The Parish of Our Lady and the English Martyrs operates a policy of safe recruitment of volunteers as advocated by the Diocesan Child Protections Commission. This means that anyone who helps in one the ministries (e.g. choir, reader or extraordinary minister of Holy Communion) or anyone who takes an active part in any voluntary activity (e.g. Children’s Liturgy, cleaners, Sacramental Programme or SVP) all have to follow a set procedure before starting their position.
Every official parish activity has a coordinator who is responsible for ensuring that no person actually starts their chosen activity without having been cleared first, by going through the required stages.
Every volunteer in the parish has to complete the Safe Recruitment forms for the parish. Any person who has more substantial contact with children or vulnerable adults needs to go a step further and get a DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) clearance. This is a straightforward process and just involves the Safeguarding Coordinator completing an identification form with the volunteer and then sending it off to the cathedral. It is then forwarded to the DBS where the actual checks take place. These documents are confidential and if anything is uncovered, it is not passed back to the parish. If a satisfactory clearance is received, the parish gets clearance from the cathedral to appoint the volunteer.
This might sound like a lot of fuss but it is done to make sure we do our best to protect children and vulnerable adults in our care from harm.
If you have any questions about this please feel free to contact the Safeguarding Coordinator via the Parish office.