What Should Be in a Child Safeguarding Policy?
A Child Safeguarding Policy must include a statement setting out the organisation or group's commitment to protecting children in its care, and a detailed set of policies and procedures explaining the steps adults within the group must take to keep children safe.
These policies would cover a child or young person who has not yet reached their 18th birthday (or an adult at risk, which is a person aged 18 or above who is unable to look after their own welfare, property, rights and is at risk of harm because they have a disability, mental disorder, illness or physical or mental infirmity).
A Child Safeguarding Policy must be drawn up with the following considerations in mind:
- Who or what within the organisation could present a potential risk to children?
- Does the organisation’s recruitment policy ensure staff and volunteers are suitable to work with children?
- Is there a mechanism in place to ensure child welfare concerns can be raised with the right people?
- How should the organisation respond to any concerns or allegations concerning child safety?
- Does the Child Safeguarding Policy fit in with other procedures and rules throughout the organisation?
Organisations must also go beyond simply drawing up a Child Safeguarding Policy and ensure every member of staff and volunteer is aware of it and knows where to find it. For full transparency, it must be accessible both to internal and external stakeholders, including members of the public, and reviewed on a regular basis. If any changes are made to the policy, people should be informed so they know about the latest updates.
Any Child Safeguarding Policy must be in line with the legal framework set out in the following:
- The Children's Act 1989
- The Sexual Offences Act 2003
- The Children Act 2004
- The Children and Young Persons Act 2008
- The Care Act 2014
- The Children and Family Act 2014
- Serious Crime Act 2015
- Modern Slavery Act 2015