegations by a child concerning sexual abuse; child with excessive preoccupation with sexual matters and detailed knowledge of adult sexual behavior, or who engage in age-inappropriate sexual play; sexual activity through words, play or drawing; child who is sexually provocative or seductive with adults; inappropriate bed-sharing at home; severe sleeping disturbance; anorexia, bulimia

 

Indicators that might signify emotional signs of abuse.

 

Changes or regression in mood or behaviour, particularly where child withdraws or becomes clinging; also depression/aggression, extreme anxiety; nervousness, frozen watchfulness; obsessions or phobias; sudden under achievement or lack of concentration; inappropriate relationships with peers or adults; attention seeking behaviour; running away / stealing / lying.

When a child tells you about abuse.

Listen reassuringly and carefully to what the child wants to share. Do not ask probing questions and accept what is said to you. Make it clear that you cannot keep the conversation a secret. Record the child’s exact words as quickly as possible following your chat. Inform the appropriate authorities immediately. ( See above). 

When an adult expresses concern.

Listen carefully and patiently without judging or questioning. Put them in touch with the appropriate authorities. Offer to accompany them. Inform them that you are duty-bound to pass on the information if they are unwilling to proceed.

 

If an adult confides in you that they were abused as a child.

The same advice as above. Remember the abuser may still be in a position to abuse.

Working with offenders.

When someone attending the church is known to have abused children they will be made welcome in Christian fellowship but will be required to accept reasonable boundaries to safeguard children.

Helping victims of abuse.

As a church we are committed to supporting victims of abuse and encouraging them in their faith.

If you suspect a case of abuse

  • As a general rule – always contact those in authority.
  • Do not investigate.
  • Do not inform, question or confront the alleged abuser.
  • If you think a child is in immediate danger or the matter is urgent you should report your suspicion, without delay, to Social Services or the Police. Our local Social Service Safeguarding Teams can be contacted from the details given below. If the disclosure carries no immediate danger then please contact our Parish Safeguarding Representative.

 

Contact details

Lewisham Social Services                

02083146000

 

Bromley Social Services                

02084617089 (office hours)                                                

02084644848 (out of hours)

 

Police                                          

03001231212

 

Parish Safeguarding Representative.

Angela Catlin                                    

Parish Office: 02086981449

 

Deputy Safeguarding Representative

Sr Collette Bamber                              

Parish Office: 02086981449