Children, Young People And Vulnerable Adults Safeguarding Policy
OmniMusic makes a positive contribution to a strong and safe community and recognises the right of every individual to stay safe.
This policy seeks to ensure that OmniMusic undertakes its responsibilities with regard to protection of children and / or vulnerable adults and will respond to concerns appropriately. The policy establishes a framework to support paid and unpaid staff in their practices and clarifies the organisation’s expectations.
OmniMusic’s Safeguarding Policy will be reviewed by Trustees every two years, or when there are significant changes in legislation.
Safeguarding is about embedding practices throughout the organisation to ensure the protection of children and / or vulnerable adults wherever possible. In contrast, child and adult protection is about responding to circumstances that arise.
Abuse is a selfish act of oppression and injustice, exploitation and manipulation of power by those in a position of authority. This can be caused by those inflicting harm or those who fail to act to prevent harm. Abuse is not restricted to any socio-economic group, gender, race, age or culture.
It can take a number of forms, including the following:
- Physical abuse
- Sexual abuse
- Emotional abuse
- Financial (or material) abuse
Definition of a child: A child is under the age of 18 (as defined in the United Nations convention on the Rights of a Child).
Definition of Vulnerable Adults: A vulnerable adult is a person aged 18 years or over who may be unable to take care of themselves or protect themselves from harm or from being exploited. This may include a person who:
- is elderly
- has a cognitive impairment, including dementia
- has a physical or sensory disability
- has a learning disability
- has a severe physical illness
- is a substance misuser
- is homeless
All staff (paid or unpaid) have responsibility to follow the guidance laid out in this policy and related policies, and to pass on any welfare concerns using the required procedures.
We expect all staff (paid or unpaid) to promote good practice by being an excellent role model, contribute to discussions about safeguarding and to positively involve people in developing safe practices.
The Trustees have responsibility to ensure the Safeguarding Policy is:
- implemented with sufficient resources allocated to ensure this is possible
- read and adhered to by all paid and unpaid staff with adequate training
- monitored and reviewed on a regular basis in line with local arrangements for safeguarding and DBS monitoring guidance
In addition to this, the Trustee assigned as the Safeguarding Lead has responsibility to:
- receive staff concerns about safeguarding and respond to all seriously, swiftly and appropriately
- develop and maintain effective links with relevant agencies
- take forward concerns and formal reports
OMNIMUSIC STAFF, TUTORS AND EXTERNAL PARTNERS
OmniMusic is committed to delivering music making activities where participants can take part in a safe environment, protected from abuse. To do this, we will:
- ensure all staff and tutors who are in contact with participants provide evidence of a DBS from the last 3 years, or ask staff or tutors to undertake a DBS check with OmniMusic
- keep a log of all staff and practitioners DBS details and review this on a three yearly basis
- give every employee the opportunity to self disclose at the time of the DBS application or when providing evidence in line with the Policy of Rehabilitation of Offenders
- reserve the right to withdraw employment should an individual be deemed unfit to work with children, young people or vulnerable adults
- ask all staff and tutors to read OmniMusic’s Safeguarding Policy and provide written confirmation as evidence
- provide an induction for all new staff and tutors to discuss OmniMusic’s stance on safeguarding and other relevant policies, and allow sufficient discussion time on these matters
- seek to provide appropriate training on all matters of Safeguarding where required
- treat all participants equally with respect and dignity
- use appropriate language, behave in a professional manner and respect professional boundaries; avoid any behaviour which could be misinterpreted or misunderstood
- not work unsupervised or one to one with participants (unless by agreement), or accept sole responsibility for participants
- in the event of one to one music sessions, ensure that the workspace is open and visible to other team members and that appropriate staff remain in the building and their whereabouts is known at all times
- check what safeguarding arrangements are in place with external partner organisations
- include clear minimum requirements for safeguarding and non-compliance procedures’ on contracts and memorandums for external partner organisations
Any breach by staff and/or tutors not following these guidelines could result in disciplinary procedures or enactment of the allegation management procedure.
ONLINE AND REMOTE DELIVERY
Online and remote delivery enable us to deliver work when it may not be possible to deliver live workshops, and also to reach out to participants in remote or isolated places. This way of working does present new risks and challenges including the:
- opportunity for grooming/sexual exploitation
- sharing of personal contact details or information between participants and staff and/or tutors
- inappropriate conversations between participants and staff and/or tutors
- potential allegations against workers
- potential for ‘Zoom bombing’ (platform hijacked by external hackers)
When delivering work online, OmniMusic recognises that this is the equivalent of meeting them ‘face to face’ in a room, and therefore the same duty of care and appropriate behaviour detailed throughout this Safeguarding Policy should be adopted. In addition, the following steps will be taken to mitigate against potential risks specific to online and remote delivery:
- OmniMusic staff will use Zoom as it’s first choice of online platform for remote work
- A member of staff from OmniMusic will administer each session, including generating a password protected Zoom meeting for a pre-arranged time, specific purpose/activity, enable/disable all necessary Zoom meeting features, securely share meeting information with staff, tutors, participants and carers and ensure only invited persons are admitted to the call
- keep accurate records of all online/remote activity and take note of any unusual occurrences, in some instances this may mean the recording of audio/ video/ both for safeguarding purposes. Recording data will be securely retained and
- deleted in line with OmniMusic’s GDPR and Data Protection Policy
- ask all staff, tutors and participants to conduct themselves in the same manner as they would when taking part in a ‘live’ or in-person session including wearing appropriate attire
- ask that, where possible, participants join the online session from a communal space and with a carer/parent/guardian present
In situations where these guidelines cannot reasonably be met, OmniMusic staff have the right to remove individuals from the video call or online session.
REPORTING AND ALLEGATION MANAGEMENT PROCEDURE
The process outlined below details the stages involved in raising and reporting safeguarding concerns while staff or tutors are working for OmniMusic:
- Listen to the allegation being made or safeguarding concern; ask questions only for clarification
- Do not promise confidentiality; explain the reporting procedure and what you will do as a result of this
- Communicate your concerns with a relevant senior member of staff on site; do not leave the premises without reporting what has happened
- Make an accurate written record, detailing the concern or allegation
- Contact OmniMusic staff or the Safeguarding Officer as soon as possible and provide a full account of what has occurred
- Obtain permission to make referral if safe and appropriate
If needed seek advice from the Children and Families Helpdesk or Adults Helpdesk or complete the Local Authority Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Incident Report Form if required and submit to the local authority within 24 hours of making a contact
Ensure that feedback from the Local Authority is received and their response recorded
OmniMusic also recognises its duty to report concerns or allegations – or receive reports of concerns or allegations – against its staff (paid or unpaid) within the organisation or by a professional from another organisation. The process for raising and dealing with allegations is as follows:
- Any member of staff (paid or unpaid) from OmniMusic is required to report any concerns in the first instance to their line manager or the Safeguarding Officer
- Contact local authority for advice
- Follow the advice provided
OmniMusic recognises its legal duty to report any concerns about unsafe practice by any of its paid or unpaid staff to the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA), according to the ISA referral guidance document.
Incidences of transgression of this policy should be reported in confidence to the Safeguarding Officer:
Chair of the Board at email@example.com
These will be investigated in confidence and appropriate actions taken.
Last reviewed January 2023
Next review date: January 2024