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Safe churches begin and end with the knowledge that God’s love is for all people. We are called to love all others, but God also has a special concern for the poor, the marginalised and the oppressed.
Safeguarding is both an individual and a corporate responsibility.
The Working with Children (Risk Management and Screening) Act 2000 and the Working with Children (Risk Management and Screening) Regulation 2011 have certain requirements that relate to churches.
The Safe People, Places and Programs policy addresses the obligations and responsibilities of churches to provide safe environments for all people that they engage with.
A suite of tools and resources is provided on this site and updated regularly, to assist in the implementation of the Safe People, Places and Programs policy.
Having a commitment to good practices in selecting, screening and training of volunteers and employees who are entrusted with working with children, young and vulnerable people is key to creating a safe environment within a church.
Creating a safe place at church means looking at a range of different topics, but particular attention should be paid to the physical, emotional and spiritual aspects.
Basic guidelines for all who use the church facilities and grounds
We encounter risk in our life every day. In just crossing the street we undertake a risk assessment for ourselves. Risk assessment is the simple process used to determine whether to proceed with an activity or not.
The leadership of the church are responsible for reviewing and approving planned activities and programs prior to their commencement.
To be comfortable about approving activities, those who are overseeing church activities should know that the people planning the activity have asked and answered these questions:
The leadership of the church should develop an Emergency Response Plan (ERP) for their church community. It is important that leaders and helpers are aware of this plan, and equipped with proper first aid supplies and have access to qualified personnel.
Use the following forms and processes for recording and responding to a disclosure of abuse or allegations of abuse or inappropriate conduct:
A key principle of safe churches is that employees and volunteers are equipped with the knowledge, skills and awareness to keep children and vulnerable people safe through ongoing education and training, and they are appropriately screened for their suitability to work with children and vulnerable people.
Here are some online and workshop based training opportunities:
Safe Ministry check
CofCQ offers affiliated churches access to the Safe Ministry Check program. Developed in partnership with Ansvar insurance, Safe Ministry Check (SMC) is an online program that provides a process and record of screening and training of volunteers, leaders and board members. Safe Ministry Check focuses on promoting a safe culture and helping leaders and volunteers understand their responsibilities for keeping people safe. It also helps churches meet many of the obligations in relation to insurance coverage, and compliance with legislation and the CofCQ Safe People, Places and Programs Policy.
Individuals are enrolled in training videos and are screened based on their nominated ministry role/s and responsibilities. Screening includes Blue Card verification if working with children, agreeing to a code of conduct, self-disclosure questions and 2 referee checks (automated via email).
Please contact Church Support at email@example.com or 1800 193 438 for more information.