Child Protection Policy
Self Protection Guidelines
Pre-School age children (up to 5 years old)
Make a written record of any injury to a child and ensure that it is countersigned by the parent/carer and another leader if possible
Keep a written record of any false accusations a child makes against you or other leaders/helpers. This should include everything from: “”you’re always picking on me”, to “you hit me”, or comments such as don’t touch me” If it is too difficult to keep a record of every incident, keep a weekly summary. Get another adult to witness the allegation, if possible, and record that meeting.
Record in your log any incident in which the child touches you or talks to you in a sexually inappropriate way or place, and notify another adult Explain to the child that the behaviour is unacceptable As it could be a totally innocent touch, do not make the child feel like a criminal However, remember that
ignoring this or allowing it to go on may place you in an untenable situation Neither is it a good idea for the child to go on doing this, as the next person might take advantage and say subsequently that the child instigated it
Give any records as noted above to the elected EMVHMC Child Protection Representative, Kate Smith (telephone 01730 823192)
Do not place yourself in a situation where you are spending excessive amounts of time alone with any one child away from other people Always ensure that you are clearly visible by other leaders/helpers or responsible adults Tell another responsible adult if you are going to see a child on your own.
Never do anything of a personal nature for children that they can do themselves This includes cleaning bottoms, unbuttoning trouser buttons, or any activity that can be misconstrued
Be mindful of how and where you touch children. Never pat a child on the bottom When working with young children who sit on your lap, get a “lap cushion” on which they sit
Avoid hugs and kisses on the mouth from children.
Take care if it becomes necessary to physically restrain a child for any reason as the action could be misinterpreted as assault
Children and Young People above pre-school age up to 16 years Make a written record of any injury to a child and ensure that it is countersigned by the parent/carer and another leader if possible.
Report any suspicion that a child is the victim of/or at risk of physical, emotional or sexual abuse or neglect in the first instance to the EMVHMC Child Protection Representative Kate Smith (telephone 01730 823192) who will contact either the police or Social Services if appropriate.
Do not enter into any inappropriate relationships with young people.
Do not enter into agreements with young people to keep disclosed information secret. Always inform the young person that they should, or you will, inform the appropriate group leader (or responsible adult).
If leaders/volunteers feel uncomfortable about approaches being made to them by young people, they should discreetly make the young person aware of their discomfort and inform Kate Smith.
When supervising young people on a one-to-one basis, do this in a public area, or, where this is not possible, leave the door to the room open.
If a situation arises where a young person has no way of getting home, it is not advisable to take them home on your own. However, if this is unavoidable, then inform another responsible adult of the time you leave and your destination and also contact them when the young person is dropped off.
CHILD PROTECTION POLICY FOR EAST MEON VILLAGE HALL
The East Meon Village Hall Management Committee (EMVHMC) recognises the right of every child and young person (up to the age of 16), without exception, to have at all times and in all situations while using the Hall the right to protection from abuse, whether physical, verbal, sexual, bullying, exclusion or neglect Bullying, shouting, physical violence, sexism and racism towards children will not be permitted or tolerated
East Meon Village Hall is used by children for a number of activities some of which are organised within regular groups (referred to below as Regular Groups) (e .g. Beavers, Scouts, Toddler Group, School, Youth Club) and some of which are either occasional or informal (Non-regular Activities) (e .g. children’s parties)
To provide, as far as possible and appropriate, an environment where children and young people feel safe, secure, are listened to, valued and respected
To guide elected committee members, volunteers and employees of the East Meon Village Hall, should any child protection issue arise during their work
To minimise the risk of leaders and volunteers being falsely accused of inappropriate conduct.
THIS POLICY APPLIES TO
Users of the East Meon Village hail and specifically all leaders of Regular Groups and all ‘Responsible Adults’ as identified under ‘Non-regular Activities’ below.
- East Meon Village Hall is unmanned most of the time and used by hirers without village hall staff or volunteers in attendance The onus of responsibility is therefore on the hirers or visitors to the hail to be aware of their own safety and the safety of vulnerable people
- EMVHMC adopts the East Hampshire Child Protection Code of Practice (copy attached).
- Kate Smith (Telephone 01730 823192) is the designated Child Protection Representative for EMVHMC In any instance where Kate Smith is not available, the Chairperson of the EMVHMC will take on this responsibility.
- It is the responsibility of all elected members of EMVHMC to inform the Police (telephone 0845 045 4545) or Social Services (telephone 023 9247 1644) of all reported instances of suspected child abuse and to seek their further advice on any related issues as appropriate
- It is the general policy of EMVHMC to provide a safe and suitable environment to support and encourage a wide variety of beneficial activities involving children and young people. In doing this, it recognises the need to:
- a. Safeguard the welfare of children/young people using the Hall by ensuring that they are protected from physical, sexual and emotional harm,
- b. Minimise the risk of leaders and volunteers being falsely accused of inappropriate conduct.
- EMVHMC will endeavour to keep the premises safe for use by children and young people.
- AO suspicions or allegations of abuse against a child will be taken seriously and dealt with speedily and appropriately.
- Any suspicions or concerns should be reported to the EMVHMC Child Protection Representative, Kate Smith (Telephone: 01730 823192 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org).
- EMVHMC will ensure that hirers are made aware of their obligations under the Licensing Act 2003 to ensure that alcohol is not sold to those under the age of 18.
- EMVHMC will ensure that hirers are aware that no children may be admitted to films when they are below the age classification for the film on show.
- No gambling or entertainment of an adult or sexual nature shall be permitted on the premises when children are present.
- These policies and procedures will be reviewed annually and updated as appropriate in the interim periods.
- Group Leaders and helpers who run Regular Groups involving children, where the parents of the children involved are not present, will be required to hold a valid “Criminal Records Bureau” (CRB) certificate to demonstrate that they have been checked by the police as suitable for the role.
- These Group Leaders and helpers will be expected to abide by the specific policy/code of conduct of their regulatory body in addition to the general policy of East Meon Village Hall.
- Whenever a Group Leader or helper does not hold such a certificate it is a mandatory requirement of the EMVHMC that he/she is accompanied at all times when in contact with children either by a certificate holder or at least one of the parents of the children attending.
- All Group Leaders will be expected to be familiar with Department of Health document 31815 “What to do if you are worried that a child is being abused” ,gov,
- The relevant CRB certificate numbers or formal confirmation of the existence of the necessary certificates will be held on file by the Secretary.
- For Non-Regular Activities involving children, the responsible adult attending will always be identified by name on the Booking Form and asked to advise if either he/she holds a CRB certificate or is related to any of the children attending. If either of these conditions are not satisfied, then the responsible adult will be required to have at least one parent of the children involved attending the activities at all times.
- The responsible adult will be made aware on the Booking Form of the existence of the East Meon Village Hall Child Protection Statement’s Policy and Procedures and the availability of the Self Protection Guidelines forming part of them.