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SAFEGUARDING POLICY AND PROCEDURES

1. Introduction

The Academy Hub makes a positive contribution to a strong and safe community and recognises the right of every individual to stay safe. The Academy Hub comes into contact with young adults through, interviews, training and apprentice recruitment.
This policy seeks to ensure that The Academy Hub undertakes its responsibilities with regard to protecting young adults and will respond to any concerns appropriately. This policy establishes a framework to support paid and unpaid staff in their practices and clarifies our organisations expectations.

2. Legislation Framework

  • Working together to safeguard Children 2010
  • The children Act 1989
  • The adoption and children Act 2006
  • The Children Act 2004
  • Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006
  • Care Standards Act 2000
  • Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998
  • The Police Act – CRB 1997
  • Mental Health Act 1983
  • NHS and Community Care Act 1990
  • Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974
  • Data Protection Act 1998
  • Human Rights Act 1998
  • Sexual Offences Act 2003
  • Children and Families Act 2014

3. Definition of Safeguarding

Safeguarding is about embedding practices throughout our organisation to ensure the protection of young adults wherever possible
Abuse is a selfish act of oppression and injustice, exploitation and manipulation of power by those in a position of authority. This can be caused by those inflicting harm or those who fail to act to prevent harm. Abuse is not restricted to any socio-economic group, gender or culture. It can take any number of forms including the following:

  • Physical abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Emotional abuse
  • Bullying
  • Neglect
  • Financial abuse

Definition of a child – a child is under the age of 18 (as defined in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of a Child)
Definition of a Vulnerable Adult is a person aged 18 years or over who is unable to take care of themselves or protect themselves from harm or from being exploited

4. Responsibilities

It is the responsibility of ALL STAFF, including contractors and freelancers to follow the guidance laid out in this policy and related policies and to pass on any welfare concerns using the required procedure. We expect all staff to promote good practice by being an excellent role model, contribute to discussions about safeguarding and to positively involve people in developing safe practices.
The Designated Senior Manager at The Academy Hub is Josh Campbell. This person’s responsibilities are as follows:

  • The first point of contact for all staff, volunteer or apprentice
  • Ensures that the safeguarding policy is kept up to date every 2 years
  • Ensures that all personnel comply with safe recruitment procedures
  • Ensures all concerns are logged and ensure all personnel comply

5. Implementation

The scope of our Safeguarding Policy is broad and is implemented via a range of policies and procedures within the organisation. This policy should be read alongside our policies and procedures on:

  • Recruitment, induction and training
  • Role of the designated safeguarding officer
  • Dealing with disclosures and concerns about a child or young person
  • Managing allegation against staff and volunteers
  • Recording and information sharing
  • Code of conduct for staff and volunteers
  • Safer recruitment
  • E-safety
  • Anti-bullying
  • Complaints
  • Whistleblowing
  • Health and Safety
  • Training, Supervision and Support
  • Lone working policy and procedure
  • Quality assurance

6. Communication, Training and Support for Staff

The Academy Hub commits resources for induction training for staff, effective communication and support mechanisms in relation to safeguarding.
Induction will include:

  • Training – all staff who through their role are in contact with young adults and/or vulnerable adults will have access to safeguarding training at the appropriate level.
  • Communication and discussion of safeguarding issues
  • Support – We recognise that involvement in situations where there is a risk or actual harm can be stressful for staff concerned. Reviews to be competed daily and discussed with senior management, regular briefings after interviews and during the training to highlight any concerns.

7. Professional Boundaries

Professional boundaries are what define the limits of a relationship between a support worker and a client. They are a set of standards we agree to uphold that allows this necessary and often close relationship to exist whilst ensuring the correct detachment is kept in place
The Academy Hub expects its staff to protect the professional integrity of themselves and the organisation. The following professional boundary must be adhered to:

  • No contact outside the training with any minors
  • No relationships to be fostered or pursued

If the professional boundaries and/or policies are breached this could result in disciplinary procedures or enactment of the allegation management procedures

8. Reporting

The process below details the stages in raising and report safeguarding concerns at The Academy Hub.

9. Allegation Management

The Academy Hub recognises its duty to report concerns or allegations against its staff within the organisation or by a professional from anther organisation.
The process for raising and dealing with allegations is as follows:

  • It is the remit of Social Services and/or the Police and not anyone connected with The Academy Hub to investigate safeguarding concerns.
  • Safeguarding concerns may include concerns regarding a child or an adult’s welfare, health or safety or concerns that the child or adult is being abused or harmed or is at risk of abuse or harm (“safeguarding concerns”).
  • If a child or adult as defined in section 3 raises a safeguarding concern for example, that they are being abused or harmed or any individual raises such a concern, the matter should be reported to the Designated Safeguarding Officer or one of the Deputies without delay using the referral form in Appendix I.
  • If in any doubt as to whether a safeguarding concern should be reported, a report should be made to the Designated Safeguarding Officer or Deputy in any event.
  • Some useful dos and don’ts to bear in mind are set out in Appendix 2.
  • If a member of staff, contractor or freelancer of The Academy Hub becomes aware of a safeguarding issue whilst on placement or work-based learning or in a professional or clinical setting they should normally report any concern in the first instance to the Safeguarding Officer of the placement or work based learning provider, or in the professional or clinical setting.
  • If a Designated Safeguarding Officer or Deputy considers that the child or adult who is vulnerable is being abused or harmed or at risk of abuse or harm s/he may make a referral to social services or the police as appropriate using the relevant referral form in Appendix 1. If the Designated Safeguarding Officer or Deputy is not available or the safeguarding concern involves for example a concern against them, then another director should be contacted.
  • If any student or member of staff other than the Designated Safeguarding Officers or Deputies makes a referral to social services or the police, then they must notify a Designated Safeguarding Officer or Deputy that a referral has been made as soon as reasonably practicable.
  • The Designated Safeguarding Officer or Deputy will consult with an identified contact at Social Services to determine whether the allegation warrants further investigation.

The Academy Hub recognises its legal duty to report any concerns about unsafe practice by any of its staff to the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) according to the ISA referral document http://www.isa-gov.org.uk

10. Risk Assessment

Circumstances may arise in which The Academy Hub is concerned that staff may pose a risk to the welfare, health and/or safety of a child or adult. In such circumstances, The Academy Hub may consider it more appropriate to implement this policy and procedure in dealing with the matter rather than an alternative policy and procedure e.g. the procedure for dealing with matters of conduct. In such cases The Academy Hub will deal with matters by assessing the potential risks in the following way.
The designated senior manager (or nominee) is responsible for ensuring that appropriate risk assessments are carried out which seek to identify any risks posed by a particular member of staff and consider the appropriate way to manage such risks and may involve other members of The Academy Hub staff in collating relevant information including where appropriate from external experts or professions (It is not the role of The Academy Hub to investigate the situation, only to assess the risk).
The designated senior manager (or nominee) will decide the exact process to be followed in the circumstances of the case and with due regard to fairness. However, it is anticipated that, where appropriate, information and concerns will be shared with the member of staff (who is thought to pose a risk), and the member of staff will be given the opportunity to (in person or in writing) respond to that information and concerns. They may invite the member of staff, to a meeting to discuss the concern that has been raised. The member of staff will have the ability to respond to any issue raised and has the right to be accompanied to this meeting by a colleague or a union representative. In some cases this may not be appropriate e.g. where it was considered this might result in harm being committed against a child or adult.
Following this process, the designated senior manager (or nominee) will determine whether or not the member of staff poses any risk and if so what the risks are and how these should be managed for example under an action plan.
The outcome of the risk assessment process may be as follows (this is not an exhaustive list):

  • Make a referral to an external agency e.g. the police or social services;
  • Notifying the member of staff’s manager that conditions must be met to allow the member of staff to continue working.
  • Take action under an alternative procedure e.g. the procedure for deal with matters of conduct.
  • May recommend to directors that the member of staff be suspended to allow further investigation to take place under Appendix 4 of the procedure for dealing with matters of conduct.
  • No action to be taken.

The designated senior manager (or nominee) is responsible for ensuring that a record of the risk assessment process and the outcome of the risk assessment is made. The designated senior manager (or nominee) is responsible for monitoring the matter and/or conducting further risk assessments, taking into account up-to-date information, if s/he reasonably considers this necessary and appropriate.

11. Managing

Information with be gathered, recorded and stored in accordance with the following policies
All staff must be aware that they have a professional duty to share information with other agencies in order to safeguard children and vulnerable adults. The public interest in safeguarding children and vulnerable adults may override confidentiality interests. However information will be shared on a need to know basis only as judged by the Designated Senior Manager.
All staff must be aware that they cannot promise service users or their families/carers that they will keep secrets.

12. Conflict resolution and complaints

The Academy Hub is aware of the GSCB policy on resolution of profession disagreements in work relating to the safety of children/escalation policy (www.gscb.org.uk) and if necessary this will be taken forward by our Designated Senior Manager, Josh Campbell (josh.campbell@aos.org.uk). In his absence (or if the issue concerns him) contact should be made with Samantha Lewis (sam.lewis@aos.org.uk).
Conflicts in respect to safety of vulnerable adults will be taken forward by DSM via GCC community and Adult Care Directories

13. Communication and Review policy

The Academy Hub will make clients aware of the Safeguarding Policy through the following means, email upon request and downloadable from our website. This will include any changes or updates to the current policy.
The Policy will be reviewed by Josh Campbell every 2 years or when any changes are made in legislation.

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