This week’s blog really does speak for itself and probably doesn’t warrant much commentary from me. The link below relates to a very recent Charity Commission enquiry into the safeguarding arrangements in Birmingham Diocese. The brief report tells the story of inadequate record keeping about safeguarding contracts as well as other concerns, and finally describes how a statutory order has been placed on the trustees to make the necessary improvements.
It makes for sobering reading and is a reminder to churches, circuits and districts that if they don’t pay attention to key safeguarding requirements then trustees can be forced by law to act and their failures made public. This is a theme that District Safeguarding Officers return to again and again when they meet church and circuit safeguarders, and it’s a clear and unambiguous message for church leaders.
Our ongoing need for good quality recording practice and clear evidence of our compliance with the completion of training and safe recruitment procedures has been well signalled in the past and as we, too, approach the IICSA in the spring next year, this becomes an even more critical issue.
There is good evidence that our well-ordered Methodist churches generally and fully understand their fiduciary, insurance and property responsibilities. They understand the consequences if they don’t comply or get it wrong. Is it not time to put safeguarding on an equal footing?