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Child Protection and Safeguarding Vulnerable Adults 


The United Pentecostal Church of Great Britain and Ireland believes in a ‘No Tolerance’ approach to any form of abuse and promotes a culture that supports the protection of all vulnerable people including children, young people and vulnerable adults. The church has put safeguarding policies and procedures in place to prevent safeguarding issues from happening in the first place, responding to any concerns, and ensuring that the Church is a safe and trusted environment for everyone. 

We all have an individual and shared/collective responsible for safeguarding. This requires us to be vigilant and work together to ensure the safeguarding of vulnerable people is seen as a priority within our local church community and across the organisation. In carrying out our safeguarding duties, it is also important that we don’t become too risk averse that children and young people are prevented from taking up opportunities to strive and reach their full potential. 

Although safeguarding is everybody’s responsibility, the Church Trustees, as part of their duties, are ultimately accountable for safeguarding and is expected to take reasonable steps to protect people who come into our churches from harm. This includes checking that safeguarding and child protection procedures are being followed and improved. It is important to note that the Charity Commission will hold trustees to account if things go wrong and will check that trustees followed guidance and the law. 


  • Members who expressed an interest in taking on a leadership role in the Church are required to demonstrate an understanding and commitment to safeguarding. 

  • Members who are already in leadership position should take steps to improve their knowledge and keep up to date with any changes relating to safeguarding. 

  • Safeguarding Policy should be reviewed and amended, if necessary, at least annually. 



Updated safeguarding guidance The Department for Education published its updated safeguarding guidance for after-school clubs, community activities, and tuition providers which includes Christian Sunday Schools. Although the updated guidance is not exclusively aimed at churches but, it covers all community related activities. 

The guidance includes advice for parents who use community related activities, to help them be clear on what safeguarding arrangements they should expect settings 

to have in place. 

Safeguarding Sunday The next Safeguarding Sunday is on 17th November 2024. Safeguarding Sunday is a safeguarding awareness raising campaign for churches run by the charity Thirtyone:eight. 

There is a resource pack which can be accessed via this weblink: 

Safeguarding Sunday 2023 Resource Pack 

Duty to confirm all serious incidents have been reported before submitting an annual return 

Every financial year, registered charities must submit an annual return to the Charity Commission. Before submitting their annual return, charities with an income of £25,000 or more are required to declare that there were no serious incidents during the previous financial year that should have been reported to the Commission but were not. If incidents did occur, but weren’t reported at the time, you should submit these before you file your charity’s annual return, so you can make the declaration. This should also be done by charities with incomes under the £25,000 threshold. 

Making changes to governing documents The governing document is usually the constitution or rules. The new statutory power that trusts and unincorporated associations can use to make changes to their governing document is now in force. For example, the charity’s purposes or rules on holding meetings.If using this power, these charities will need to get the Commission’s authority to make certain ‘regulated alterations’ in the same way as charitable companies and Charitable Incorporated Organisations (CIO). 

If you require further information, you can contact the Charity Commission via Charity Commission Contact forms. 

Or ring 0300 066 9197 Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, except for Wednesday between 12:00pm and 1pm. 

Progress Policies - 40% of Churches have Safeguarding Policies? 

Breakdown by Districts – Within the Central District, all our churches have now submitted their Safeguarding policy with the exception of the Peterborough Church. L&S and Northern are work in progress Training and Awareness – safeguarding training, awareness raising, and advice given to Churches 

DBS - Regular DBS checks are undertaken by the administrator to ensure they are up to date and will give advance notice to those whose DBS is due to expire. This is communicated via Whatsapp and email. 

The Safeguarding monitoring structure is as follows: 

Senior Leader: Bishop L. Francis 

Current Lead Recruiter: Rev. S. Ramruttun 

Additional Recruiter – ID checker: Sis. D. Ramruttun 

Safeguarding Adviser: Sis. Denise Bushay 

The General Secretary office is responsible for Safeguarding monitoring. The safeguarding administrator has undergone training from the umbrella organisation, Thirty-one eight and would like to offer support for any future applicants who wish to apply for a DBS certificate. 

Key Principles


  • The safety and welfare of vulnerable people – children, young people, and vulnerable adults is everyone’s responsibility 

  • The safety and well-being of the child must take priority over concerns about adults against whom an allegation may be made 

  • The best interests of the child should be paramount 

  • A proper balance must be struck between protecting children and respecting the rights and needs of parents/guardians and families. 

  • While it is not possible to remove all risk, your Church should put in place policies and procedures to manage and minimise risks. 

  • Carry out a risk assessment to identify whether a child, young person or vulnerable person could be harmed while attending your services. It should be noted that risk in this context is the risk of abuse/harm and not general health and safety risk 

  • Include the procedures which are in place to manage the risks in your safeguarding policy. 

  • Appoint a Safeguarding Officer to be the first point of contact to deal with safeguarding concerns or allegations. 

  • Safer Recruitment - carry out the required safeguarding checks on everyone who works with or helps with activities for children and young people and vulnerable adults. 

  • Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks should be done every three years. 



Advice and Guidance on DBS / Safeguarding 

  1. DBS Processed within the UPC GBI When an applicant wishes to have their DBS processed via the organisation, only the Lead Recruiter can view the content of the applicant’s DBS. 
  2. The I.D Checker will ensure the relevant ID is provided as a part of the application and is within the correct format. 

  3. DBS Processed outside the organisation The UPC GBI will accept a DBS certificate from outside the organisationas long as it’s registered with the updated services 

  4. It is the individual’s responsibility to register with the updated services within 30 days from the issue date of their DBS. 

  5. A current DBS 



It is valid up to 3 years from the issue date. 

3 years is recommended by the Charity Commission and by ThirtyOneEight who is our safeguarding advisory service, as a reasonable date stamp for a DBS renewal 

If a certificate is not renewed after three years validity, the individual isn’t covered by the organisation's insurance policy. 

The current cost is £45 



  1. Cost for application/Admin 


Safeguarding Policy 

Most, if not all Churches should have a Safeguarding Policy. However, work continues to raise awareness and improve policy and practice. Good safeguarding practice consists of: paper (policy and procedures); people and practice. 

Your Church Safeguarding Policy should set out the Church’s commitment to keeping everyone safe, especially vulnerable people. The Policy should contain information about how you will: 

  • Deal with any safeguarding concern and allegation. 

  • Report safeguarding concern and allegation, including reporting to the local safeguarding children or adult team. 

  • Recruit safely those working or interacting with children, young people and vulnerable adults within the church. 


Key Points to note 

  • Every church should have a Safeguarding Officer to deal with concerns and allegations. 

  • Safe recruitment practices should be followed, whether your staff and volunteers are working with children online or face-to-face. 

  • Your policy should be accessible by everyone, whether online or on paper. 


As part of fulfilling your safeguarding duties, whether working online or in person, you must take reasonable steps to protect from harm people who come into contact with your church. 

The principles of safeguarding remain the same but you need to review and update your policies and procedures annually. If there are changes in between times, you will need to make sure that your policy is updated in accordance with any legislative changes. 

If you require expert assistance, you can contact Thirtyone:eight – independent Christian charity – who can review and update your safeguarding policy to ensure it is fit for purpose and in line with latest legislation, guidance and best practice. 

They charge a standard fee of £85 plus VAT to review safeguarding policy. Their website can be accessed at: 

Reasonable grounds for concerns You should always inform the Safeguarding Officer if you have reasonable grounds for concern that a child, young person or vulnerable adult may have been, is being, or is at risk of being abused or neglected. You are not required to judge the truth of 

the claims or the credibility of the child or adult. 

It is not necessary for you to prove that abuse has occurred to report a concern to Safeguarding, who will inform the Local Authority. All that is required is that you have reasonable grounds for concern. It is the Local Authority’s role to assess concerns that are reported and to clarify matters and then decide on what course of action (if any) is required in order to protect the child or adult from abuse and neglect. 

Reasonable grounds for a child protection or welfare concern include: 

  • An injury or behaviour, that is consistent with abuse and is unlikely to have been caused in any other way 

  • Consistent signs that a child is suffering from emotional or physical neglect 

  • A child saying or indicating by other means that he or she has been abused 

  • An account from a person who saw the child being abused. 


Dealing with a retrospective allegation 

Some adults may disclose that they were abused as a child. If you receive such a disclosure, you should report this information to the Local Authority, as the alleged abuser may pose a current risk to children. 

Reporting abuse and finding support 

If someone is in immediate danger or needs urgent medical attention, call 999. If the situation you are reporting is not an emergency, please contact your: 

  • Safeguarding Advisers - If you are worried about someone and want to raise a concern or report abuse. 

  • Local Authority children or adult social care team – for children and young people at risk of abuse and neglect. 


Support for victims and survivors 

There are a number of organisations and services which specialise in offering support to survivors of abuse: 

  • NSPCC Helpline on 0808 800 5000 for free support and advice if you are worried about a child or young person. 

  • Childline is a free, private and confidential service designed to help anyone under the age of 19 with any issue they're going through. 

  • Age UK - you can contact Age UK for help, information and advice for older people, on 0800 678 1602, 8am-7pm, 365 days a year. 

  • Samaritans are available 24 hours a day for anyone who’s struggling to cope, who needs someone to listen without judgement or pressure. Call 116 123 for free.

  • National Association for People Abused in Childhood - NAPAC – Supporting Recovery From Childhood Abuse . Call their free, confidential support line on 0808 801 0331. 


Mental Health and Wellbeing 

There’s a strong link between safeguarding and mental and physical wellbeing. If someone’s wellbeing is suffering, they may consider certain actions that put them at risk. If a person is experiencing a form of abuse that is not noticed and tackled, they may come to serious harm. 

Mental health is a state of mental well-being that enables people to cope with the stresses of life, realise their abilities, learn well and work well, and contribute to their community. Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make healthy choices. 

Mental ill health is a prevalent issue, and even more now after the Covid pandemic, affecting children as well as adults. 

Well-being is the experience of health, and happiness. It includes having good mental health, a sense of meaning or purpose, and the ability to manage stress. 

Negative experiences such as abuse and neglect can adversely impact a child's mental health. Mental health issues can also sometimes lead to safeguarding and child protection issues, for example, if a child's mental health begins to put them or other people at risk of harm. 

It is therefore necessary that anyone who works or volunteers with vulnerable people is able to recognise the signs that a child or adult may be struggling with their mental health. And they know how to take appropriate action to support the child or adult in getting the help they need. 

NHS urgent mental health helplines These help lines are available in most areas of England. They are available 24 hours a day. Most of them are available 7 days a week. You can call them for advice and support for yourself or your relative. They can help you to speak to a mental health professional. To find your local helpline go to: 

Government departments that oversee safeguarding policy and law 

There are a number of different government bodies and regulators that have a role in safeguarding. 


The Department for Education is responsible for government policy and legislation on child safeguarding and protection. 

The Department of Health and Social Care is responsible for government policy and legislation on safeguarding adults at risk. 


The Welsh Government is responsible for policy and law on safeguarding children and adults at risk in Wales. 

Safeguarding Ireland 

Safeguarding Ireland was established to promote the safeguarding of adults who may be vulnerable, protect them from all forms of abuse by persons, organisations and institutions and develop a national plan for promoting their welfare 

The Department of Children and Youth Affairs (DCYA) brought together a number of key areas of policy and services for children, young people and families. The Child and Family Agency is now the dedicated State agency responsible for improving wellbeing and outcomes for children. 


There are a number of regulators that you may need to engage with or report to. 

Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) The Disclosure and Barring Service provides information on criminal records and barring decisions. It helps employers make safer recruitment decisions and prevent unsuitable people from working with adults at risk and children. Its website provides information on how and when to check a person’s criminal record. This also provides information on where a charity has a statutory duty to refer an individual to the DBS. 

DBS checks help the Church make safer recruitment decisions and prevent unsuitable people from having contact with children and adults at risk. 

Local authority social services Local Authority Social Services have a statutory duty to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and adults at risk. Local Authorities have a designated officer responsible for the management of allegations against people who work with children. 

Local Safeguarding Children / Adult boards 

Local Safeguarding Children/Adults Boards are multi-agency bodies set up in every local authority. They lead and co-ordinate the effectiveness of the safeguarding work of their members and partner agencies to protect children and adults at risk. In England these are set up under the Children Act 2004 and the Care Act 2014; and in Wales under the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014. 

The Care Inspectorate Wales The Care Inspectorate Wales regulates and inspects social care and childcare in Wales. 


The Police investigate allegations of criminal abuse against children and adults. Under the Children Act 1989, the police, working with other agencies (such as the Local Authority children’s social care services, health and education services), are responsible for making enquiries to safeguard the welfare of any child within their area who is suffering (or likely to suffer) significant harm. 

Denise Bushay – Safeguarding Officer. 

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