Safe Church

We are committed to making our church a safe church

Waverley Baptist Church (WBC) is committed to the highest standard of child safety, and will take all appropriate steps to develop, implement and maintain principles, policies and procedures which ensure children are safe and protected from harm.


WBC has zero tolerance for child abuse, is committed to acting in children’s best interests and keeping them safe, and actively works to empower children. WBC will not knowingly engage any person as a staff member, ministry leader or helper who poses an unacceptable risk to children.


We have specific policies, procedures and training in place that support our leadership team, staff and volunteers to achieve these commitments.


Our Child Protection Policy


All people, regardless of age, gender, race, culture, disability and family/social background have equal rights to this protection.

All people, including children and young people, have the right to be respected and valued as well as feel emotionally, physically and spiritually safe always.

This policy applies to all staff and volunteers of Waverley Baptist Church.

Purpose

  • To protect all children, young people and adults who participate in programs of Waverley Baptist Church

  • To provide staff and volunteers the overarching principles to guide our approach to child protection

Aims

  • Help staff, leaders of ministries, helpers and volunteers to create an organisational culture that protects children from abuse

  • Proper and thorough handling of any and all cases of suspected abuse.

  • Proper training and upkeep of training of leaders and volunteers to keep programs safe

  • Ensuring all people are respected, valued and safe.

Our Safe Church Team consists of

Andrew J
Secretary

Kirsty A
Youth Group Leader

Paul M
Church Member

Roger T
Safe Church Officer

Waverley Baptist is committed to:

Safe recruitment of leaders

  • We will screen all prospective leaders in our ministries before they are appointed, including but not limited to Working with Children Checks.

  • We require all leaders to attend safe church training upon commencement of their role, and a refresher every 3 years.

  • We commit to ongoing training, supervision and support for all leaders.

Code of Conduct

  • We have a Code of Conduct for all staff, leaders and helpers, including boundaries of behaviour and expectations of interactions with children. All staff, leaders and helpers must sign the Code of Conduct prior to commencing their role.

Provision of an open and safe envirment

  • We will be accountable and transparent, allowing participants a say in the program and activities in which they participate.

  • We will create a child-friendly environment, allowing people to raise their concerns in an appropriate manner. We will obtain appropriate information for program participants, including children’s health and family situation, to ensure we are able to care for their physical and emotional needs.

  • We will teach children and young people what they can do if they feel unsafe. We will listen to and act on any concern’s children, young people, or their parents raise with us.

Understand and value diversity

  • We will be inclusive for all people in our programs. This includes adapting programs for anyone with a disability to receive access, as well as providing adequate training for leaders.

  • We will be sensitive to those from ‘Culturally and Linguistically Diverse’ (CALD) backgrounds and those within the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. We will respect all cultures and encourage the participation of all people, recognising their unique contributions to our community.

Risk management

  • In addition to general workplace health and safety risks, we will proactively manage risks of abuse to our children and young people.

  • We have zero tolerance for any/all forms of child abuse. We are committed to preventing abuse of children and young people by identifying risks early and removing and reducing these risks.

Response to allegations of risk of harm/abuse and serious misconduct

  • We are aware of our legal and moral responsibilities in reporting abuse and risk of significant harm.

  • All leaders will report disclosures or suspicions of child abuse according to our procedures. We will listen to and believe children who raise concerns.

  • We will ensure that procedures are clear and appropriate in responding to allegations of abuse.

  • Where a leader has an allegation of abuse made against them, we will provide support to alleged victims and perpetrators and seek appropriate denominational assistance for a just and fair resolution

Response to other disclosures of abuse

  • We will ensure that appropriate training includes the recognition and response to indicators of abuse and neglect.

  • We understand that responding to abuse is not limited to children, but also includes adults within our programs and ministries who may be vulnerable at any given time. We will ensure that appropriate steps are taken to support our vulnerable people within our community.

Regular review

  • This policy and all other policies will be reviewed annually and following any significant incidents, to ensure the policies are meeting all legislative responsibilities and best practice benchmarks.