This policy sets out the councils approach to safeguarding children and vulnerable adults.
The policy was last updated in February 2014.
Child: any person under the age of 18.
Vulnerable Adult: Adults, where vulnerable activities as defined by legislation take place.
1.1 Knutsford Town Council is committed to taking all reasonable precautions to safeguard the welfare of children and vulnerable persons that use its services and promotes a safeguarding culture and environment.
1.2 The welfare of children and vulnerable adults is paramount
1.3 All children and vulnerable adults have the right to protection from abuse
1.4 All suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately
1.5 All staff, volunteers and elected members of the Council have a responsibility to report concerns to the appropriate professional
1.6 All staff, volunteers and elected members are not to deal with situations of abuse or to decide if abuse has occurred
1.7 The Town Clerk is the responsible officer for implementing this policy and named person for Child Protection & Safeguarding within Knutsford Town Council.
2.1 All members, volunteers and staff of Knutsford Town Council must:
- Understand and apply this policy and procedures in their activities
- Identify opportunities and undertake appropriate training to support them in their role
- Act appropriately at all times and be able to challenge inappropriate behaviour in others
- Be able to recognise harm and know how to report concerns in a timely and appropriate way
2.2 Members and Managers of Knutsford Town Council must:
- Encourage all staff and volunteers to understand this policy
- Offer opportunities to undertake appropriate safeguarding training and refresher training
- Ensure the policy and procedure is adhered to and to undertake regular compliance audits
- Ensure that the Council’s whistle-blowing policy is communicated to all staff and volunteers.
2.3 The role and responsibilities of the named person(s) are:
- To ensure that all staff are made aware of what they should do and who they should go to if they are concerned that a child/young person/vulnerable adult may be subject to abuse or neglect
- Ensure that any concerns about a child or vulnerable adult are acted on, clearly recorded, referred on where necessary and, followed up to ensure the issues are addressed.
- The named person(s) will record any reported incidents in relation to a child/young person/vulnerable adult or breach of Safeguarding policies and procedures. This will be kept in a secure place and its contents will be confidential.
3.1 The Council will maintain an operating procedure, which shall be annexed to this Policy
3.2 The Town Clerk will always refer allegations or suspicions to Cheshire East Social Services for investigation.
3.3 The operating procedures shall include sections on: definition of abuse, what staff should do if they have concerns / a child/vulnerable adult says or indicates they are being abused, emergency action, allegations of abuse against staff and safer working procedures
4.1 Councillors, volunteers and other members of staff will not be subject to DBS checks unless there is a change in their council duties which requires regular contact with children or vulnerable people.
4.2 All volunteers should submit two references (including phone numbers) by reputable individuals (not family members) which the Town Clerk will check.
4.3 If the Council becomes aware or is informed of information from a reputable source (e.g. Police, NSPCC, Social Services etc.) that an individual is not suitable to be involved with a Council project, it has the right to stop the individual from having any further involvement in any Council projects or services. A copy of this policy will be available for inspection at all relevant Council premises.