Safeguarding our young people and vulnerable adults

This is broken down into the following areas:

Safeguarding policy

What does our policy say?

As Christians we are called to love and care for each other. This is particularly true where the most vulnerable members of our community are concerned.

Children, young people and vulnerable adults have particular needs which can only be met by our Church if we respond to the call of Christ’s people, living in his image.

This means living in today’s changing world with all of its problems and challenges, and recognising that some of those problems and challenges will be for the Church itself.

We, as the respective Church Council and family of Huntingdon Methodist Church are committed to preventing all abuse of children young people and vulnerable adults  who enter our premises. In particular, our concern is in four key areas of abuse.

  • PHYSICAL - Where there is abuse or injury
  • EMOTIONAL - Where this is a constant lack of love and affection, or the prescene of threats, taunts and bullying
  • SEXUAL - Where children, young people or vulnerable adults are used for sexual gratification
  • NEGLECT - Where there is deprivation of any of the things where are essential well-being or development

Our Church is equally committed to offering pastoral support to any member of our Church family who is accused, rightly or wrongly, of any act of abuse, whilst not compromising the judicial process.

How our safeguarding policy works

As part of The Methodist Church, the Huntingdon Methodist Church Council has the following requirements in relation to the implementation of its Safeguarding Policy.

  1. No one who has been convicted, or who has received a formal police caution, in respect of any offence against young people aged under 18, or vulnerable adults, shall work with  young people or vulnerable adults either in the life of the Church, or within a group which meets on our church premises under licence from the Church Council.
  2. No one who has been convicted, or who has received a formal police caution, in respect of any offence against young people aged under 18, or vulnerable adults, shall be appointed to specific offices or jobs  listed at item 4 (below),within the life of the Church
  3. All of the following people must be checked by The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) and also sign the declaration required by The Methodist Church. This requires notification of any criminal convictions or formal police cautions before either their appointment, or their groups use of the premises under licence, is considered by the Church Council.
    1. All employees and  all voluntary young people’s and vulnerable adults' workers and helpers appointed by Church Council.
    2. Any other  office and job holders appointed by Church Council who may come  into contact with young people or vulnerable adults on an occasional basis.
    3. All employees, voluntary leaders and helpers of groups meeting under licence
    4. All organisers and helpers of special events, using the premises under licence, where young people or vulnerable adults are likely to be present.
  4. All reasonable care must be taken to ensure that anyone who has either a criminal conviction or a police caution is not appointed to either
    1. any of the following offices or jobs:
      1. Any work with young people aged under 18 or vulnerable adults.
      2. Pastoral Visitor
      3. Local Preacher, worship leader, musician or choir leader.
      4. Church steward, property steward, communion steward.
      5. Church Council or Circuit Meeting member
    2. or any office or job which may involve
      1. Lone access to church premises or direct contact with young people or vulnerable adults when no other adult is present.
      2. Carrying out duties away from the church premises which may be seen as  representing Huntingdon Methodist Church.
      3. Holding a key to Huntingdon Methodist Church premises.

Safeguarding group

To ensure that our Safeguarding Policy is always implemented in a fair, reasonable and correct manner, the Church Council has appointed a Safeguarding Group to act on a day to day basis.

The Safeguarding Group is responsible for:

  • acting on any complaints or issues made by young people and vulnerable adults or their respective parents /guardians or carers, or by any other individuals;
  • advising Church Council at the earliest time of any issues which require a decision to be made by the Council;
  • making an annual report which includes details of any changes to be made to the Church Safeguarding Policy;
  • ensuring that the list of people requiring up to date CRB and Methodist Safeguarding forms is reviewed on a regular basis;
  • providing advice and assistance in the completion of CRB and Methodist Safeguarding Forms to new leaders, office and job holders;
  • ensuring that the necessary training and supporting information is made available;
  • ensuring that the Safeguarding information is regularly communicated to all of the Church family through weekly Notices, In Touch Magazine, and HMC Internet website.

The Safeguarding Group will comprise of:

  • The Minister of Huntingdon Methodist Church;
  • The Safeguarding Co-ordinator appointed by Church Council;
  • A representative of the elected Church Stewards;
  • A representative of the HMC Young Peoples` Leadership Forum.

Both male and female genders should be represented on the Safeguarding Group.

If you are a young person and you need to talk to someone please contact any member of our Safeguarding Group at any time.

The current members of our Safeguarding Group are:

  • Rev. David King 01480 453857
  • Lynne Milton 01480 450405 
  • Paul Tindall 01480 399838
  • Robin Ward 07775 863314 

How we use photographs and moving images

At Huntingdon Methodist Church we take the issue of personal safety very seriously, and this includes the use of still and moving images of every adult, child and young person children in our Church family.  We occasionally include still images in publications such as our weekly notices, our monthly In-Touch magazine, posters and displays, and on our website, and we use moving images during our worship.

We have a duty of care which means that children (aged under 18) must always remain unidentified by name when we use their image in any format or situation, thus reducing the risk of inappropriate contact.  This is underpinned by our Safeguarding Policy.

Parents or guardians therefore need to give prior consent to enable the Church to either take or use still or moving images of their children.

And in addition, our Church policy on the use of still and moving images of adults recognises that this too is a very personal and sensitive matter which is protected by various laws.  We will not take or use any such images without the written permission of the person(s) concerned.

If you are willing for your still and moving  image to be used in our official Church  publications which  includes, videos, displays and posters,  weekly notices, monthly In Touch Magazines, HMC internet website, local newspapers, and you have not completed a permission form, please do so as soon as possible.
 
If you are completing the form as the parent /guardian of a child aged under 18, or as the carer of a vulnerable adult, you must complete Section A and Section B.

If you are completing the form for yourself, you must complete just Section C.

Our Church Council regularly considers our safeguarding policies to ensure that we fully comply with all Methodist Church of Great Britain Safeguarding, Human Rights and Data Protection requirements.

If, despite the safeguards outlined above, you do not wish any still or moving images to be taken of yourself, children, or other family members, please make contact with the person in charge of the event at which the images are likely to be taken is taking place, or a Church Steward, and they will take all reasonable action to meet your request.

Safeguarding forms and who has to complete them

Some of our office holders, leaders and helpers have to undergo the enhanced  Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checking process, and also sign the Methodist Church Declaration Form.

Others, who have no regular or direct contact with children, young people or vulnerable adults are just  required to complete the Methodist Church declaration.

The DBS forms and guidance pack are individually bar coded and are acquired direct by our Church Safeguarding Group.  They are then issued as required.  The Methodist Church declaration forms will also be provided for completion by our Safeguarding Group, but can also be downloaded from the Methodist Church website.

People requiring both a DBS check and the Methodist Church declaration

All of the following people must be checked by DBS and also sign the declaration required by The Methodist Church. This requires notification of any criminal convictions or formal police cautions before either their appointment, or their groups use of the premises under licence, is considered by the Church Council.

  • All employees and voluntary young people’s and vulnerable adult’s  workers  and  helpers appointed by  Church Council;
  • Any other office and job holders appointed by Church Council who may come into contact with young people or vulnerable adults on an occasional basis;
  • All  employees, voluntary leaders and helpers of groups meeting under licence;
  • All organisers and helpers of special events, using the premises under licence, where young people or vulnerable adults are likely to be present.  

People requiring only  the Methodist Church declaration

All of the following people are required to complete and  sign the declaration required by The Methodist Church. This is to  assure The Church Council that all reasonable care has been  taken to ensure that anyone who has either a criminal conviction or a police caution is not  appointed to either:

  • any of the following offices or jobs:
    • Any work with young people aged under 18 or vulnerable adults;
    • Pastoral Visitor;
    • Local Preacher, worship leader, musician or choir leader;
    • Church steward, property steward, communion steward;
    • Church Council  member or  St Neots and Huntingdon Circuit Meeting member;
  • or any office or job which may involve:
    • Lone access to church premises or direct contact with young people or  vulnerable   adults when no other adult is present;
    • Carrying out duties away from the church premises which may be seen as representing Huntingdon Methodist Church;
    • Holding a key to Huntingdon Methodist Church premises.

If you require more information please contact one of our Safeguarding Group.

Links to other sites with safeguarding advice and information

The information on this site has been agreed and approved by Huntingdon Methodist Church Council, and is reviewed on a regular basis.  The following links are to other sites which also contain  information about Safeguarding issues.

Also below are some useful emergency telephone numbers including night and weekend support from Cambridgeshire County Council and NSPCC (National  Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Children).

Internet sites

The Methodist Church http://www.methodist.org.uk

Methodist Church (Children) http://www.methodistchildren.org.uk

Disclosure and Barring Service https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/disclosure-and-barring-service

Churches Agency for Safeguarding http://www.churchsafe.org.uk

Childline http://www.childline.org.uk

Action for Children (formerly NCH) http://www.actionforchildren.org.uk

NSPCC http://www.nspcc.org.uk

Cambridgeshire County Council http://www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk

Methodist Publishing House http://www.methodistpublishing.org.uk/

Barnardo's http://www.barnardos.org.uk

Emergency telephone numbers

Childline 0800 1111

Cambridgeshire County Council Contact Centre 0845 045 5203

Cambridgeshire County Council Emergency Team (night and weekends) 01733 234724

NSPCC 0808 800 5000

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