Safeguarding
Safeguarding

Safeguarding

The safeguarding of children and vulnerable adults is very important, and a whole section of this web site is devoted to offering information. guidance, and support in this area. Here you can find:

In 2007 the Catholic Church in England and Wales agreed on a policy for the protection of children and vulnerable adults who directly or indirectly come under their charge. Each parish has been asked to appoint a Safeguarding Representative who works independently of the clergy and parish personnel. The Representative of this parish can be contacted at parishsafeguarding[at]shmi.info or by leaving an anonymous contact number with the Diocesan Safeguarding Advisor, Tel: 020 7798 9350. The Safeguarding Representative will then return your call.

Here, we hope you will be able to find any information or help that you might need. We have started by explaining exactly what we mean by “Safeguarding”, why we need procedures and what service our Safeguarding Representative provides to our parish. We give details of exactly how you can contact her if you wish to, and we also have some links to other sites that you might find helpful. If you cannot find what you need here, simply go to our contact page and submit any questions you like. Your feedback on the information we provide here is always welcomed!

What do we mean by “Safeguarding”?

In every community there must be awareness that those who are most vulnerable have to be protected. This is the case in a parish just as it is in any other community of people who come together to live, work and grow alongside each other. In our society we have identified children and some adults as particularly vulnerable and we have developed a strategy for protecting them to the very best of our ability. In our parish we believe that each person is made in the image and likeness of God, and therefore is endowed with immense dignity, and has the right for that dignity to be respected and recognized at all times. Any offence against the dignity and rights of the human person is an offence against God. The violation of the human person is always wrong; the violation of the dignity of a child by any abuse, but in particular, sexual abuse is especially evil. The Church is called to be a community that gives witness to the love of God by valuing and caring for the most vulnerable people, especially children. The Church therefore, proclaims the dignity of all children and strives to ensure the safety and well-being of every child in it’s care, and to protect them from abuse by whomsoever it is perpetrated.

What is the purpose of having Safeguarding Procedures?

Despite our high ideals, we are now more than ever aware of the harm that has been done to some vulnerable people, especially children in some church communities. This harm can take a number of forms: emotional, physical, sexual, and harm by neglect. We understand today more than ever before, that sexual abuse can damage all aspects of a person’s life; their personal relationships, their spiritual growth, and their ability to function in the world. The subject of our procedures is therefore all forms of abuse, with particular emphasis on sexual abuse. The procedures to be used throughout the Diocese are to ensure:

This parish and the Diocese of Westminster unhesitatingly accept and will maintain the “paramountcy principle” when dealing with any matter of alleged abuse of minors: that is, all other considerations are secondary to the protection of minors from actual or possible abuse.

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