Policy for Safeguarding Children and Vulnerable Adults
One Million Mentors (1MM) is committed to creating a culture of safety, equality and protection for children, young people and vulnerable adults who enter mentoring relationships through our partner organisations. This policy applies to all staff and mentors and sets out the overarching principles which guide 1MM’s approach to safeguarding.
Part One: outlines 1MM’s policy statements and supporting frameworks for the safeguarding and protection of children, young people and vulnerable adults.
Part Two: contains 1MM’s organisational procedures, including the processes to be followed when responding to a child protection concern.
PART ONE – SAFEGUARDING POLICY
All staff and mentors are expected to comply with the requirements of this policy and be aware of their responsibilities for safeguarding and protecting children from harm. 1MM also recognises its duty of care to mentees over the age of 18, including those who our partner organisations deem to be vulnerable adults.
1.1 Statement of intent
1MM recognises that:
- a child centred approach is fundamental to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of every child;
- all children, regardless of age, disability, gender, racial heritage, religious belief, sexual orientation or identity, have a right to equal protection from all types of harm and abuse;
- staff and mentors have an important role to play in safeguarding children and protecting them from abuse;
- working in partnership with children and other agencies is essential to ensure that safeguarding is embedded throughout the mentoring process.
1MM will seek to keep children, young people and vulnerable adults safe by:
- appointing a Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) for children and young people, a named Deputy and a Board level lead to take responsibility for 1MM’s safeguarding arrangements;
- using safe recruitment practices for individuals who work regularly with children, including policies as to when partner organisations should complete a criminal records check;
- verifying that partner organisations have appropriate safeguarding policies in place;
- providing effective management of staff and mentors through supervision, support, training and quality assurance measures;
- adopting child protection and safeguarding practices throughout the mentoring process, including on our online platforms;
- delivering an appropriate level of safeguarding and child protection awareness training to all staff and mentors;
- ensuring that partner organisations have effective measures in place to manage allegations, complaints and whistleblowing;
- developing effective procedures to be followed when responding to child protection concerns;
- recording and storing information professionally and securely;
- sharing relevant information and concerns appropriately with individuals or agencies who need to know, including partner organisations and local safeguarding leads;
- seeking and listening to the views of children and young people, taking account of their wishes and feelings when reaching decisions that affect them as individuals and in the development of mentoring services;
- creating an anti-bullying environment by verifying that partner organisations have procedures in place to effectively deal with any bullying which does arise, including online;
- applying Health and Safety measures as set out in the policies of partner organisations to ensure that all activities are delivered in a safe and supportive environment.
1.2 Legal framework and other relevant policies
This policy has been drawn up on the basis of law and guidance that seeks to protect children, namely:
- Children Acts 1989 and 2004
- Children and Social Work Act 2017
- Data Protection Act 2018 – General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
- Equality Act 2010
- United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child 1991
- Human Rights Act 1998
- Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006
- Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018
This policy should be read alongside other relevant guidelines and procedures. For staff directly employed by 1MM this will include the following internal policies and procedures:
- Data Protection
- Dignity at Work – which includes guidance on Bullying and Harassment
- Disciplinary Policy
- Equal Opportunities and Diversity Policy
- Grievance Policy and Procedures
- Health and Safety Policy
- Staff Handbook
- Whistleblowing Policy
Partner organisations should ensure that mentors have access to similar supporting materials within their relevant business areas and attention is also drawn to 1MM’s internal procedures as set out in Part Two of this policy.
1.3 Contact details
Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL)
Name: Sandra Tilley
Phone: 07802 212355
Name: Katie Hilder
Phone: 07467 148165
1.4 Review process
IMM is committed to reviewing our safeguarding policy and good practice annually.
This policy was last reviewed on: 10 September 2018
PART TWO – Organisational Procedures
2.1 Safeguarding policies and processes
One Million Mentors (1MM) is committed to ensuring that our safeguarding policies and procedures are reviewed and audited at regular intervals and are readily accessible to all staff and mentors. In this process 1MM will work with partner organisations and local safeguarding leads to ensure that our guidance is up to date and relevant.
2.2 Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL)
Details of the role of the Designated Safeguarding Lead can be found listed above in this document.
2.3 Safer Recruitment and Selection Processes
1MM is a project within UpRising Leadership Ltd and currently recruits and selects staff in line with the guidance set out in their policies and procedures.
In addition, 1MM liaises with Mentor Co-ordinators and Safeguarding Leads within partner organisations to ensure that robust safer recruitment and selection processes are in place when matching potential mentors. This includes completing relevant DBS checks, verifying ID and obtaining at least two references.
2.4 Management of Staff
1MM’s delivers both online and face to face training on the role of a mentor. Partner organisations are required to assign a Mentor Co-ordinator to provide support to both mentors and mentees, along with liaising with 1MM on issues relating to quality assurance and delivery.
2.5 (a) Codes of Conduct / Practice
Details of 1MM’s Code of Practice can be found here, and the Code of Conduct can be found here.
2.5 (b) Managing allegations, including handling complaints and whistle blowing
1MM currently follows guidance set out in UpRising’s Disciplinary and Whistleblowing policies. In addition, 1MM ensures that partner organisations have similar procedures in place for managing allegations, complaints and whistleblowing and that they are readily accessible to mentees and mentors.
2.6 Safeguarding children training
All staff and mentors receive safeguarding and child protection training appropriate to their role. This is delivered through 1MM’s online platforms or during face to face induction training.
2.7 Safeguarding procedures – responding to allegations, observations or admissions of abuse.
It is important to remember that, although staff and mentors are not expected to be experts in identifying child abuse, they do have a duty of care to respond appropriately to any issues which may arise. They should understand their role in keeping mentees safe and know who to contact within the relevant partner organisation to report or seek advice on safeguarding issues. This will usually be the Designated Safeguarding Lead or Mentor Co-ordinator,
Further guidance can be found in here.
2.8 Information management
1MM currently follows guidance set out in UpRising’s Confidentiality Policy when recording child protection concerns and ensuing actions. This states that information will be shared if a mentor has any concerns regarding the safety and wellbeing of a child, young person or vulnerable adult, a practice reiterated in the Mentoring Agreement signed by both mentee and mentor.
2.9 Seeking and listening to the views of children, young people and vulnerable adults
Safeguarding policies and procedures are reviewed on a regular basis and 1MM, through the use of surveys and mentoring outcomes, will use the views of mentees to inform and evaluate the mentoring process.
2.10 Anti-bullying policy
1MM believes that mentoring relationships should take place in an atmosphere free from all forms of harassment and bullying. It currently follows guidance contained in UpRising’s Dignity at Work Policy and, as part of the collaboration agreement, requires partner organisations to have similar guidelines in place.
2.11 Health and Safety Policy
1MM is committed to ensuring that mentoring relationships are conducted in safe and secure environments in which young people can thrive and develop. 1MM currently follows guidance set out in UpRising’s Health and Safety Policy and, as part of the collaboration agreement, requires partner organisations to have similar guidelines in place.
2.12 Roles and Responsibilities
Safeguarding is the individual responsibility of each person and the lines of accountability for responding to concerns apply equally to all staff, mentors and partner organisations.
The Advisory Board is accountable for 1MM and therefore all safeguarding arrangements within the organisation. They will:
- Receive an annual report on safeguarding
- Agree the Safeguarding Policy
- Have a named lead to take responsibility for 1MM’s safeguarding arrangements
The Director is accountable to the Advisory Board for safeguarding arrangements within the organisation. Their role is to:
- Ensure a clear framework for management accountability for safeguarding, including quality assurance and risk;
- Give leadership on safeguarding as a corporate issue;
- Ensure that safeguarding is an integral part of 1MM’s Strategic Plan.
Regional Managers and Mentor Co-ordinators should ensure that safe recruitment practices are in place and that staff and mentors have an awareness of safeguarding appropriate to their role
Programme staff and mentors are accountable to their Regional Manager or Mentor Co-ordinator for safeguarding within their work. They will:
- Be responsible for the safe delivery, quality and effectiveness of the services they provide;
- Be alert to safeguarding issues in all aspects of their work;
- Remember that the welfare of the child or vulnerable adult is paramount and know how to respond if they have concerns about a mentee or the behaviour of a colleague;
- Use supervision and / or appraisal to reflect on practice in relation to safeguarding;
- Attend safeguarding briefings or training as necessary.
Definitions of Terms
A form of maltreatment of a child. Somebody may abuse or neglect a child by inflicting harm, or by failing to act to prevent harm. Children may be abused in a family or in an institutional or community setting by those known to them or, more rarely, by others. Abuse can take place wholly online, or technology may be used to facilitate offline abuse. Children may be abused by an adult or adults, or another child or children.
TYPES OF ABUSE
The persistent emotional maltreatment of a child such as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on the child’s emotional development. It may involve conveying to a child that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate, or valued only insofar as they meet the needs of another person. It may include not giving the child opportunities to express their views, deliberately silencing them or ‘making fun’ of what they say or how they communicate. It may feature age or developmentally inappropriate expectations being imposed on children. These may include interactions that are beyond a child’s developmental capability, as well as overprotection and limitation of exploration and learning, or preventing the child participating in normal social interaction. It may involve seeing or hearing the ill-treatment of another. It may involve serious bullying (including cyber bullying), causing children frequently to feel frightened or in danger, or the exploitation or corruption of children. Some level of emotional abuse is involved in all types of maltreatment of a child, though it may occur alone.
The persistent failure to meet a child’s basic physical and/or psychological needs, likely to result in the serious impairment of the child’s health or development. Neglect may occur during pregnancy as a result of maternal substance abuse. Once a child is born, neglect may involve a parent or carer failing to:
- Provide adequate food, clothing and shelter (including exclusion from home or abandonment)
- Protect a child from physical and emotional harm or danger
- Ensure adequate supervision (including the use of inadequate caregivers)
- Ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment
It may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to, a child’s basic emotional needs.
A form of abuse which may involve hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning or scalding, drowning, suffocating or otherwise causing physical harm to a child. Physical harm may also be caused when a parent or carer fabricates the symptoms of, or deliberately induces, illness in a child.
Involves forcing or enticing a child or young person to take part in sexual activities, not necessarily involving a high level of violence, whether or not the child is aware of what is happening. The activities may involve physical contact, including assault by penetration (for example, rape or oral sex) or non-penetrative acts such as masturbation, kissing, rubbing and touching outside of clothing. They may also include non-contact activities, such as involving children in looking at, or in the production of, sexual images, watching sexual activities, encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways, or grooming a child in preparation for abuse. Sexual abuse can take place online, and technology can be used to facilitate offline abuse. Sexual abuse is not solely perpetrated by adult males. Women can also commit acts of sexual abuse, as can other children.
Anyone who has not yet reached their 18th birthday. The fact that a child has reached 16 years of age, is living independently or is in further education, is a member of the armed forces, is in hospital or in custody in the secure estate, does not change their status or entitlements to services or protection.
A vulnerable adult is a person aged 18 or over:
- who is, or may be, in need of community care services by reason of disability, age or illness; and
- is, or may be, unable to take care of him or herself, or unable to protect him or herself, against significant harm or exploitation.
Tel: 0808 800 5000
What to do if you’re worried a child is being abused – 2006.
Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018
Working Together to Safeguard Children: a guide to inter-agency working to safeguard and promote the welfare of children (PDF).