Safeguarding: What to do - Guidance for Business Connectors & BITC Safeguarding Policy

Please refer to the attached BITC Safeguading Short Guide - What to do  & Policy document

SAFEGUARDING - Yourself, Children and Vulnerable Adults

It is our collective responsibility to ensure that all participants in BITC activity, including all clients, volunteers, staff and secondees are safe when taking part in our programmes and their associated activities.

This is particularly important as some participants, in activities that you may arrange or participate in, may be vulnerable in some way.

The objective of safeguarding is to provide a safe environment and to identify those suffering or likely to suffer significant harm; it is then to take appropriate action to ensure that those concerned are kept safe (Department for Education & Skills, 2006).

All volunteers working directly with children (under 18 years of age) or vulnerable adults without supervision MUST have a valid enhanced DBS check that is less than three years old. This is not a requirement if you are working within the management tier of the organisation and so should not apply to your role as a Business Connector.

In order to protect vulnerable adults and young people, a collaborative approach is essential. Because Business Connectors are working with local community organisations rather than individuals, these local organisations are responsible for having in place robust safeguarding policies and reporting processes.

If you are working with children or vulnerable adults, please adhere to the following guidelines:

Safeguard yourself: for example

  • Limit compromising situations – e.g. always be accompanied by a representative of the organisation with whom you are working; keep doors open where possible; limit physical contact; do not hug young people or vulnerable adults; and do not offer lifts in your car
  • You must not give money, rewards and presents to school children without school permission
  • You must not meet outside school or the community group situation
  • Respect the individual’s family background/ culture/ faith – if you are concerned about an issue you feel you don’t understand speak to the organisation, your Co-ordinator or the school
  • Don’t presume the child is speaking in code to you! E.g. A needle could refer to diabetes; a knock could refer to sporting injury/ play fight.
  • Do not give any young person or vulnerable adult your personal contact details, or accept theirs.
  • Do not link with any young person or vulnerable adult on Social Media sites.

 

Reporting:

If a child or adult discloses to you, it is not the responsibility of Business in the Community, its employees or its volunteers to decide whether or not abuse has taken place or a complaint is justified. It is the responsibility of us all to highlight the issue to the person responsible for safeguarding at the organisation or their nominated deputy.

For any incident that you think may be critical (for example, immediate risk to life) in the immediate event, ensure that you and anyone around you is safe. Subsequently make the responsible person present aware of the situation. Subsequently ensure that your Connector Co-ordinator has full details of what has arisen.

Do:
Stay calm.

Be reassuring, particularly that the individual is doing the right thing by telling you.

Ensure that the young person/vulnerable adult is supported whilst you talk with the responsible people in the organisation and then your Co-ordinator.

Record the information you are provided with and report as quickly as possible to your Co-ordinator and the person responsible for safeguarding at the organisation you are working with.

 

Don’t:

Promise to keep the information secret. Make it clear that you have to report this to keep them safe.

Question the young person/vulnerable adult further, you need to just report what you have been told

Make any suggestions to the individual about how the incident may have happened.

Discuss the information with anyone other than the Connector Co-ordinator and the responsible person for safeguarding