Section 2 - What can a chaplaincy expect from the diocese?
Safeguarding policy and practice guidance
The Diocesan Safeguarding Team is responsible for supporting chaplaincies in implementing the Diocesan Safeguarding Policy, based on the House of Bishops’ Safeguarding Policy and Practice Guidance. This includes arrangements to monitor the quality of safeguarding arrangements in chaplaincies.
Safeguarding advice and support
The Diocesan Safeguarding Team are experienced safeguarding professionals who offer safeguarding advice and support to chaplaincies. The chaplaincy must report any safeguarding concerns or allegations to the Diocesan Safeguarding Team within 24 hours of a concern arising. The Diocesan Safeguarding Team will advise on how to respond well. They will manage all concerns or allegations against church officers. The Diocese offers an out-of-hours service for any safeguarding concerns or allegations that arise outside normal office hours.
The Diocesan Safeguarding Team and the Archdeacons are responsible for the provision of safeguarding training (see Section 6).
Safer recruitment support
The Diocesan Safeguarding Team is available for advice on all aspects of safer recruitment, including applications for a vetting check. The Diocesan Safeguarding Team risk assesses all blemished vetting checks (see Section 5).
External scrutiny of safeguarding
The diocese has a group of senior clergy, church officers and external safeguarding professionals, independently chaired by an external safeguarding expert. Named the Diocesan Safeguarding Advisory Committee (DSAC), the group is responsible for overseeing the implementation of policy, training and the effectiveness and quality of safeguarding arrangements.
Whistleblowing and complaints
Whistleblowing (in terms of this Safeguarding Policy) is when an individual raises legitimate concerns regarding specific matters, which are protected under the law ("qualifying disclosures"). A qualifying disclosure is one made in the public interest by a worker who has a reasonable belief that:
- a criminal offence;
- a miscarriage of justice;
- an act creating risk to health and safety;
- an act causing damage to the environment;
- a breach of any other legal obligation; or
- concealment of any of the above;
is being, has been, or is likely to be, committed.
It is not necessary for an individual to have proof that such an act is being, has been, or is likely to be, committed - a reasonable belief is sufficient. The worker has no responsibility for investigating the matter - it is the organisation's responsibility to ensure that an investigation takes place.
An individual who makes such a protected disclosure has the right not to be dismissed, subjected to any other detriment, or victimised because he/she has made a disclosure.
Whistleblowing does not cover personal grievances or complaints.
Complaints and criticisms in connection with safeguarding may be made:
- regarding Diocesan policies and procedures
- against the Diocesan Safeguarding Advisor (DSA) and/or the Assistant Diocesan Safeguarding Advisor (ADSA)
For further information, including how to raise a whistleblowing concern or a complaint regarding safeguarding, please see the Diocese in Europe's safeguarding complaints policy and procedure and whistleblowing policy