Alpha at SS Alban & Stephen Catholic Church in St Albans
Safeguarding & Social Networking
Over the past 6 months the Parish Safeguarding Team and our
Youth Strategy Team have been working together to provide our parishioners
with an up-to-date and relevant set of guidelines for Saefguarding and Social
Networking within the Parish
These policies (approved by the PPC) are now available for
Please note that these are not Diocesan document nor is
it a demand for the use of social networking sites to be avoided - it is merely
sound and relevant advice for us as parishioners, and a reminder of the responsibility
those of us involved in parish ministries have in communicating within and
concerning our parish.
Treat all people with dignity and respect.
Provide an example you wish others to follow
Respect people's right to personal privacy.
Plan activities which involve more than one adult/leader
being present, or in the sight or hearing of others.
If you are visiting or driving on your own, make sure others
know what you are doing.
Be aware of/read and follow Diocesan/national procedures
and guidance, copies of these are held in the Presbytery.
Encourage children, young people and vulnerable adults to
feel comfortable and confident enough to point out attitudes or behaviours
they do not like.
Remember that others might misinterpret your actions, no
matter how well-intentioned.
If you are in any situation that makes you feel uncomfortable
or worried, please share this with someone else such as your parish safeguarding
rep or group co-ordinator.
Challenge unacceptable behaviour and report all allegations/suspicions
Permit abusive peer activities (ridiculing, bullying).
Promise any individual that whatever they tell you can always
be kept between the two of you.
Keep any disclosure information to yourself.
Have any inappropriate physical or verbal contact with others.
Jump to conclusions without checking facts.
Show favouritism to any individual.
Make suggestive remarks or gestures, even in fun.
Let concerns, suspicions, disclosure or allegations of abuse
go unrecorded or unreported.
Have private contact with under eighteens or vulnerable adults
via Email, text, etc.
RESPONDING TO CONCERNS
Listen and keep on listening.
Do not ask questions.
Do not promise confidentiality.
Accept what you are being told without interruption.
Record the facts as you know them as soon as possible and
pass them to the Parish Safeguarding Representative or the Diocesan Safeguarding
Do not talk to others including parents/relatives.
Keep any disclosure information to yourself and the appropriate
Depending on the age and capacity of the individual concerned,
keep them informed of the steps you are taking.
Ensure the immediate safety of the child, young person, or
vulnerable adult. If you feel there is extreme or immediate danger you may
want to contact the police or Social Services direct. Please seek support
from your group co-ordinator if you need to.
For Social Networking, there are three documents:
one is specifically for our young people, one for all those involved in Parish
ministry and one of general advice for all parishioners.
Please download a copy of whichever is most relevant to you and take time
to read them. These have been written and produced in order to keep our young
people and all parishioners safe and aware of the many pitfalls which one
can experience whilst enjoying the communication opportunities social networking