Safeguarding Policy

Door 84 Safeguarding Policy

The purpose and scope of this policy statement:

Door 84 Youth and Community Centre works with children, young people, vulnerable adults and where possible with their carers’ and families. We additionally work with local community members and other building users. Door 84 Youth and Community facilitates and coordinates various activities including: open access youth and community sessions, community events, open days, residentials, day trips; which may include remote supervision, specific project work, mentoring, one to one support working and engagement with other building users.

This policy is to be read in conjunction with our safeguarding policy and other related policies within the safeguarding category. Within this policy, children, young people, vulnerable adults and any other building users who use Door 84’s building or services will be referred to for the purpose of the policy as ‘participants.’

This policy statement applies to anyone working on behalf of Door 84 Youth and Community Centre, including senior managers, the board of trustees, paid staff, volunteers, sessional workers, project workers, agency staff and students. For the purpose of this policy all of the above will be referred to as “worker”, whether they are staff in a paid capacity or as an unpaid volunteer.

 

The aim of this policy statement is:

  • To protect participants who engage in Door 84’s services. This includes the family members of participants and workers within our services.
  • To provide workers with the overarching principles that guide our approach to safeguarding children, young people, vulnerable adults and other adults.
  • To provide a working document which provides guidance and further references to support workers in managing safeguarding scenarios.

We believe that:

  • Nobody should experience abuse of any kind.
  • We have a responsibility to promote the welfare of all participants and workers, to keep them safe and to practise in a way that both protects them and improves outcomes for all.
  • Doing nothing is not acceptable. Door 84 has a zero tolerance of abuse wherever it occurs and whoever is responsible.
  • Working in partnership with relevant agencies, in conjunction with local safeguarding procedures must be followed.
  • Safeguarding training is compulsory (role specific)

What are we Safeguarding Children, Young People and Adults From?

When refereeing to abuse within this policy we are including and working from the following definitions. The term abuse within this policy also covers neglectful treatment of children, young people, vulnerable adults and other adults; including workers.  Below is a brief yet non exhaustive list of definitions, types of abuse and the more common signs and symptoms of each one.

Abuse

Abuse is the maltreatment of a child or adult by another person, by either adults or children.  Someone may abuse or neglect an individual by causing harm, or by failing to act to prevent harm. Someone may be abused in a family or in an institutional, educational or community setting by those known to them or by others unknown to them e.g. via the internet.

Abuse and neglectful behaviour can and does happen to those from any background, culture, class, ethnicity or faith and can be physical, sexual or emotional. It is important that everyone involved in recognising the signs of abuse understand the physical and behavioural indicators or symptoms.

Signs of Neglect

Neglect can be a difficult form of abuse to recognise, yet it can have some of the most lasting and damaging effects on children and vulnerable adults. Workers must be vigilant towards this; the most common form of abuse in teenagers. Neglect also leaves victims more vulnerable to other forms of abuse and exploitation due to low self-esteem and self-worth.

Neglect is the persistent failure to meet a child or vulnerable adults basic physical and/or psychological needs, likely to result in the serious impairment of their health or development. The physical signs of neglect may include constant hunger, sometimes stealing food from others, constantly dirty or ‘smelly’, loss of weight, or being constantly underweight and inappropriate clothing for the conditions.

Changes in behaviour which may indicate neglect include complaining of being tired all the time, not requesting medical assistance and/or failing to be taken to or attend appointments, having few friends and mentioning being left alone or unsupervised.

Signs of Physical Abuse

Most children will collect cuts and bruises as part of the rough-and-tumble of daily life. Injuries should always be interpreted in light of the child’s medical and social history. Most accidental bruises are seen over bony parts of the body e.g. elbows, knees, shins and are often on the front of the body. Accidental bruising is generally less common in older children and adults. However, again, physical ability, mental ability to coordinate etc should be taken into consideration alongside reasonable explanation by the individual.

Bruising that is more likely to have been inflicted rather than accidental could include bruises or injuries that are either unexplained or inconsistent with the explanation given. Other signs of this include those visible or the ‘soft’ parts of the body where accidental injuries are unlikely, this could be on their cheeks, abdomen, back and buttocks.

Physical abuse may involve hitting, shaking, throwing, drowning, burning or scalding, poisoning, suffocating, or otherwise causing physical harm to an individual or failing to protect them from that harm. Physical harm may also be caused when a parent or carer fabricates the symptoms of, or deliberately induces illness in another person.

Signs of Sexual Abuse (Children)

Sexual abuse involves forcing or enticing a child 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. In fact, many children who are sexually abused will have no visible signs due to the perpetrator not wanting to leave evidence. Children may be afraid to tell due to fear of the consequences of disclosure amongst many other reasons in the grooming process.

Sexual abuse is not solely perpetrated by adult males; women can also commit acts of sexual abuse, as can other children. The idea of strangers as potential abusers is not a helpful message to covey. In the majority of child sexual abuse cases the perpetrator is someone who had a responsibility to keep them safe. Sexual abuse may involve physical contact including both penetrative and non-penetrative acts such as masturbation, kissing, rubbing and touching the outside of clothing.

They may also include non-contact activities, such as watching sexual activities, encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways, involving children in looking at, or in the production of, sexual images and grooming a child in preparation for abuse (including via the internet).

Signs can include extreme insecurity, lack of trust, disturbed, age inappropriate or harmful sexual behaviours. Personality changes, sexual knowledge which is beyond their age or what should be outside of their experiences. Sexual drawings, language which can be verbal or body language. Nightmares or it may be noticed they report poor sleep/ seem exhausted. An indicator can be promiscuity or acting in an overly sexualised way towards others including adults (due to the normalisation of sexual activities.)

In the case of Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE), children or young people may suddenly have new expensive items such as clothing, shoes or acquire additional cash or mobile phones.

A child under the age of 13 years cannot legally be considered as consenting to any sexual act with another person and would be categorised as a crime irrelevant of the child’s views. This would immediately be a safeguarding referral and need to be reported to police and social work teams.

Signs of Sexual Abuse (Vulnerable adults and others)

Sexual abuse against adults is more likely to be noticed due to verbal disclosure. However, in the case of vulnerable or chronically disabled adults some of the above may apply.

There are certain instances where adults are unable to give consent. Examples of this include those who are cared for having sexual relationships with an employed care giver or someone whom has a professional duty of care towards them. Additionally, those who do not have the mental capacity to make choices relating to safe sexual relationships under the Mental Capacity Act (2005).

When incidents occur between people who lack capacity, both parties should be treated as vulnerable adults. Staff should be sensitive and discreet and recognise the distress that can be caused to both parties and their families. Support should be provided to both parties. It may be that they have unmet needs for intimacy and companionship which staff can support them to meet in a safe way.

Sexual abuse of adults may happen within domestic abuse relationships either in isolation or more commonly amongst other abusive actions. Victims should be supported to report instances such as this and to access domestic support agencies.

Signs of Emotional Abuse

Emotional abuse is the persistent emotional maltreatment of a child, vulnerable adult or other adult such as to cause severe adverse effects on their health and emotional development. It may involve conveying to them that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate, or valued only insofar as they meet the needs of another person.

Emotional abuse can be difficult to measure, as there are often no outward physical signs. Indicators of emotional abuse may include interactions that are beyond the individuals developmental or intellectual capability, as well as overprotection and limitation of exploration and learning, or preventing the them from interacting socially with others. It could involve rejecting or ignoring them completely, using degrading language or behaviour towards them, threatening or bullying them and encouraging them to develop behaviours that are self-destructive.

Radicalisation

Emotional abuse also includes the act of radicalising a child, young person or vulnerable adult who may be subsequently drawn into terrorist-related activity. As Youth and Community workers, we must report any incidence where we suspect someone is being drawn into terrorism (known as the Prevent Duty)- speak to your Door 84 Safeguarding Lead or Deputy if you are concerned or unclear about how to proceed with this.

Bullying and Domestic

Bullying and being a victim of or witnessing domestic abuse can produce the same or similar signs and symptoms to that of emotional abuse, more so in children and young people. With young people often either taking on the victim or perpetrators behaviours and acting them out towards others.

Further Definitions

Please see our separate policies with regard to Prevent Duty, Domestic Abuse and Bullying for further guidance on spotting the signs and supporting individuals with these issues.

Other signs and symptoms of abuse or neglect can include:

  • Self-harm
  • Suicidal tendencies
  • Poor mental health
  • Low ability to self-regulate emotion and behaviour

There is no exact science behind spotting abuse:

These definitions and indicators are not meant to be definitive or provide an exhaustive list, but as a guidance. It is important to remember that many children, young people, vulnerable adults and others may exhibit some of these indicators at some time and that the presence of one or more should not be taken solely as proof that abuse is occurring.

There are many kinds of support available to children, young people, vulnerable adults and others who have experienced abuse once it has been disclosed or identified. Further specific support available is detailed at the end of this policy.

Door 84 Youth & Community Centre recognises that:

  • The welfare of children and vulnerable adults is paramount
  • All individuals regardless of age, disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex, or sexual orientation have a right to equal protection from all types of harm or abuse
  • Some children are additionally vulnerable because of the impact of previous experiences, their level of dependency, communication needs or other issues
  • Working in partnership with children, young people, their parents, carers and other agencies is essential in promoting young people’s welfare
  • Some adults have additional vulnerabilities due to disability, mental capacity, mental health or previous trauma and may need extra protection
  • Working in partnership with vulnerable adults, their carers’ and other agencies is essential in promoting the best welfare outcomes
  • All workers have a duty to stay vigilant regarding the wellbeing of all participants and their colleagues
  • All workers have a duty to stay informed and pursue professional development in order to remain informed in current safeguarding issues and practices
  • All workers have a duty to record and share any safeguarding concern at the earliest opportunity with the Designated Safeguarding Lead or Deputy or in their absence a senior worker who will direct this to the duty social work team to be assessed. Contact Details are on display in the Door 84 Office

We will seek to keep children, young people, vulnerable adults and others safe by:

  • Valuing, listening to and respecting them
  • Appointing a nominated senior safeguarding lead, a deputy safeguarding lead and a lead trustee for safeguarding and making all workers aware of who they are and how to contact them
  • Developing child protection and safeguarding policies and procedures which reflect best practice and the most current legislation
  • Using our safeguarding procedures to share concerns and relevant information with agencies who need to know, and involving children, young people, vulnerable adults, parents, families and carers appropriately when safe to do so
  • Creating and maintaining an anti-bullying environment and ensuring that we have a policy and procedure to help us deal effectively with any bullying that does arise
  • Developing and implementing an effective online safety policy and related procedures
  • Sharing information about child protection and safeguarding best practice with children, their families, staff and volunteers via leaflets, posters, group work and one-to-one discussion
  • Recruiting staff, volunteers responsibly, ensuring all necessary checks are made. This includes sight of a satisfactory Disclosure and Baring Service (DBS) check, completion of a minimum of an online Safeguarding Awareness Course and receipt of at least 2 verified references
  • Trustees who are recruited after October 2019, or those prior to this date who will come into direct contact with young people or have input in safeguarding policy will be subject to the same recruitment processes as above. Those recruited prior to this date and/ or not involved in direct work will be subject to DBS checks every 3 years
  • Providing effective management for staff, trustees and volunteers through support, training and quality supervision and reflective practice meeting.
  • Implementing a code of conduct for staff, trustees and volunteers
  • Using our procedures to manage any allegations against staff, trustees and volunteers appropriately
  • Ensuring that we have effective complaints and whistleblowing measures in place
  • Ensuring that we provide a physically safe environment for our children, young people, staff and volunteers, by applying health and safety measures in accordance with the law and regulatory guidance
  • Recording and storing information professionally and securely in line with current legislation.

Supporting a Disclosure

  • Show you care, help them open up: Give your full attention to the child, young person or vulnerable adult and keep your body language open and encouraging. Be compassionate, be understanding and reassure them their feelings are important. Phrases such as ‘you’ve shown such courage today’ can help
  • Use open ended questions which do not make suggestions. Do not be embarrassed to discuss sensitive topics when confronted with them
  • Take your time, slow down: Respect pauses and don’t interrupt – let them go at their own pace. Recognise and respond to their body language. And remember that it may take several conversations for them to share what’s happened to them
  • Show you understand, reflect back: Make it clear you’re interested in what the person is telling you. Reflect and repeat back what they’ve said to check your understanding and use their language to show it’s their experience
  • Be honest! Do not promise you will no more than your knowledge and job role can deliver. Let them know you will not gossip about them. Although you will have to share this with others (state who) to make things better for them and help keep them safe
  • It is very important to ensure they are offered privacy to disclose. Encourage them to go into an area that is private. However, if this is not possible. Alert another staff member to get others away so privacy is maintained
  • Make notes wherever possible for accuracy; It may be appropriate to do this as you go along. However, in some cases it may jeopardise the disclosure being made. In this case write up all information as soon possible after the person has been supported
  • Reassure them! If a someone tells you they are experiencing abuse, it’s important to reassure them that they’ve done the right thing in telling you. Make sure they know that abuse is never their fault
  • Never talk to the alleged perpetrator about a disclosure. This could make things a lot worse for the child or vulnerable adult- even if this is a parent or carer.

Paramount Importance

Then report this!!!! Do not sit on it until the end of a session. Even if you feel it is minor it’s really important to share your concern with a senior member of staff. In short “If in doubt, trust your gut feeling”. If you are in doubt it is better to pass on information that may not be needed than not pass on something that could protect an individual from further harm.

“Safeguarding is only effective when it is effectively communicated”.

Reporting procedure within Door 84 – Youth and Community Centre

Youth support workers and volunteers

In the first instance any concern should be report to the Designated Safeguarding Lead, or senior worker on shift. If the concern is deemed a serious allegation e.g. involves abuse or neglect towards an individual. A referral to The Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) will be made by the Duty Safeguarding Lead. For clarification the most Senior Worker on duty is automatically in the position of Duty Safeguarding Lead. More information regarding the scope of LADO is available below.

Safeguarding concerns are not always dealt with the same as a general misconduct situation. It may be that the worker must take leave or alternative duties whilst issues are fully investigated. The priority is to ensure no further risk of harm or contamination of evidence is allowed and therefore, gaining accurate information from both parties.  These will be dealt with case by case based on the allegation and information which is presented.

If the allegation relates to an act by Designated Safeguarding Lead or Deputy it should be reported to the opposite or to the Designated Safeguarding Trustee.  Where this would create a delay a senior youth worker should take the lead on making the report. Alternatively, staff may proceed to report directly to the relevant agency if they are concern that their report is not been taken seriously.

If workers are unsure whether an allegation meets the threshold for LADO Review they should consult with Children’s Front Door with full details of concern (where it relates to a person under the age of 18 years). They will then be given advice on how to proceed.

Contact Information

Children’s’ Front Door- Office Hours: 01904 551900 Option 3

E D T (Emergency Duty Team) (Out of hours): 01609 780780.

Adult Services – Office Hours: 01904 555111

Adult Services EDT: 01609 780780

LADO York Telephone: 01904 551783 

LADO York Email Referrals:  lado@york.gov.uk 

LADO Referral Form Link: https://www.saferchildrenyork.org.uk/allegations-against-childcare-professionals-and-volunteers.htm

Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) and allegations against childcare professionals and volunteers

IMPORTANT- All allegations and concerns must be reported to the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) within the same working day.

Local Authority Designated Officer

The Local Authority has a designated officers (LADO) to:

  • Provide advice and guidance to employers and voluntary organisations
  • Liaise with the police and other agencies
  • Monitor the progress of cases to ensure that they are dealt with as quickly as possible consistent with a thorough and fair process.

The role of the LADO is to coordinate all allegations and concerns made against a person who works with children within the City of York. As such, all allegations and concerns must be reported to the LADO (see below).

The LADO will maintain a database of all allegations and concerns received and will provide reports to the CYSCP at least annually or on request.

The LADO will advise, in discussion with the the Senior Manager within the Organisation (SMO), on what action should be taken by the employer and whether the matter should be referred to Children’s Social Care and the Police for a decision on whether to convene a  strategy meeting or an initial evaluation meeting.

Contact

NB These contact details are for City of York enquiries and concerns only.  (Please consult your own local authority website for details of your local LADO service.)

If you wish to make an allegation or you have a concern about a professional working with children, young or vulnerable people in the City of York, a referral should be sent to the Local Authority Designated Officer using the LADO Referral Form available on the link provided above, giving as much detail as possible.

Completed LADO Referral Forms must be emailed using secure mail to:  lado@york.gov.uk.  If you do not have secure email, please contact 01904 551783 to make your referral or to seek advice. 

LADO Scope

These procedures should be followed by all organisations that provide services for children or young people or provide staff or volunteers to work with or care for children or young people. These procedures should also be applied to foster carers and prospective adopters.

The scope of these procedures is not just for those cases relating to significant harm and should be applied in all circumstances where an allegation is made or a concern arises that any person who works or has worked with children, in a paid or unpaid capacity, has, towards any child:

  • Behaved in a way that has harmed a child, or may have harmed a child
  • Possibly committed a criminal offence against or related to a child, or
  • Behaved towards a child or children in a way that indicates he or she may pose a risk of harm to children

Allegations may arise in many ways from a number of sources e.g. a concern, suspicion, complaint or report from a child, parent or other adult within or outside of the organisation; information arising from a disciplinary, criminal or Section 47 child protection investigation.

Concern about a Child

If you have a safeguarding concern for a child who attends Door 84 or any other child you may know of or have contact with, this should be referred in the usual way to Children’s Social Care: Tel: 01904 551900

If a child is in immediate danger, always dial 999

If you urgently need to speak to a social worker outside office hours, before 8.30am or after 5.00pm, at weekends and on public holidays, please contact the Emergency Duty Team:

Tel: 01609 780780

Email: edt@northyorks.gov.uk

Senior worker / Manager procedure:

Follow the flow charts as per this policy and the LADO guidance above:

You will need the following information:

Collate all information regarding the disclosure. Including the name of the worker who took the disclosure.

Childs or vulnerable adults full name, date of birth and address, person or organisation with parental or care responsibilities details if possible.

Details of the perpetrator if known.

A referral form must be sent preferably the same day. Max delay 24 Hours.

Referral Web Links:

For Children (under 18 years) these are obtainable from:  

https://www.saferchildrenyork.org.uk/forms.htm

For vulnerable Adults, these are obtainable from: 

https://www.york.gov.uk/ReportAdultAbuseInYork

Flow Charts for reporting Child and vulnerable adult safeguarding & mental health crisis procedures can be found on the next page within this policy.

Children and Young People’s Safeguarding Reporting Procedures in Brief:

This procedure must be followed whenever an allegation of abuse is made or when there is a suspicion that a child or young person has been abused. Promises of confidentiality must not be given as this may conflict with the need to ensure the safety and welfare of the individual.

 

Vulnerable Adult’s Safeguarding Reporting Procedures in Brief:

This procedure must be followed whenever an allegation of abuse is made or when there is a suspicion that a vulnerable adult has been abused. Promises of confidentiality must not be given as this may conflict with the need to ensure the safety and welfare of the individual.

 

Mental Health Crisis Reporting Procedures in Brief:

This procedure must be followed whenever a worker is concerned that a person is a risk to themselves or others due to a mental health crisis. Promises of confidentiality must not be given as this may conflict with the need to ensure the safety and welfare of the individual.

 

 

Legal Framework

This policy has been drawn up on the basis of legislation, policy and guidance that seeks to protect people in England. For the purpose of this policy children are people aged up to 18 years.

A vulnerable adult is a person who is aged over 18 years and who is or may be for any reason unable to take care of him or herself, or unable to protect him or herself against significant harm or exploitation.

The core principles of this policy are taken from the following:

  •  Working Together to Safeguard Children (2018)
  •  The Children’s’ Act. (1989) & (2004)
  •  The Children and Families Act (2014)
  •  The Equality Act (2010)
  •  The Counter Terrorism and Security Act (2015); Prevent Duty (2019).
  •  The Mental Capacity Act (2005)
  •  Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act (2006)

References;

  • Working Together to Safeguard Children (2018) Available at: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/779401/Working_Together_to_Safeguard-Children.pdf
  • The Children’s’ Act. (1989) Available at: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1989/41/data.pdf
  • The Children’s Act (2004) Available at: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2004/31/pdfs/ukpga_20040031_en.pdf
  • The Equality Act (2010) Available at: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2010/15/pdfs/ukpga_20100015_en.pdf
  • Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups (2006) Available at: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2006/47/contents
  • The Counter Terrorism and Security Act (2015). Available at: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/439598/prevent-duty-departmental-advice-v6.pdf
  • The Mental Capacity Act (2005) Available at: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2005/9/pdfs/ukpga_20050009_en.pdf
  • Thresholds Guide Referrals into CYC’s Front Door, including Children’s Social Care: Available at: https://www.yor-ok.org.uk/downloads/CONTROLLED%20DOCUMENTS/Practitioner%20Guide%20to%20Referral%20Thresholds.pdf

Related policies and procedures

This policy statement should be read alongside our organisational policies and procedures, including:

  • Professional responsibilities and duties.
  • Dealing with allegations against staff and volunteers
  • Role of the designated safeguarding Lead
  • Managing allegations against staff and volunteers
  • Recruitment policy and procedures
  • Adult to child supervision ratios
  • Lone working policy
  • Code of conduct for staff, trustees and volunteers
  • Staff and volunteer contact with participants outside of working roles policy
  • Staff and volunteer induction policy
  • Anti-bullying policy and procedures
  • Behaviour policy
  • Sexual health policy
  • Prevent duty
  • Substance misuse policy
  • Online safety policy and procedures for responding to concerns about online abuse
  • Social media policy- Including: Photography and image sharing guidance
  • Confidentiality -Child protection records retention and storage policy- GDPR
  • Whistleblowing policy

More information about what these policies and procedures include is available from our website: www.door84.co.uk.

For Further Support Agencies Telephone Contact Details:

  • Children’s Front Door: 01904 55190
  • Emergency Duty Team (Children & Adults): 01609 780780
  • York Local Area Designated Officer: 01904 551783
  • Crisis Home Resolution Team Tel: 01904 615348 (young people:10am – 10pm)
  • Lime Trees (Mental Health) 01904 615300 (office hours)
  • NHS (non-emergency) 111
  • Police Non-emergency 101
  • Police emergency 999
  • York Adult Crisis Team (after 10pm for ages 16+) 01904 526582
  • 30 Clarence Street, Young Peoples Service: Text: 07624 802244.
  • Tel: 01904 555400
  • IDAS Domestic Violence 0300 011 0110
  • IDAS Sexual Abuse: 03000 110 110
  • Changing Lives (Substance Misuse): 01904 621776
  • Hand in Hand Project (Child Exploitation) 0113 387 6410/ 07715 122569 Email:  handinhand@childrenssociety.org.uk
  • PACE (Parents against child exploitation) 0113 240 5226 or 0113 240 3040 (Main Office)
  • Survive 01904 638813
  • York Mind 01904 643364

Useful Web Sites:

www.childline.org.uk

www.childrenssociety.org.uk

www.compass-uk.org

www.mentalhealth.org.uk

www.nshn.co.uk

www.nspcc.org.uk

www.papyrus.org.uk

www.parentline.org.uk

www.youngminds.org.uk

www.yor-ok.org.uk

 

Contact details

Designated Safeguarding Lead

Name: Julie Arrowsmith

Phone/email: 01904 623177 / Julie.door84@hotmail.com

Deputy Safeguarding Lead

Name: Heidi Haywood

Phone/email: 01904 623177 / heidi.haywood@door84.org.uk

 Deputy Safeguarding Lead

Name: Chris Bloomfield

Phone/email: 01904 623177 / Chris.door84@hotmail.com

 Lead Trustee for Safeguarding

Name: Sheelegh Salter – contact details to be confirmed.

 

We are committed to reviewing our policy and good practice annually and will amend more frequently should legislation or reflective practice highlight the need for amendments.

Staff and Trustee Lead Signatures;

 

Staff Lead;

Name: __________________________________

 

Position: __________________________________

 

Date: __________________________________

 

Trustee Lead;

 

Name: __________________________________

 

Position: __________________________________

 

Date: __________________________________