Safeguarding Policy

Embroiderers’ Guild: Safeguarding Adults Policy
The Embroiderers’ Guild (The Guild) is committed to ensuring that it provides a safe and welcoming environment for all members and visitors, and recognises the need to safeguard both children and adults at risk, and to ensure their well-being in all their interactions with the Guild.
Policy Statements:
  •   The Guild will raise awareness of Adult vulnerabilities throughout its organisation, promoting positive actions and signposting members to relevant groups and information.
  •   The Guild will not tolerate behaviours and actions that cause harm and will respond to concerns within (and about) branches or regions.
  •   The Guild will undertake to provide guidance to members who may have concerns outside the Guild, assisting them to find local resources and support.
    We believe that:
  •   We all have a responsibility to help prevent abuse (physical, sexual, psychological, emotional, financial, and/or discriminatory abuse and neglect of adults at risk). Safeguarding is a whole Guild activity and not just the responsibility of designated officers or staff.
  •   Discrimination, harassment and bullying are unacceptable. Members who present these behaviours should be challenged and, if necessary, barred from attending activities. Officers who abuse their position in any way may be required to step down and should not take up any future officer role.
  •   Domestic abuse in all its forms is unacceptable. Should we discover any member is subject to such abuse we should seek to support them in seeking appropriate help and consider what practical help might be appropriate in relation to any volunteer duties they may be undertaking in their branch, region or, nationally, for Guild (HO).
    We are committed to:
  •   The establishment of a safe environment for meetings and other events.
  •   Raising awareness among members to create an informed vigilance about the dangers of
  •   Following the relevant legislation, in line with statutory, local, and specialist guidelines, in
    relation to safeguarding adults at risk.
  •   Ensuring that we keep up to date with national and local developments relating to
    safeguarding, reviewing this policy when needed.
  •   Taking all reasonable steps to ensure that as an organisation, everyone works within the
    agreed procedures of our safeguarding policies.
  •   Supporting Branch and Regional Committees in any action they may need to take in order to
    protect adults at risk.
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Responding to concerns and issues:
Any concern covered by this policy must be registered with the Guild CEO cc. Chair of the Board of Trustees at the outset and, unless there is a compelling urgency, before action is taken.
Where an allegation suggests that a criminal offence may have been committed or there is the prospect of a civil redress being sought, the local Guild representative (member/officer) dealing with the issue should seek immediate advice from the CEO cc. Chair of the Board of Trustees prior to the police or a solicitor being contacted.
If there is an immediate threat of harm, the Police should be contacted without delay and the Guild (CEO) also be informed without delay.
Members reporting an issue or concern directly to HO will receive immediate attention and objective support. Any such reporting will be treated as ‘in confidence’ and sources of information will not be disclosed to investigated parties without prior consent unless there is a legal requirement to do so.
When Guild Head Office (HO) is advised of concerns about behaviours within a Branch or Region by members of that Branch, by visiting Regional officers, or by other concerned individuals it will endeavour to undertake an internal investigation before any formal reporting is actioned. The Guild’s intentions will always be focused on prevention and protection, rather than punitive responses. Where possible, solutions will be sought that reduce or prevent abuse/exploitation, and relevant Guild policies and guidance will be updated to reflect the learning obtained.
Reporting issues or concerns will always be actioned at local level if possible Branches and Regions will need to identify their local authority reporting procedures and, when (or if) necessary, act in compliance with any associated policies. Local Authorities generally publish this information on their websites. All reporting must be objective and factual.
Whenever a concern has been reported, or an issue raised with local services, the Branch or Region will inform the Guild HO (CEO) about the issue, and the response, or advice received. The report to HO should not include any personal information unless there is a specific requirement for the Guild Head office to become directly involved. If this is the case, any personal information provided should be the minimum necessary to address the issue, and HQ will undertake to restrict access to that information on a strict ‘need to know’ basis.
Should the local Branch or Region become involved in any subsequent investigations, or further action, Guild HO should be kept updated. The Guild will assist if needed, seeking advice and guidance from relevant professionals, including legal input if required. We will co-operate with the statutory authorities in any investigation, will follow multi-agency decisions and will maintain confidentiality of any investigations to those directly involved.
The Guild recognises that it does not have the in-house skills needed to advise on Adult Safeguarding issues, and where there are concerns, local advice will be sought. Adult Safeguarding Co-ordinators can usually be contacted via local Adult Social Care services, or through enquiry with the Police.
Discussions concerning safeguarding issues should always be regarded as confidential. A record should be made and kept securely, regardless of the outcome of those discussions. If required, this record should be shared with statutory authorities and Guild HO (CEO).
Wherever possible, consent to report an issue should be obtained from the vulnerable adult concerned. If they do not wish action to be taken their wishes should be respected. Concerns may
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still need to be acted upon if the individual is felt to be at immediate risk of harm, others are at risk, or unacceptable behaviours are impacting on the safe activities of the Guild. Branch officers should consider seeking professional advice from local Safeguarding services before taking formal action in such cases and should share that advice with Guild HO (CEO).
Where allegations of abuse have been raised, the person about whom an allegation is made must not be informed by anyone in the Guild if it is judged that to do so could place a child or adult at increased risk. If the statutory authorities are involved, they should be consulted beforehand.
All Members, volunteers and staff (paid or unpaid) have responsibility to follow the guidance laid out in this policy and related policies, and to pass on any welfare concerns using the required procedures.
We expect all members of the Guild and, in particular staff, regional and branch officers, committee members and volunteers, to promote good practice by being an excellent role model for safeguarding and preventing any form of abuse within the life and work of the Guild, its regions and branches (particularly regional and branch officers), contribute to discussions about safeguarding and to positively involve people in developing safe practices.
Trustees have responsibility to ensure that this policy is kept up to date, and to monitor its effectiveness if/when relevant issues or concerns arise.
This policy was adopted by the Trustees of the Embroiderers’ Guild on 25th April 2017 and published to Staff, Regional Chairs, Branch Chairs, Bucks County Museum Director, and Guild Members within 30 days. Regional and Branch Chairs are expected to publish the policy to all committee members and make members aware that they can read and/or download a copy of this policy from the Guild website (see Members’ Documents).
This policy will be reviewed at the April meeting of the board of trustees to be held in 2019.
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What is abuse of adults at risk?
A vulnerable adult is a person aged 18 years or over who may be unable to take care of themselves or protect themselves from harm or from being exploited.
This may include a person who:
  •   Is elderly and frail
  •   Has a mental illness including dementia
  •   Has a physical or sensory disability
  •   Has a learning disability
  •   Has a severe physical illness
  •   Is a substance misuser
  •   Is homeless
    Abuse is a violation of an individual’s human and civil rights by any other person or persons. Abuse may consist of a single act or repeated acts. It may be physical, verbal or psychological, it may be an act of neglect or an omission to act, or it may occur when a vulnerable person is persuaded to enter into a financial or sexual transaction to which he or she has not consented, or cannot consent. Abuse can occur in any relationship and may result in significant harm to, or exploitation of, the person subjected to it.
    Physical abuse
    This is the infliction of pain or physical injury, which is either caused deliberately, or through lack of care.
    Psychological or emotional abuse
    These are acts or behaviour, which cause mental distress or anguish or negates the wishes of the adult at risk. It is also behaviour that has a harmful effect on the adult at risk’s emotional health and development or any other form of mental cruelty.
    Sexual abuse
    This is the involvement in sexual activities to which the person has not consented or does not truly comprehend and so cannot give informed consent, or where the other party is in a position of trust, power or authority and uses this to override or overcome lack of consent.
    Neglect, or Act of Omission
    This is the repeated deprivation of assistance that the adult at risk needs for important activities of daily living, including the failure to intervene in behaviour which is dangerous to the adult at risk or to others. A vulnerable person may be suffering from neglect when their general well being or development is impaired.
    Financial or material abuse
    This is the inappropriate use, misappropriation, embezzlement or theft of money, property or possessions.
    Discriminatory abuse
    This is the inappropriate treatment of an adult at risk because of their age, gender, race, religion, cultural background, sexuality, disability, etc. Discriminatory abuse exists when values, beliefs or culture result in a misuse of power that denies opportunity to some groups or individuals. Discriminatory abuse links to all other forms of abuse.
    Institutional abuse
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This is the mistreatment or abuse of an adult at risk by a regime or individuals within an institution (e.g. hospital or care home) or in the community. It can be through repeated acts of poor or inadequate care and neglect or poor professional practice.
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The named Child Protection/Vulnerable Adults Officer is:  SALLY MCGONIGLE

Statement of Purpose

This policy will establish the organisation’s position, role and responsibilities and clarifies what is expected from everybody involved in the organisation. It highlights the importance placed by the organisation on the protection of children, young people and vulnerable adults
Every person who participates in Skipton Embroiderer's Guild Branch activities will be able to do so in an enjoyable and safe environment and be protected from harm. This is the responsibility of every adult involved in the branch.
We recognise our responsibility to safeguard and promote the welfare of all children, young people and vulnerable adults by protecting them from physical, sexual or emotional abuse, neglect and bullying.
We will ensure that:
• All children, young people and vulnerable adults whatever their age, culture, disability, gender, language, racial origin, religious beliefs and/ or sexual identity have the right to be protected from harm.
• All suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately.
• All members working in the organisation have a responsibility to report concerns to the designated person

We will seek to safeguard children and young people and vulnerable adults by:
·         valuing them, listening to and respecting them
·         adopting child protection and vulnerable adults guidelines through procedures and a code of conduct for members and volunteers
·         sharing information about child and vulnerable adult protection and good practice with branch members and volunteers
·         sharing information about concerns with agencies who need to know, and involving parents carers, vulnerable adults and children appropriately

Code of Conduct

·         All members should be encouraged to demonstrate exemplary behaviour when working with children or vulnerable adults.
·         Always work in an open environment avoiding private or unobserved situations and encourage open communication.
·         Treat all young people/vulnerable adults equally with respect and dignity
·         Always put the welfare of each young person/ vulnerable adult first
·         Maintain an appropriate distance
·         Make your activity fun and enjoyable
·         Ensure that if any form of manual/physical support is required, it should be provided openly
·         Involve parents/carers wherever possible 
·         Be an excellent role model – this includes not smoking, swearing or drinking alcohol in the company of young people
·         Give enthusiastic and constructive feedback rather than negative criticism
·         Recognise the developmental needs and capacity of young people and vulnerable adults
·         Secure parental consent in writing to act in loco parentis, if the need arises to administer emergency first aid and/or other medical treatment
·         Unauthorised persons should not have access to any lists of members which include the addresses and telephone numbers of young people.

Practices never to be sanctioned:
·         Engaging in rough physical or sexually provocative games, including horseplay
·         Share a room with a child or vulnerable adult
·         Allow or engage in any form of inappropriate touching
·         Allow children or vulnerable adults to use inappropriate language unchallenged
·         Make sexually suggestive comments to a child or vulnerable adult, even in fun
·         Reduce a child or vulnerable adult to tears as a form of control
·         Allow allegations made by a child or vulnerable adult to go unchallenged, unrecorded or not acted upon
·         Do things of a personal nature for children or vulnerable adults that they can do for themselves
·         Invite or allow children or vulnerable adults to stay with you at your home unsupervised.

Incidents that must be reported/recorded:
·         If any of the following occur you should report this immediately to another colleague or the named Child Protection designated person. You should also ensure the parents/carer of the child/vulnerable adult are informed:
·         if you accidentally hurt a child/vulnerable adult
·         If he/she seems distressed in any manner
·         if a child/vulnerable adult appears to be sexually aroused by your actions
·         if a child/vulnerable adult misunderstands or misinterprets something you have done.

What to do if a child, young person or vulnerable adult reports abuse

If someone discloses that they are being abused, then upon receiving the information we will:
• react calmly.
• reassure the person that they were right to tell and that they are not to blame and take what they say seriously.
• be careful not to be deemed as putting words into the person’s mouth, the easiest way of doing this is by asking questions.
• not promise confidentiality.
• make a full and written record of what has been said as soon as possible and not delay in passing on the information.
• Inform the person what we will do next

The report will include:
• The person’s known details including name, date of birth, address and contact numbers
• Whether or not the person making the report is expressing their own concerns or those of someone else.
• The nature of the allegation, including dates, times, specific factors and any other relevant information
• A clear distinction between what is fact, opinion or hearsay.
• A description of any visible bruising or other injuries. Also any indirect signs, such as behavioural changes.
• Details of witnesses to the incidents.
• The child’s account if it can be given, of what has happened and how any  injuries occurred.
• Accounts from others.

When a referral needs to be made, it will be made to the local Children’s Services by the designated person who will clearly state where the person is normally resident and have all the information at hand- details of the person and any written concerns.

Emergency action.
In some cases you may need to protect a child immediately- in these situations the designated person will dial 999. The Police are the only agency with statutory powers for the immediate protection of children.
It is not the Branch’s responsibility to decide whether abuse has taken place or not, however it will pass on information to the appropriate authority immediately.

Permission for photography should be sought from parents/carers of children, young people and vulnerable adults

Members will be asked to read the Safeguarding Policy which is available on the Branch website or may receive a print copy of the Child Protection Policy on request as part of their membership information.

The Policy will be reviewed every year.

The named Child Protection/Vulnerable Adults Officer is  SALLY MCGONIGLE

S/he is the person who will be contacted by anyone concerned about the welfare of a child or vulnerable adult. S/he will be responsible for responding to concerns or allegations.

The named Child Protection/Vulnerable Adults Officer should follow guidelines on the following websites:

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National Day of Stitch

Lovely day stitching butterflies at The Bub in Skipton Town Hall on Saturday.