Created: July 2020 by Jenny Owen
Last Reviewed/Revised: July 2023 by Nancy Monaghan
Next Review: Due July 2024
- Safeguarding Policy Statement
- Safeguarding and Wellbeing During COVID-19
- Safeguarding Report Form
- Health and Safety Policy
- Anti-bullying Policy
- Equality and Inclusion Policy
- Online Code of Conduct
Wild Things Performing Arts CIC is fully committed to safeguarding the well-being of all children and vulnerable adults who take part in its activities. The following document is intended to include all participants accessing Wild Things Performing Arts activities. All participants have a right to protection, and the needs of disabled participants and others who may be particularly vulnerable must be considered. Wild Things Performing Arts CIC will ensure the safety and protection of all children and vulnerable adults involved in its activities through adherence to the Safeguarding guidelines outlined below. Staff, volunteers, and anyone else who comes into contact with participants should be fully aware of this policy. They should also show respect and understanding for the rights, safety and welfare of other staff and volunteers, and conduct themselves in a way that reflects the inclusive ethos of Wild Things Performing Arts CIC. The process of implementing the policy is the joint responsibility of the Designated Safeguarding Lead, the Deputy Safeguarding Leads and Directors. Everyone involved in the company should have access to this child protection policy.
Wild Things Performing Arts’ Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) is Nancy Monaghan. The Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead (DDSL) is Jenny Owen.
- Provide children and vulnerable adults with appropriate safety and protection while they are in the care of Wild Things Performing Arts CIC.
- Create an environment where everybody feels safe, secure, and valued.
- Develop awareness in all staff and volunteers of the need for safeguarding and of their responsibilities in identifying abuse.
- Allow all staff and volunteers to make informed and confident responses to specific safeguarding issues.
- To clarify safeguarding procedures to all interested parties.
Staff Behaviour Statement
To promote the welfare of children and vulnerable adults, and reduce the likelihood of allegations being made, all staff and volunteers should demonstrate exemplary behaviour by:
- Promoting our inclusive ethos – this means treating all participants equally, and with respect and dignity, while considering and readily adapting to individual needs.
- Avoiding being the only responsible adult alone with children or vulnerable adults where possible.
- Avoiding private or unobserved interaction with children or vulnerable adults where possible and encouraging open communication with no secrets.
- Ensuring that a culture of openness exists to enable any issues or concerns to be raised and discussed.
- Giving attentive and constructive feedback, rather than negative criticism.
- Being an excellent role model.
At least one member of staff present at any session run by Wild Things Performing Arts CIC must be trained in emergency first aid and hold an in-date certificate.
Staff will keep a written record of any injury that occurs, along with details of any treatment given.
Practices to be avoided
The following should be avoided except in emergencies (for example, if a participant sustains an injury and needs to be taken to hospital, or a parent/guardian fails to arrive to collect a child at the end of a session). If cases arise where these situations are unavoidable it should be with the full knowledge and consent of Wild Things Performing Arts’ Designated Safeguarding Lead, a Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead, or the parent/guardian or carer of the participant.
- Avoid spending time alone with a child or vulnerable adult where possible.
- Avoid taking or dropping off a child or vulnerable adult before or after an activity where possible.
The following should never be sanctioned. Staff should never:
- Discriminate against, show preferential treatment, or favour particular participants to the exclusion of others.
- Use language, make suggestions, or offer advice, which is inappropriate, offensive, or abusive, even in fun.
- Invite or allow children or vulnerable adults to your home unsupervised.
- Condone, or participate in, behaviour of children or vulnerable adults which is illegal, unsafe or abusive.
- Condone smoking or the consumption of alcohol by young people under the legal age. Staff are obliged to report any sightings of this to the young person’s parent/guardian.
- Allow or engage in any form of inappropriate contact with children or vulnerable adults.
- Assist with intimate personal care for a child or vulnerable adult, unless trained and qualified to do so and with the express written consent of a parent/guardian or carer.
- Allow participants to use inappropriate language unchallenged (e.g., swearing, racial/sexual taunts).
- Permit abusive behaviour or activities (e.g., bullying).
- Make assumptions based on rumour or hearsay.
- Fail to act upon and record any allegations made by a child or vulnerable adult.
- physical abuse: including hitting, slapping, punching, burning, misuse of medication, inappropriate restraint
- sexual abuse: including rape, indecent assault, inappropriate touching, exposure to pornographic material
- psychological or emotional abuse: including belittling, name calling, threats of harm, intimidation, isolation
- financial or material abuse: including stealing and fraud
- neglect and acts of omission: ignoring medical or physical care needs
- discriminatory abuse: including abuse based on race, gender, sexuality, disability, or anything else.
- institutional or organisational: including unsafe practices, lack of person-centred care.
Abuse may be carried out deliberately or unknowingly. Abuse may be a single act or repeated acts.
Signs to look out for which may suggest that a child or vulnerable adult is being abused or is at risk of abuse include:
- unusual injuries, including bruises, burns, fractures, bite marks or signs of self-harm
- consistently poor hygiene, poor living conditions or inappropriate clothing
- communicating aggressively or using sexual language
- appearing withdrawn, guarded, anxious or frightened, particularly around certain individuals
Responding to Allegations or Suspicions of Abuse
Wild Things Performing Arts realises that it has a duty of care to act on reports or suspicions of abuse or neglect.
It is not the responsibility of anyone working at Wild Things Performing Arts to decide whether or not abuse of a child or vulnerable adult has taken place. However, there is a responsibility to act on any concerns by reporting these to the appropriate authorities.
If you suspect that any child or vulnerable adult is being abused:
- Always refer the case to the Designated Safeguarding Lead, or a Deputy; do not investigate it yourself.
- Do not approach a suspected abuser yourself. We will seek the advice of social services on who should approach the alleged abuser (or the parents of the alleged abuser if the alleged abuser is a child).
- Ensure that the child or vulnerable adult is given the opportunity to talk to you or an independent person.
- Listen to the child or vulnerable adult without interruption and do not ask leading questions about what you may suspect.
- Write down the details, as you know them, on the Safeguarding Report Form.
- Accept what the child or vulnerable adult says at face value.
- Do not pass judgement on what is said but do try to alleviate any fears or guilt the child or vulnerable adult may have.
- Make it clear that you can offer support but that you must pass on the information.
Please follow the reporting procedures and utilise the Safeguarding Report Form provided.
If you receive an allegation of abuse from an adult:
- Contact the Designated Safeguarding Lead or a Deputy. All information, however trivial it may appear, must be shared.
- Record the nature of the allegations in detail using the Safeguarding Report Form.
- Do not try to resolve the issue yourself; follow the reporting procedures and use the Safeguarding Report Form provided. We will seek the advice of social services on who should approach the alleged abuser (or the parents of the alleged abuser if the alleged abuser is a child).
If a Wild Things Performing Arts staff member or volunteer is suspected of abuse
- Staff or volunteers who hear an allegation of abuse against another representative of Wild Things Performing Arts CIC (e.g., staff, volunteers), or indeed themselves, should report the matter immediately to the Designated Safeguarding Lead or a Deputy.
- Wild Things Performing Arts will assure all staff/volunteers that it will fully support and protect anyone who in good faith reports their concern that a colleague is, or may be, abusing a child or vulnerable adult.
- If, following consideration, the allegation is clearly about poor practice, this will be dealt with it as a misconduct issue. The results of the police and safeguarding investigation may well influence and inform any disciplinary investigation into such misconduct, but all available information will be used to reach a decision.
- All incidents should be written up within one hour. Legally they must be recorded within 24 hours.
- All relevant information should be included in the Safeguarding Report Form.
- Handwritten or printed reports and records should be sealed in an envelope and marked “Confidential.” They should be passed by hand to the Designated Safeguarding Lead, or a Deputy, who will then be accountable for the safe storage and processing of the information.
- Where hand delivery is not possible, typed reports and records should be attached to emails – both the subject line and attachment should be marked “Confidential.” They should be sent to the Designated Safeguarding Person, or a Deputy, who will then be accountable for the safe storage and processing of the information.
- The Designated Safeguarding Lead will refer the allegation to Oldham Council Social Services, who may involve the police.
- If the Designated Safeguarding Lead or Deputy cannot be contacted and the welfare of the child or vulnerable adult is at risk, then Oldham Council Social Services should be contacted. Contact details are listed at the end of this policy.
- The parent/guardian of the child or carer of the vulnerable adult will be contacted as soon as possible following advice from the social services department.
Every effort should be made to ensure that confidentiality is maintained for all concerned. Information should be handled and disseminated on a need-to-know basis only. This includes the following people:
- The Designated Safeguarding Lead and/or Deputy
- Relevant staff members
- The parent/guardian/carer of the person who is alleged to have been abused
- The person making the allegation
- Social services/police
Information for social services or the police about suspected abuse
- The child/vulnerable adult’s name, age, and date of birth.
- The child/vulnerable adult’s home address and telephone number.
- Whether or not the person making the report is expressing their own concerns or those of someone else.
- A description of the incident/cause for concern, using only facts. Include a description of any visible bruising or other injuries. Also include any indirect signs, such as behavioural changes.
- The child/vulnerable adult’s account, if it can be given, of what has happened, using their own words.
- Details of witnesses to the incidents.
- Details of any immediate action taken, including contact with the child/vulnerable adult’s parents/guardians/carers on the issue, or any consultation with anyone else.
- Whether the child/vulnerable adult has reported the incident, and if not, whether the child/vulnerable adult has been spoken to, and details of any such conversation.
- Details of the alleged abuser if any allegations have been made.
- Name of contact who took referral of the incident at the police or social services. (Where possible referral to the police or social services should be confirmed in writing within 24 hours.)
Wild Things Performing Arts CIC’s Recruitment Policy
Wild Things Performing Arts recognises that anyone may have the potential to abuse children and/or vulnerable adults in some way and that all reasonable steps must be taken to ensure unsuitable people are prevented from working with children and/or vulnerable adults. Pre-selection checks must include the following:
- The job requirements and responsibilities should be clarified with each individual.
- Safer recruitment practices are adhered to. CVs are carefully scrutinised to ensure that all gaps in employment are accounted for, references are checked, and previous employers are requested to discuss any concerns.
- All staff and volunteers must have a valid enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service check, relevant to the group they will be working with (children and/or adults)
- Where possible, all DBS checks for Wild Things Performing Arts staff and volunteers will be obtained through the company.
- Where an individual who is hoping to work with Wild Things Performing Arts does not have a valid DBS check, Wild Things Performing Arts will request one at the earliest opportunity on their behalf. No one will be permitted to work with children or vulnerable adults until the relevant DBS clearance is completed.
- A confidential database is maintained with DBS clearance numbers, levels and dates for all staff working for Wild Things Performing Arts for the duration of their engagement.
- We have a bank of freelance staff who have had DBS checks through Wild Things Performing Arts, for emergency cover.
- Safeguarding procedures must be explained and training needs identified before contact with children or vulnerable adults commences.
Wild Things Performing Arts CIC’s Staff Training Policy
Wild Things Performing Arts CIC recognises that it is important for all staff to be trained in safeguarding practices, and for this training to be regularly refreshed. This is so that our staff can recognise and respond readily, effectively, and confidently to safeguarding concerns.
- All staff undergo Safeguarding training at a minimum Level 2, as soon as possible after recruitment.
- All staff appointed to be Designated Safeguarding Leads or Deputies undergo Designated Safeguarding Lead training at Level 3.
- All staff will refresh their Safeguarding and/or Designated Safeguarding Lead training every 2 years.
Designated Safeguarding Lead: Nancy Monaghan
Tel: 07891908912 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead: Jenny Owen
Oldham Council Social Services
Children’s Social Services: 0161 770 7777
8.40am – 5.00pm, Monday to Friday.
Out of Hours Emergencies: 0161 770 6936
5.00pm – 9.00am, Monday to Friday; 24 hours at weekends and Bank Holidays