The CIO Polish Saturday School in Brighton & Hove Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy
Statement of Intent
The CIO Polish Saturday School in Brighton & Hove aims to promote an environment in which children and young people are safe and one in which any suspicion of abuse, in any form, is promptly and appropriately responded to. To this end we recognise that we have a duty to ensure that the Committee and all members and volunteers are fully aware of their responsibilities and roles in connection with Child Protection.
In promoting this policy The CIO Polish Saturday School in Brighton & Hove is keen to take reasonable steps to:
- Provide a welcoming, secure and comfortable environment for the children and young people;
- Keep them safe from harm while in the care of its staff or volunteers;
- Comply with relevant statutory requirements and relevant legislation, in particular The Children Act 1989 and The Protection of Children Act 1999, and also that they apply equally to all children and young people, irrespective of gender, ethnicity, disability, sexuality or religion.;
- Support and protect the interests of staff and volunteers who have contact with, or access to, children and young people.
- Designate child protection representative who will be responsible for ensuring that the policy and procedures are properly implemented and will be the first point of contact for anyone who has concerns.
- Ensuring that the children, young people and their parents/carers with whom we come into contact are aware of the Child Protection Policy and procedures, their rights, the name of the appointed child protection representative and what they should do if they have concerns.
- Ensuring that this information is provided in an appropriate form and will promote an environment in which children and young people are encouraged to raise any concerns.
- In the organisation of activities and events for children and young people ensuring that they are appropriate and well planned and that everyone involved in the group is aware of the code of behaviour.
Scope of the policy and those affected
This policy applies to all employees and volunteers (including Board members), and others representing Polish Saturday School in Brighton & Hove who have contact with children and young people.
In law a child is anyone under the age of 18, however older children, for example teenagers may prefer to be called young people.
ln welcoming and working with children and young people the Polish Saturday School in Brighton & Hove aims to:
- Provide a friendly welcome for them and promote their general welfare;
- Recognise their rights as individuals and treat them with dignity and respect;
- Consistently apply fair and objective methods of selecting staff, volunteers and contractors;
- Plan activities involving children and young people with care to minimise risks to their health and safety;
- Raise awareness of the dangers to which children and young people may be susceptible;
- Develop appropriate procedures for responding to accidents, incidents and alleged or suspected harm.
Implementation of the policy
- Distribution of copies.
Full copies of this policy will be distributed as a detailed reference guide to:
– Board/committee members
The representative, committee members, staff and volunteers will undergo DBS checks and training as appropriate to ensure that signs and symptoms of abuse are recognised and that the correct proœdures are followed.New Board members, staff and volunteers will receive training as part of their induction into Polish Saturday School in Brighton & Hove.
Other relevant Polish Saturday School in Brighton & Hove policies, instructions and guidance
This policy should be implemented in conjunction with other policies, instructions and guidance.
This policy was formally adopted by the Chair of The CIO Polish Saturday School in Brighton & Hove on 16 March 2018 and will be reviewed annually.
Child Protection Guidelines and Action Plan
The CIO Polish Saturday School in Brighton & Hove will ensure that everyone who is involved in the organisation, including children, is aware of the existence of the Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy and knows where to
find the name and contact details of the Child Protection Representative.
Recruitment of Staff and volunteers
All volunteers will be subject to a careful selection process which includes a DBS. They will be supported with appropriate training where necessary to ensure that they are able to recognise symptoms of abuse and will be given a copy of the Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy and made aware of the procedures to be followed where abuse is suspected or alleged.
Code of Behaviour
All parents, children and volunteers will be expected to behave in a safe and moral manner. In particular adults/volunteers will work in twos or groups and will not be left alone with individual children or small groups of children. They will be made aware that physical contact should never be initiated and physical expressions of emotion (eg hugging etc) and physical forms of play should be avoided and also that children should be discouraged from indulging in inappropriate physical contact and play.
Activities involving children will be carefully planned to ensure that they are safe and appropriate, with proper regard to health and safety guidelines.
- Types of harm:
- Physical – where children or young people receive physical hurt or injury;
- Neglect – where adults fail to care for children or young people and to protect them from danger, seriously impairing their health, well-being or development;
- Emotional- where children or young people are harmed by a constant lack of love and affection or intimidated by threats or taunts;
- Sexual – where vulnerable people are encouraged or forced to observe or participate in any form of sexual activity by adults or children. This also includes the use of sexualised language.
Common sense should be relied upon to recognise the warning signs. However, it is essential to rely on facts rather than opinions and not jump to conclusions.
- Who can harm.
An abuser is often known to the person being abused, whether a parent, sibling, other relative, family friend or neighbour.
Not only adults can harm. Children and young people can also suffer abuse from their peers. Sometimes the abuser may be an adult who
holds a position of authority over a young person. There is no certain way of identifying a would-be abuser, they can be people of any background and do not appear different from the rest of society.
Action Plan – Responding to accidents, incidents and harm
What to do if a person wants to talk about harm
If a child or young person (or their parent) wants to talk about harm, it is essential that the employee or volunteer:
- Listens carefully to what the person says, keeping calm and looking at them directly;
- Lets them know that to help them someone else must be told;
- Reassures them that they are not to blame;
- Is aware that they may have been threatened;
- Does not push them for information;
- Reassures them that they are right to talk about it and what they say is accepted;
- Lets them know what will happen next and undertakes to let them know the outcome.
What to do if abuse is suspected
If abuse is suspected, the nominated Child Protection Representative (Ania Niedermaier – Reed, Kinga Hofman or in absence – anyone from Board of Trustees) should be told immediately. Suspicions will be referred to the Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH)
Any allegations should be treated extremely seriously and when dealing with a child, he/she should not be interrogated but it is important to
- show that he/she is believed
- reassure him/her that they have done the right thing in reporting the alleged abuse that he/she is not to blame
Notes should be kept of any conversation with a child where abuse is suspected and the nominated person should be informed immediately so that appropriate action can be taken without delay.
Medical attention should be sought if necessary and parents or carers should be informed unless there is a suspicion of their involvement in the alleged abuse.
Whilst the care and safety of the child is the priority, members will work with, and support the child’s family, while any investigations proceed.
Name and contact details of:
- Child Protection Representative
- Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) on 01273 290400 or MASH@brighton-hove.gcsx.gov.uk.Other ways to get in touch:
C/O Whitehawk Community Hub
179A Whitehawk Road
Brighton BN2 5FL
Outside of normal ofñœ hours call the number above to receive a message giving emergency contact details.
- The Police (if a child is at immediate risk)- tel. 999
What happens when you call MASH
You will speak to a qualified social worker. They will take full details of the child and your concerns and will either:
- provide advice and information
- direct you to an appropriate team or organisation
- make a formal referral to the social care team.
When a child protection concern arises, either through observation or report, it is essential that records are kept of what is said and seen and what action is taken. These records must be regarded as confidential and be kept in a locked place with access restricted to the child protection representative or other nominated person. As far as possible, and appropriate, the following information should be kept:
- Child’s name and address and telephone number;
- Name of parent(s) or carer(s) and telephone number;
- A record of what is said to have happened, including when and where it took place;
- Details of others involved and what was said by them;
- Details of any obvious signs of abuse eg bruising, bleeding, change in behaviour;
- What the child has said about what happened;
- Who has been informed and when, including whether parents have been informed;
- Signature of person recording the information with the date of the record.
Confidentiality and sensitivity
When dealing with personal and emotive details of this nature, Confidentiality must be maintained at all times since the allegations or suspicions may prove to be unfounded. Notes and records should be kept in a secure place and shared only with those who need to know about the incident or allegation.
A sensitive approach should be taken with the accused to explain why an investigation has to take place and to reassure them that the matter will be handled discreetly.
No assumptions of guilt should be made unless and until an actual conviction has been obtained in the proceedings. Impartial contact will be maintained by a nominated Polish Saturday School in Brighton & Hove staff member during this process.
Appendix 1: Pro forma for recording disclosures or signs of abuse witnessed
Appendix 2: Flow chart for dealing with disclosures or signs of abuse witnessed