Policies

Safeguarding for All Policy

Issue Date : July 2019

Review Date : July 2020

Introduction

Huddersfield Giants Community Trust places the safety and wellbeing of students and staff at the forefront of all its operations and acknowledges the range of activities that contribute to creating and maintaining an environment that promotes effective safeguarding practice.

The Safeguarding for All Policy provides for a coherent framework of practice to be in place and for all policies relating to this framework to address this priority. The Safeguarding for All Policy is reviewed each year and when/or changes in law, policy, guidance or best practice occur in order to ensure that it remains a key driver in the development of strategy on safeguarding.

Policy Statement

Huddersfield Giants Community Trust recognises its duties, statutory and otherwise to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children.

The Policy applies to all as Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility.

Huddersfield Giants Community Trust is committed to ensuring that it:

  • Provides a safe environment for children and young people to learn in
  • Identifies children and young people who are suffering, or likely to suffer, significant harm, and
  • Takes appropriate action to see that such children and young people are kept safe, both at home and at Huddersfield Giants Community Trust.

In pursuit of these aims, the governing body will approve and review policies and procedures with the aim of:

  • Raising awareness of issues relating to the welfare of children and young people and the promotion of a safe environment for the children and young people.
  • Establishing a clear line of accountability for the provision of services.
  • Identifying groups of more vulnerable children and young people with the view to providing ‘Early Help’ in line with current legislation.
  • Aiding the identification of children and young people at risk of significant harm, and providing procedures for reporting concerns
  • Establishing procedures for reporting and dealing with allegations of abuse against members of staff
  • The safe recruitment /employment of staff and the safe use of contractors
  • Promoting a culture of listening to children and young people to ensure best practice and keep their wishes at the centre of activities.
  • Reviewing processes of sharing information with other professionals.

Related Policies and Procedures

Key HGCT policies that contribute to the overarching Safeguarding for All Policy are listed below. Each of these policies addresses college strategy and operations relating to key college activities and safeguarding provision is made within all activities.

Anti-Harassment and Anti-Bullying Policy

Attendance Policy

Staff Handbook

Complaints Policy

Grievance Policy

ICT Policy

Health and Safety Policy

Whistleblowing Policy

Legislative Framework

Huddersfield Giants Community Trust operates its Safeguarding for All Policy through its acknowledgement and acceptance of its responsibilities set out in:

  • Children’s Act Section 11 (1989, 2004, 2008 and 2014)
  • Early Help Assessment (March 2014)
  • Early Years Common Inspection Framework (September 2015)
  • Children, Schools and Families Act (2010, 2014),
  • Education Act (2002, 2011)
  • Care Act (2014) and
  • other associated legislation.

Furthermore, safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, young people and people with care and support needs will be undertaken with due regard to:

Kirklees Council Safeguarding Board

https://www.kirkleessafeguardingchildren.co.uk/

What to do if you’re worried a child is being abused (March 2015) https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/419604/What to do if you are worried a child is being abused.pdf

Working together to Safeguard children’ (March 2015) https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment data/file/419595/Working_Together_to_Safeguard_Children.pdf

‘Keeping Children Safe in Education (September 2016)’ https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment data/file/550511/Keeping children safe in education.pdf

Information Sharing (March 2015) https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment

data/file/419628/Information_sharing_advice_safeguarding_practitioners.pdf

No Secrets (January 2015) https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment

data/file/194272/No secrets guidance on developing and implementing multi-agency policies and procedures to protect vulnerable adults from abuse.pdf

6

The Prevent Duty (March 2016)

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment data/file/445977/3799_Revised_Prevent_Duty_Guidance__England_Wales_V2-Interactive.pdf

Channel Duty Guidance (April 2015) https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment

data/file/425189/Channel_Duty_Guidance_April_2015.pdf

Female Genital Mutilation http://rotherhamscb.proceduresonline.com/chapters/p_fem_gen_mut.html

Safeguarding children and young people from sexual exploitation https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment data/file/278849/Safeguarding_Children_and_Young_People_from_Sexual_Exploitation.pdf

Safer Practice, Safer Learning- a whole organisation approach to safeguarding vulnerable adults for the learning and skills sector. Published by NIACE December 2007 (http://shop.niace.org.uk/safer-practice.html)

Forced Marriage Unit of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/travel-and-living-abroad/when-things-go-wrong/forced-marriage/)

NSPCC (www.nspcc.org.uk/)

Jisc User Safety Briefing (http://www.jisc.ac.uk/publications/briefingpapers/2005/pub_usersafetybp.aspx )

National Domestic Violence Helpline (http://www.nationaldomesticviolencehelpline.org.uk/ )

Online abuse Legislation, policy and practice https://www.nspcc.org.uk/preventing-abuse/child-abuse-and-neglect/online-abuse/legislation-policy-practice/

Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP) ( www.ceop.police.uk/ )

Women’s Aid (www.womensaid.org.uk/)

Apna Haq support for Asian Women (www.apna-haq.co.uk.

Karma Nirvana – Support for victims of honour crimes/ forced marriage (www.karmanirvana.org.uk)

Private Fostering – http://www.privatefostering.org.uk/

Working in partnership

Huddersfield Giants Community Trust will assist the local authorities to exercise its statutory functions. Where provision is provided by the Huddersfield Giants Community Trust to a partner organisation such as a school, the College will liaise with staff in the partner organisation to ensure that local procedures and protocols are adhered to.

In terms of partner agencies – awareness and appreciation of the role of others is essential for effective collaboration between practitioners and their organisations. Inter-agency and collaborative work is central to good practice in safeguarding.

Huddersfield Giants Community Trust will refer concerns that a child or young person might be at risk of significant harm to Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub, the Police or Channel and concerns for assessment of need and onward referral for other services if required to the Early Help Unit using the Early Help Assessment Form.

All referrals will need to evidence that consent has been provided by the subject of the referral as well as parent/carer, except where the referral relates to attendance matters or assistance in applications for parenting contracts, parenting orders, acceptable behaviour contracts and anti-social behaviour orders. Where there is a risk of significant harm and consent is not given then a justification will be provided of the need to share information.

Huddersfield Giants Community Trust works in partnership with the Safeguarding Unit and will attend the local FE Colleges’ Safeguarding Forums.

Purpose and Objectives

It is Huddersfield Giants Community Trust’s policy to ensure that guidelines, procedures, training and personal support are in place so that staff and learners can confidently identify and respond appropriately to concerns relating to the safety of all our learners.

It will ensure that designated personnel will be available to assist staff who identify concerns and that all concerns will be treated seriously.

No matter what the source of the information, Huddersfield Giants Community Trust will adopt the following procedure to ensure consistency. The procedure will consist of three steps:

  • Information gathering
  • Analysis
  • Action

It will ensure that all concerns about children are recorded accurately and where possible in the language given by the source of the concern.

In the context of working in Further Education, where the majority of individuals are over the age of 16, it is important to recognise that whilst the law allows consensual sexual activity at the age of 16, if the child requires help and support the lawful nature of the activity does not stop intervention. Examples of this may be:

  • Children and young people with care and support needs;
  • Children in relationships with much older individuals or individuals in a position of authority and trust;
  • Children who may be at risk of sexual abuse or exploitation;
  • Children who are parents;
  • Children whose care and support needs mean they are unlikely to be able to protect themselves despite their legal age.

Roles and Responsibilities

All adults working with or on behalf of children or vulnerable adults have a responsibility to protect them. There are however, key people within Huddersfield Giants Community Trust and the Local Authorities who have specific responsibilities under safeguarding procedures. Those internal persons named constitute Huddersfield Giants Community Trust safeguarding team.

Designated Senior Person (Named Person): Education Manager

  • Making sure all staff are aware how to raise safeguarding concerns
  • Ensuring all staff understand the symptoms of child abuse and neglect
  • Ensuring processes are in place for referring concerns to social care
  • Monitoring children who are the subject of child protection plans
  • Maintaining accurate and secure child protection records

Lead Designated Officer – is responsible for: Education Manager

  • supporting and assisting staff and learners who are reporting concerns;
  • liaising with Children & Young People’s and Adult Services as appropriate;
  • monitoring referrals and learner wellbeing through appropriate panel meetings
  • developing safeguarding training materials, files, procedures and contacts;
  • delivering training where appropriate;

Designated Person HR Lisa Hewitt (Surestart and Prevent, Lead Person DBS): Recruiting and vetting of staff and other relevant individuals within the Group, including DBS checks; Monitoring and acting upon any changes to legislative requirements; supporting and assisting staff or students making referrals; receiving and processing concerns related to the behaviour of staff; developing the Staff Code of Conduct, monitoring and organising safeguarding training.

The Designated Safeguarding Person is responsible for:

  • Referral of cases of suspected abuse or allegations to Children and Young People’s Services Social Care and/or The Police, Channel and appropriate agencies.
  • Providing advice and support to other staff on issues relating to child protection
  • Maintaining a proper record of any child protection referral, complaint or concern (even where that concern does not lead to a referral)
  • Ensuring that parents of children and young people within Huddersfield Giants Community Trust are aware of the Group’s Safeguarding policy
  • Liaising with the appropriate Children and Young People’s Social Care services, Safeguarding Boards and other appropriate agencies
  • Liaising with secondary schools and Academies which send pupils to Huddersfield Giants Community Trust to ensure that appropriate arrangements are made for the learners. This is achieved via the partnership arrangements made by the Project Leader for School Links.
  • Sharing pertinent and appropriate information with partner agencies and organisations in compliance with information sharing protocols and data protection law.
  • Ensuring that staff receive basic training in child protection issues and are aware of Huddersfield Giants Community Trust safeguarding procedures.
  • Have received training in child protection issues and inter-agency working, as required by the local Safeguarding Board, and will receive refresher training at least every 2 years
  • Ensuring that Huddersfield Giants Community Trust has procedures and policies which are consistent with the local Safeguarding Board’s procedures.

Recruitment of staff

All new staff will be subject to the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) in line with the HGCT safe recruitment policies and procedures.

All interviews for new staff include a question in regards to safeguarding and at least one member of the interviewing panel will have undertaken the ‘safer recruitment training’.

Agency workers and contractors with ‘intensive’ or frequent contact with Children and /or learners with personal and support needs will be expected to have an enhanced DBS check.

Disclosures for new staff and volunteers

All new staff and volunteer workers will be required to have a satisfactory enhanced DBS check as Huddersfield Giants Community Trust.

Any teaching staff whom do not have a valid DBS disclosure will not be allowed unsupervised access to children under the age of 18 or learners with support and care needs until this has been received by Huddersfield Giants Community Trust. A risk assessment must be undertaken and agreed on every occasion before the member of staff can commence employment.

Any members of staff whom do not have a valid DBS disclosure will not be allowed unsupervised access to children under the age of 18 or learners with support and care needs until this has been received by Huddersfield Giants Community Trust.

Existing staff

All Staff subject to renewed DBS checks by Huddersfield Giants Community Trust occur every 3 years and subscribe to the DBS Update Service.

It is the responsibility of every member of staff to disclose to Huddersfield Giants Community Trust any criminal convictions that are incurred during their employment. Failure to do so will be considered a disciplinary offence and in some circumstances may lead to dismissal.

Agency staff will not be allowed unsupervised access to children under the age of 18 or learners with support and care needs unless they have had a DBS check at an enhanced level within the last 12 months.

Contractors will not be allowed unsupervised access to children under the age of 18 or learners with support and care needs unless they have had a DBS check at an enhanced level. Access Huddersfield Giants Community Trust premises will be restricted and adequate supervision maintained.

Training

All staff will receive training to familiarise them with child protection issues and responsibilities and Huddersfield Giants Community Trust procedures and policies.

All newly recruited staff to have a clear understanding of their role and responsibilities in safeguarding children and young people and are aware of the associated procedures.

All Senior Managers are familiar with their role and responsibilities.

All staff are aware of their role and responsibilities and receive guidance on how to deal with suspicions or disclosures of abuse.

Members of staff must renew their training every 3 years and designated safeguarding staff every 2 years

Procedures

It is the duty by law of any member of staff, volunteer or visitor who receives a disclosure of abuse, or suspects that abuse may have occurred, to report it to a member of the safeguarding team. If a member of the team cannot be found then the matter should be brought to the attention of the most senior member of staff.

If appropriate, the member of the Safeguarding Team will refer cases of suspected abuse or allegations to the Multi Agency Safeguarding Team (MASH) by telephone in accordance with the Local Safeguarding Board Procedures.

It is not the job of Huddersfield Giants Community Trust to investigate allegations; this is the responsibility of the Authorities. However, essential information may help these investigations and details such as learner’s name, address, and date of birth, family composition, and reason for referral should be recorded. The name of the person who initially received the disclosure and whether or not the parents/guardians of the learner are aware of the referral should also be included.

Advice and guidance can be obtained from the MASH team, or the Local Safeguarding Board.

Support from the Designated Safeguarding team will be made available for staff dealing with safeguarding issues.

Professional Confidentiality

A member of staff must never agree with a learner to keep information confidential and where there is a safeguarding concern this must be reported to a member of the safeguarding team and may require further investigation by the appropriate authorities.

Staff will be informed of relevant information in respect of individual cases on a ‘need to know basis’ only. Any information shared with a member of staff in this way must be held confidentially by themselves.

Key Definitions and Concepts

Child Protection

Some children and young people are in need because they are suffering or likely to suffer “significant harm”. Where local authorities believe a young person is suffering, or likely to suffer, significant harm, they have a duty to make enquiries to decide whether they should take action to safeguard or promote the welfare of a young person.

Children in Need

Children and young people who are defined as being “in need‟ under Section 17 of the Children Act 1989, are those whose vulnerability is such that they are unlikely to reach or maintain a satisfactory level of health or development, or their health and development will be significantly impaired, without the provision of service(s). A child with a disability is a child in need.

Significant Harm

The concept of significant harm is the threshold that justifies compulsory intervention into family life in the best interests of the child or young person and gives local authorities a duty to make enquires as to whether to take action (Section 47, Children Act 1989) to safeguard or promote the welfare of a young person who is suffering, or likely to suffer significant harm. The Act also gives powers to the Police to take emergency action to protect a young person from significant harm.

Definitions of Abuse

The following explanations of types of possible signs of abuse are taken from Working Together to Safeguard Children.

Lists of signs and symptoms cannot provide a definitive diagnosis of abuse and many children or young people at some time of their life may exhibit one or maybe more of them. However, such signs and symptoms may suggest abuse if a young person exhibits either several of them, perhaps within a short space of time, or an extreme form of a particular symptom, or if a pattern of signs and symptoms emerges.

It is important that staff are aware of the signs and symptoms and, whilst they may be indicative of some other problem or issue, the possibility that the young person is being abused should not be discounted. Any concern about a young person who is showing signs of abuse or of being at risk of abuse should be followed up with the Safeguarding Team.

Physical Abuse

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.

Emotional Abuse

Is 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 children 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 the childs 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.

Neglect

Is the persistent failure to meet a child’s basic physical and/or psychological needs, likely to result in a serious impairment of the child’s health or development.  Neglect may occur in 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 harm and external harm or danger
  • Ensure adequate supervision (including the use of inadequate care-givers)
  • Or ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment.
  • It may also include neglect or, unresponsiveness to a child’s basic emotional needs.

Sexual Abuse

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 (including via the internet). Sexual abuse is not solely perpetrated by adult males. Women can also commit acts of sexual abuse, as can other children.

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is a collective term for procedures, which include the removal of part or all of the external female genitalia for cultural or other non-therapeutic reasons. The practice is medically unnecessary, extremely painful and has serious health consequences, both at the time when the mutilation is carried out and in later life. The procedure is typically performed on girls aged between 4 and 13, but in some cases it is performed on new-born infants or on young women before marriage or pregnancy. FGM has been a criminal offence in the U.K. since the Prohibition of Female Circumcision Act 1985 was passed. The Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003 replaced the 1985 Act and makes it an offence for the first time for UK nationals or permanent UK residents to carry out FGM abroad, or to aid, abet, counsel or procure the carrying out of FGM abroad, even in countries where the practice is legal. Suspicions may arise in a number of ways that a child is being prepared for FGM to take place abroad.

Consider whether any other indicators exist that FGM may have or has already taken place, for example:

  1. Preparations are being made to take a long holiday – arranging vaccinations or planning an absence from College;
  2. The young person has changed in behaviour after a prolonged absence from College; or
  3. The young person has health problems, particularly bladder or menstrual problems.

Child exploitation and online protection command (CEOP) (Gov.uk) The National Crime Agency’s Child Exploitation and Online Protection Command (CEOP) (formerly the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre) works with child protection partners across the UK and overseas to identify the main threats to children and coordinates activity against these threats to bring offenders to account. They protect children from harm online and offline, directly through NCA led operations and in partnership with local and international agencies.

Abuse and Neglect (Adults with care and support needs)

Huddersfield Giants Community Trust adopts the definition of harm (adults) as laid down by the Department of Health as follows:

Abuse is a violation of an individual’s human and civil rights by any other person or persons. In giving substance to that statement, however, consideration needs to be given to a number of factors.

Abuse may consist of a single act or repeated acts. It may be physical, verbal or psychological, it may be an act of neglect or an omission to act, or it may occur when a person with care and support needs is persuaded to enter into a financial or sexual transaction to which he or she has not consented, or cannot consent. Abuse can occur in any relationship and may result in significant harm to, or exploitation of, the person subjected to it.

  • physical abuse, including hitting, slapping, pushing, kicking, misuse of medication, restraint, or inappropriate sanctions;
  • sexual abuse, including rape and sexual assault or sexual acts to which the person with care and support needs has not consented, or could not consent or was pressured into consenting;
  • psychological abuse, including emotional abuse, threats of harm or abandonment, deprivation of contact, humiliation, blaming, controlling, intimidation, coercion, harassment, verbal abuse, isolation or withdrawal from services or supportive networks;
  • financial or material abuse, including theft, fraud, exploitation, pressure in connection with wills, property or inheritance or financial transactions, or the misuse or misappropriation of property, possessions or benefits;
  • neglect and acts of omission, including ignoring medical or physical care needs, failure to provide access to appropriate health, social care or educational services, the withholding of the necessities of life, such as medication, adequate nutrition and heating;
  • discriminatory abuse, including racist, sexist, that based on a person’s disability, and other forms of harassment, slurs or similar treatment.

Specific Issues and Further Information

Further information and specialise advice is available on areas such as forced marriage, female genital mutilation, those affected by drugs and alcohol abuse in families, fabricated illness, children abused through prostitution, complex (organised or multiple) abuse involving one or more abusers and a number of children. Forced marriage is a marriage conducted without the full consent of both parties where duress is a factor. This should not be confused with an ‘arranged marriage’. Forced marriage is regarded as a form of domestic abuse for adults, and where children are involve, as a form of child abuse. Initial concerns should be reported to the Designated Staff who will liaise with appropriate agencies.

Procedures for Handling and Responding to Disclosures and Allegations of Abuse

The following brief notes provide guidance for staff who receive a disclosure or who have concerns about allegations of abuse.

In addition staff are encouraged to contact the Designated Staff if they have any initial concerns about the possible child protection situation.

Huddersfield Giants Community Trust adopt a child and learner centred approach and the wishes of the child or young person are at the centre of all our activities.

Receiving a Disclosure

DO

  • Take allegations or suspicions of abuse seriously
  • Respond with tact and sensitivity to anyone who confides in you
  • Re-assure the person that it is right to speak to someone
  • Allow the person to speak in his/her own way and time
  • Discuss the need to refer to the appropriate person
  • Make notes using the person’s own words

DON’T

  • Promise confidentiality (only those who need to know will be told)
  • Make judgements
  • Investigate the allegation or suspicion of abuse
  • Ask leading questions or probe for details
  • Interpret what has been said or make assumptions about the situation
  • Contact parents/carers before seeking advice

Following up a Disclosure, Allegation or Suspicion of Abuse

  • Contact a member of Huddersfield Giants Community Trust Safeguarding Team as soon as practicable.
  • Provide written details on a safeguarding referral form – all written information and rough notes will be retained by the Designated Staff who will seek advice from the appropriate agencies and feed back to you.
  • Where there are serious concerns of ‘significant harm’ the Designated Staff will refer immediately to MASH
  • If urgent hospital treatment is needed for a young person whilst on Huddersfield Giants Community Trust premises, inform the Designated Staff if this relates to a child protection issue.
  • Both the young person, and if required, the member of staff to whom the disclosure was made can access support from counselling and support services.

Records and Monitoring

Huddersfield Giants Community Trust maintain up to date and accurate records of any cause for concern in regards to their learners. There is also an indication of the status of each individual case and when it is deemed appropriate to pass this information to other agencies.

Members of staff receiving a disclosure of or noticing signs of abuse should use Huddersfield Giants Community Trust’s safeguarding referral form to record these concerns as accurately and as soon as they can. These forms should be passed to a member of the safeguarding team and will be kept securely.

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