3. Safer Recruitment and People Management
What is ‘Safer Recruitment and People Management’ (SR&PM)?
The Church of England’s safeguarding policy statement ‘Promoting a Safer Church’ outlines the Church’s commitment to promoting a safe environment and culture across all Church bodies for children and vulnerable adults. An essential part of this commitment is ensuring that all those who work or volunteer with vulnerable groups are suitable for the role they will carry out.
One way in which the Church aims to fulfil the above commitment is by following ‘safer recruitment’ processes and ensuring continued vigilance once someone is in role.
Obtaining a Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) Certificate is only one element of ‘safer recruitment’ processes. The reality is that many people who have abused or will abuse in positions of trust do not have a criminal record. Therefore, the wider process of ‘safer recruitment’ is an essential part of the Church of England’s approach to safeguarding.
A short video, which features people on the ground talking in their own words about their experiences with SRPM, why it’s important to them and how they have gone about it, together with a survivor’s perspective is now available on the Church of England website.
The following are model role descriptions you may find useful as you seek to implement SR&PM in your recruitment processes and volunteer management.
- Church cleaner
- Flower Arranger
- Leader in Charge
- Thursday Club Leader & Deputy
- Toddler Group Leader /Helper
- Young Saints Worship Leader
Volunteer Agreement – It is strongly recommended that all your volunteers are given and sign a volunteer agreement. This may vary from parish to parish but you can find an example here and also on the NCVO website.
Please see our safeguarding briefing papers and frequently asked questions document about this new guidance which outlines the main points we need everyone to be aware. However, please also read the full guidance alongside it as it contains many additional elements.
‘Safer Recruitment’ Training:
To assist in the implementation of SR&PM, an online ‘Safer Recruitment’ e-learning module has been developed. All those listed below are required to complete the module. It can also be completed by anyone else for whom it is deemed relevant. It is a simple and relatively short course that produces a certificate of completion that can be saved in an individual’s personal file as evidence of competency when involved in recruitment.
- A Line Manager
- Involved in the recruitment of Church Officers (employees, elected members, and volunteers)
- A Parish Safeguarding Representative or Safeguarding Officer in your church body
- Responsible for administering DBS checks
- An Ordinand during IME1
The module is available on the National Safeguarding Training portal. If you are a new user of the portal you will need to follow the on-screen instructions to register and create an account. Once you have logged in, click on the tab that says ‘Online Courses’, then select the ‘Safer Recruitment’ module. Once completed, please save and/or print a copy of your training certificate for your records and notify your Parish Safeguarding Officer so they can keep a record of your training achievements.
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