NYSCP Writing a Child Protection Policy - North Yorkshire

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Writing a Child Protection Policy

Writing a Child Protection Policy

Introduction

The North Yorkshire Safeguarding Children Partnership (NYSCP) recommends that every organisation whose members come directly in contact with children and young people should have a Safeguarding Policy.  Each policy will need to reflect the activities of the organisation and the individuals involved.  Due to the diverse ways in which organisations work with children each agency should produce a policy which is reflective of its service and its organisational needs. 

This guidance has been prepared to help partners identify the common themes which should be included in the safeguarding policies and includes a draft safeguarding policy (Appendix One) and Implementation Checklist (Appendix Two) for guidance only.  This policy should not be developed in isolation and links to other policies partners should have in place such as whistleblowing and safe recruitment practice.

Help with preparing a safeguarding policy

In preparing a draft safeguarding policy, the NYSCP recommends the guidance produced by the NSPCC.  Publications are available from NSPCC website at:

https://learning.nspcc.org.uk/safeguarding-child-protection

If you are part of a national organisation, your organisation may already have a template policy for adoption by local offices, or they may be able to offer advice and support.  If you are a school, sample school safeguarding policies, guidance for safe working practice and safeguarding audit tools are available for education and early years settings on cyps.info.  Further guidance is available on the NYSCP website:

For Early Years Providers:

For Schools and Colleges:

Operation of the policy

A safeguarding or child protection policy statement should provide clear information to staff, parents, children and young people and their families about how safeguarding and wellbeing of children and young people will be addressed.

The organisational child protection policy should set out:

  • the organisation’s commitment to protecting all children and young people
  • more detailed policies and procedures the organisation will put in place to keep children safe and respond to child protection concerns.

The policy should help prevent abuse and protect children and should set out:

  • What the organisation wishes to say about keeping children safe
  • Why the organisation is taking these steps
  • How, in broad terms, the organisation is going to meet its responsibilities to keep children and young people safe
  • Who it applies and relates to (for example all staff and volunteers, children up to 18 years old)
  • Specific roles, functions and responsibilities of all staff
  • How the organisation will put the policy into action and how it links to other relevant policies and procedures, for example policies relating to behaviour, equality, safe recruitment, whistleblowing, use of photographs and videos, internet use, etc.
  • Recognise the needs of for equality and the barriers children and young people may face, especially around communication
  • Briefly state the main law and guidance that supports the policy

Writing a Safeguarding Policy

An organisational Safeguarding or Child Protection Policy should be a public facing document.  The policy should not be developed in isolation and it is recommended that as well as involving its staff, organisations should consider involving:

  • Children
  • Young people
  • Their families and
  • Partner organisations

The Safeguarding Policy should be:

  • Written in a clear and easily understandable way
  • Approved and endorsed by the relevant governing body (i.e. Full Governing Body, Trustees or Proprietors)
  • Be mandatory for all staff and volunteers
  • Be kept under review of a maximum of every three years or when there is a change which impacts the policy, whichever is the sooner
  • Be published on the organisation’s website and available to the children, young people, their parents, carers and families, general public, staff and volunteers

To be effective it must give clear instructions on what action is to be taken, when and by whom. 

Check List

The Safeguarding Policy should include:

  • The name and purpose of the organisation
  • Contact details of the Safeguarding Lead Who and any identified Deputies
  • Identify roles and responsibilities
  • Provide definitions of the different kinds of abuse (please see examples in template)
  • Step by step guidance on what to do if children need protecting (this should link to NYSCP procedures and practice guidance).  You may also want to incorporate guidance specific to certain issues, (e.g. child sexual exploitation, radicalisation, online abuse, peer on peer abuse, domestic abuse, missing children and young people, honour based violence, female genital mutilation, special needs, etc.)
  • Identify how information regarding safeguarding concerns is recorded and shared
  • Links to the organisation’s policy for the safe recruitment and induction of staff and volunteers (See NYSCP Practice Guidance)
  • Links to the organisation’s complaints and whistle blowing procedures
  • Links to the organisation policy for dealing with and recording allegations against staff/volunteers/other young people (this should include informing the Local Authority Designated Officer within one working day)
  • Identify lines of communication
  • Contact details for local Children and Families Service and police, including out of hours contacts (see www.safeguardingchildren.co.uk for more information)

The above bullet points are not an exhaustive list. Depending on the nature of the organisation, it may also be relevant to include information which relates to specific services and functions provided, for example, safeguarding procedures if the organisation takes children and young people off site, links to e-safety issues, etc.

Implementation

The policy must be an agreed protocol for the entire organisation.  It is not sufficient to simply identify a number of core principals and not follow these through with an appropriate action plan and adequate resources.  In order to implement the policy, organisations need to ensure that they identify appropriate actions and responsible staff to ensure the policy is embedded into the organisations culture.

In order to support the implementation of a safeguarding/child protection policy it is recommended that each organisation:

  • Identifies a Safeguarding Lead with a clearly defined role in relation to safeguarding and who is responsible for implementation of the Safeguarding Policy 
    • They should have appropriate training in relation to safeguarding
    • They should be identified as a person who should be contacted if safeguarding concerns are identified
  • Has a training programme to ensure that all staff are provided with the training they need to support the continued implementation of the policy
  • Have adequate arrangements to discuss safeguarding concerns in supervision

Safeguarding Policies should be a public facing document.  The Safeguarding/Child Protection Policy should be publicised within the organisation, to service users and partners, and where possible placed on the organisation’s website.

Writing aChild Protection Policy Practice Guidance:

Download the Draft Template

Download the Implementation Checklist

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