(Policy on the Protection of Children and Vulnerable Adults)
1.1 Trac Cymru is committed to safeguarding the welfare of children and vulnerable adults by seeking to protect them from physical, sexual and emotional harm.
1.2 Trac Cymru intends to implement this policy by making all staff and volunteers aware of it.
2. Managing Risk
2.1 The following steps will be taken by the organisation to minimise the risk to children and vulnerable adults:
2.1.1 identify the situations where there is a significant risk. Any project which involves substantial contact with children and vulnerable adults should:-
2.1.2 plan the working environment so as to minimise any risks to clients; this includes people, working space and routes to and from the place of work.
2.1.3 keep to a minimum one to one unsupervised contact, including car journeys
2.1.4 avoid staff and volunteers visiting clients’ homes or inviting them to their own homes unless others are present
Trac Cymru will provide appropriate training for staff and volunteers on Safeguarding/ working with children and vulnerable adults.
3. Staff and Volunteers
As part of the recruitment process applicants should be asked:-
3.1.1 to disclose any criminal conviction
3.1.2 to provide evidence of their identity
3.1.3 give details of any past work with children & vulnerable adults
3.1.4 to give the names of referees who can comment on any previous work with children or vulnerable adults
3.1.5 Where the applicant has not previously worked with children or vulnerable adults they should be asked for a character reference who can comment on their suitability.
3.1.6 DBS checks will be carried out as part of project preparation.
3.2. Probationary period
All staff and volunteers should have a probationary period where they should be supervised. The supervisor should make an effort to observe them at work during this period. Should their initial probationary period not involve them in work with children or vulnerable adults during this period, then at their first occasion of working with such groups they should be supervised. Comments on their work should be entered on the personnel file by their supervisor.
It should be made clear to all members of staff and volunteers that it is their duty to bring to the notice of the organisation any suspicious behaviour and report promptly any allegations.
4. Responding to concerns around protection issues
4.1 Any concern should be shared with the designated project leader and/or to the chair of trac. The chair should as soon as possible be informed that an investigation has begun, and who is carrying out that investigation.
4.2 There are very few life and death emergencies in child protection. Time should always be taken to reflect on the information, think through possibilities and plan a course of action. There should be an awareness of the impact on staff, volunteers and families and the need for support during any process of investigation.
4.3 Information should be collected with regard to:
4.3.1 The nature of the concern
4.3.2 Where the information came from
4.3.3 What other information is known about the individual and their family
4.3.4 The member of staff or volunteer’s view
All information collected should be treated as confidential and be discussed only with the project leader and those trustees involved in the investigation.
4.4 Whoever is carrying out the investigation should:
4.4.1 give a written report to the board of trustees
4.4.2 recommend what action should be taken
4.4.3 inform other authorities such as the police or social services in a timely manner if appropriate
4.5 After any concern has been investigated the board will review the effectiveness of its procedures. Such a review should in any case take place annually. The human resources sub committee, together with the chair, should take responsibility for instigating this review.
4.6.1 If someone is seriously injured a member of staff or volunteer should ensure medical attention is given as soon as possible
4.6.2 In cases of actual assault or if someone is threatening harm, staff or volunteers should ring the police immediately.
Reviewed and agreed by Trac Cymru’s Board of Trustees on 20 September 2022.