What you have a right to expect!
All children and young people have a fundamental right to be respected, nurtured, cared for and protected from harm or the risk of harm. These basic rights are embedded in our Gospel values and within international and domestic laws.
The rights of children and young people are paramount. Children and young people must be listened to and heard. Concerns and allegations must be taken seriously, swiftly reported, appropriately recorded and dealt with as required by law.
The Archdiocese has codes of conduct for adults and children, which set out clear guidelines on what is and what is not acceptable behaviour. Children and young people must be made aware of the importance of proper procedures and codes of conduct for adults as well as themselves in order to better manage their own safety.
The Archdiocese Safeguarding Policy and Procedures is available by clicking this link.
- Operate within Church guidelines at all times and report all allegations and concerns of abuse. Provide good example and act as positive role models. Always work openly and be visible to others;
- Treat everyone with courtesy, dignity and respect in an open culture where no one is afraid to bring up issues in an appropriate manner;
- Not discriminate or use language that could be seen as discriminating against those of a different race, culture, age, gender, disability, religious persuasion, sexual orientation or political view;
- Respect each person’s boundaries and help them develop their own sense of their rights as well as helping them to know what they can do if they feel that there is a problem;
- Give everyone a voice and listen to what they have to say. Operate a positive approach to managing behavior and be aware of and challenge bullying;
- Actively encourage children and young people to become involved in drawing up procedures when planning services.
Adults Should Never
- Develop relationships with children or young people which could be deemed exploitative or abusive. Spend time alone with children, show favouritism or leave them unattended;
- Take children alone on a car journey or to the adult’s home;
- Cause anyone to suffer humiliating or degrading treatment or physically punish anyone or act in ways that may be abusive or may place anyone at risk of abuse;
- Let allegations go unrecorded or unreported or ask children or young people to keep secrets;
- Participate in or condone behaviour which is illegal, unsafe or abusive or allow any form of dangerous behaviour or activity which could put anyone at risk;
- Engage in rough physical games or horseplay apart from structured sports activities or allow anyone to use inappropriate language unchallenged;
- Consume alcohol, smoke or use illegal substances in the presence of children or young people for whom they have responsibility;
- Do things of a personal nature for a child or young person that they can do themselves or use images or photographs without seeking permission of parents, carers and the young person if he/she is of an age to give informed consent.
Children and Young People Should
- Report any behaviour that makes you feel uncomfortable. If anyone is harming or trying to harm you, tell your parents or a trusted adult immediately or contact Pat or Eleanor – details on the front cover;
- Respect yourself. Be mannerly and take care of your own safety. Do not use cigarettes, alcohol or drugs. Always do your best in any activity and always choose to do the right thing;
- Never have any substances in your possession that may harm or pose a risk to any member of the group, group leaders or the property in which the activity is held;
- Be kind to and respect others regardless of ability, ethnic origin, cultural background, sexual orientation or religion. Never bully, exclude or engage in name calling against others;
- Not use foul or abusive language. Remember that other people have feelings too, so do not hurt them. Never use violence against another person;
- Keep mobile phones on silent or switched off during Church activities and don’t take audio or visual recording of anyone present at the Church activity without permission;
- Take care of your own property and respect the property of others. Do not take things without asking. Take care of equipment and the building. Put litter in the bins;
- Always be prepared and be willing to make appropriate suggestions to make things better or safer when services are being planned;
- Follow the instructions and directions of the activity leader and remain in the supervised area at all times during Church activity;
- Arrive on time and depart at the appropriate time from Church activity.