Safeguarding Statement to Parish 2021
The Bishops’ Conference has stated that ‘the Catholic Church in Scotland is concerned with the lives, safety, wholeness and well being of each individual person within God’s purpose for everyone. It seeks to safeguard the welfare of children, young people and vulnerable adults who are involved in whatever capacity with the Church and its organisations. As a Church community, we accept that it is the responsibility of all of us, ordained, professed, paid and voluntary members to work together to prevent the physical, sexual, emotional abuse or neglect of children, young people and vulnerable adults’.
Pope Francis has asked that our families are made aware that they have every right to expect that they are safe and secure in ‘Our Father’s House’.
As part of our commitment to Safeguarding, it is vitally important that we remember those who have been harmed or abused either by a member of the Church, members of their family or any other person. It is asked of us that we pray and care about them. In 2019, the Bishops of Scotland established an annual Day of Prayer for those who have suffered abuse and individuals and communities who are affected by abuse. This Day of Prayer is to be marked each year on the Friday following Ash Wednesday. This year the Day of Prayer falls on the 19th of February. This day allows the Church to renew its apology to anyone who has suffered and to stress its commitment to the essential work of safeguarding across our parish communities. A copy of a possible service to be used at home will be located on the Parish Website.
The Archdiocese of Glasgow is fully committed to Safeguarding as an integral part of life in the Church. Both the Archdiocese and our parish embrace the special responsibility we have for all children, young people and vulnerable adults who are part of our faith community. In our Church and Hall there is a poster/information which highlights our Safeguarding manual and has contact details for the parish, the parish coordinator(s) and the Diocesan Safeguarding Team. Please make contact with them or the Parish Priest if you have any concerns regarding the abuse or harm of any child, young person or vulnerable adult.
Safeguarding in our parish is with us in all aspects of our living faith. Each year, as Parish Priest, Parish Safeguarding Coordinators and volunteers, we commit ourselves to these principles and to renewing and improving our practice. We adhere to the protocols and procedures laid out by the Bishops’ Conference of Scotland in the document In God’s Image. These procedures, and the vigilance of those involved in the life of the parish, helps us to ensure that everyone should feel safe when they come to Mass, services, groups or social events.
All of us involved in Safeguarding within the Archdiocese are grateful for all the hard work done by all our Parish Priests, Parish Safeguarding Co-ordinators and our parish volunteers.
Safeguarding: “It’s everyone job to make sure I’m alright”
Our Commitment to Safeguarding by the Bishops’ Conference of Scotland:
“All Components of the Catholic Church in Scotland, especially those in positions of leadership and responsibility, value the lives, wholeness, safety and well-being of each individual person within God’s purpose for everyone. We seek to uphold the highest safeguarding standards in our relationships with people of all ages who are involved in whatever capacity with the Church and its organisations. And therefore, as a Church community, we accept that it is the responsibility of all of us – ordained, professed, employed and voluntary – to work together to protect children and vulnerable adults from abuse or harm.”
In God’s Image’ has been published by the Bishops’ Conference of Scotland as an “Instruction on Safeguarding for implementation in all Catholic canonical jurisdictions in Scotland and by all other groups and organisations in Scotland subject to a legitimate canonical authority of the Catholic Church”. It is intended to explain and to direct the approach to Safeguarding that is to be practised at every level of the Catholic Church in Scotland. ‘
For ‘In God’s Image’ click here to access the Bishops’ Conference of Scotland. You will also be able to access The McLellan Report, it’s Implementation Plan. the IRG Report June 2019 and Safeguarding leaflets/poster.
COVID-19: Reporting Abuse at this Time
Every parish has a Safeguarding co-ordinator. The main role of the co-ordinator is to support the parish priest to ensure that all policies approved by the Bishops’ Conference of Scotland are effectively and appropriately implemented in the Parish. Our co-ordinator is Loretta Scott.
In line with policy requirements a key feature of our safeguarding procedures is that all volunteers working with children and young people and vulnerable adults on a regular basis have been through the Protection of Vulnerable groups process (PVG) and are supported by appropriate training. Any queries about this can be directed to Loretta here Loretta.firstname.lastname@example.org
In addition to the information in the ‘In God’s Image’ manual, Glasgow’s Child protection Committee’s website can provide information to anyone interested in finding out more about protecting children. It is very user friendly and has separate pathways for parents / children and young people / general public / professionals. You can find it here www.glasgowchildprotection.org.uk