The Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) undertook an audit of the Diocesan Safeguarding arrangements in June 2017.
The report concluded that the safeguarding team is well-resourced and well-established with experienced staff with a good skill mix, who provide sound safeguarding advice and judgments. They were particularly impressed with the level of decision making regarding case work, and complimented the Diocese on its own self-evaluation, which highlighted realistic areas of development.
The auditors felt the Diocese was committed to learning, and were impressed that a review commissioned by the Bishop had led to the expansion of the safeguarding team, which included a new Chair of the Diocesan Safeguarding Management Committee, who in addition to a number of other roles was the Head of Public Protection for Derby Constabulary.
The world of safeguarding nationally has been experiencing a period of important and sometimes rapid change and the Diocese of Derby along with the Church of England is determined to offer a secure environment in which everyone can thrive, and which earns the confidence of all who are entrusted to its care.
The report states that the Head of HR is supportive, considered and committed and understands the importance of safeguarding. The auditors found that safeguarding operates within a clear line management structure, and a well-functioning Diocesan Office.
The auditors noted that there are strong links between the Diocese and Derby Cathedral. The DSA and safeguarding team provides training for the Cathedral, and a member of Chapter responsible for safeguarding is also a member of the Diocesan Safeguarding Management Team.
Some areas were highlighted for further development by the Diocese. There remains a backlog in the numbers of people who require training and although there is a plan in place it will need close monitoring by the Diocesan Safeguarding Management Committee. Since the audit took place, a new part-time Safeguarding Training Officer has been appointed to deal with the training backlog. The report also highlighted that work was required to develop the overall functioning of the team so that everyone gets an appropriately prompt level of service. Again, since this audit took place, a part-time Safeguarding Administrator has been recruited to deal with general administrative queries.
The Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) has been commissioned to undertake an audit of the safeguarding arrangements of each Diocese of the Church of England. The aim of these audits is to work together to understand how safeguarding is working in each Diocese, and to support the continuing improvements being made. The audit process in each Diocese involved examination of safeguarding leadership arrangements, local policies and practice guidance, the quality of case work, recruitment and training. The auditors also looked at the progress being made in reaching nationally agreed standards, informed by central House of Bishops’ approved policies. An action plan has been produced and agreed by the Diocesan Safeguarding Management Committee to address findings and considerations of the report.
To read the full safeguarding audit for our Diocese, click here.
To view the Action Plan for the Diocese, click here.
Anyone who is affected by a safeguarding issue, particularly in light of this report, should feel free to come forward in confidence and they will be listened to. Details of how to report concerns and find support can be found here.