Safeguarding Policy

Table of contents:

1.0 Safeguarding Children/Adults at Risk Policy Statement & Principles

1.1 Purpose and scope of the Policy

1.2 Definition of a child, young person, or adult at risk

1.3 Legal framework

1.4 Our core safeguarding principles

1.5 Our policy aims

1.6 Accountability

1.7 Review process


2.0 Roles and Responsibilities

2.1 Safeguarding Lead Officer responsibilities

2.2 Wakefield Council staff responsibilities

2.3 Local Area Designated Officer responsibilities


3.0 Raising a Concern and Taking action

3.1 Dealing with disclosures

3.2 Information sharing and consent

3.3 Support for staff

3.4 Flowchart explaining when and how to share information


4.0 Organisational responsibilities

4.1 Safer recruitment

4.2 Training and induction

4.3 Whistleblowing

4.4 Position of trust

4.5 Social media

4.6 Allegations against employees or volunteers

4.7 Clubs and hirers of Sport and Health Improvement facilities

4.8 Unsupervised children

5.0 Definitions and further information

5.1 Categories of abuse (as defined by legislation)

5.2 Other types of abuse

5.3 Flowchart for reporting safeguarding concerns

5.4 Children and Adults Mental Health & Safeguarding

5.5 Further guidelines and information


Appendices Page No.

A1: Legislation, policies and guidance

A2: Safeguarding Lead Officers and Agency Contacts

A3: Training guidance

A4: Definitions of Abuse

1.0 Safeguarding Children/Adults at Risk Policy Statement & Principles

1.1 The purpose and scope of this policy statement is:

To protect children, young people and adults at risk who receive services from the Sport and Health Improvement Service from harm. This includes the children of adults who use our services

To provide staff, as well as children and young people, their families and adults at risk with overarching principles that guide our approach to safeguarding

This policy applies to and should be read by anyone working on behalf of the Sport and Health Improvement Service, including senior managers, paid staff, agency staff, sessional workers, commissioned providers staff, volunteers and students.

We endeavour to provide a safe and welcoming environment where children and young people and adults at risk are respected and valued. We believe that children and young people and adults at risk should never experience abuse of any kind and we have a responsibility to promote their welfare. To keep them safe and to practice and have procedures in place which protect them. We will act quickly and follow our procedures to ensure that children and young people and adults at risk receive effective protection and support if necessary. We work in partnership with Wakefield Safeguarding Children's Partnership and Wakefield Safeguarding Adults Board. We also collaborate with Social Care Direct to seek advice or make referrals.

1.2 Definitions

In England a child is defined as anyone who has not yet reached their 18th birthday. Child protection guidance points out that even if a child has reached 16 years of age and is:

  • living independently
  • in further education
  • a member of the armed forces
  • in hospital; or
  • in custody in the secure estate

They are still legally children until the age of 18 years old and they should be given the same protection and entitlements as any other child[1].

An adult at risk is defined as being aged 18 years or over, who may be in need of community care services by reason of mental or other disability, age or illness; and who is or may be unable to take care of him or herself, or unable to protect him or herself against significant harm or exploitation[2].

1.3 Legal Framework

This policy has been drawn up on the basis of legislation, policy and guidance that seeks to protect children, young people and adults at risk in England (Appendix 1).

1.4 Our Core Safeguarding Principles

  • The welfare of children and young people and adults at risk is paramount
  • All children and young people and adults at risk, regardless of age, gender, ability, culture, race, language, religion, or sexual identity have equal rights to protection
  • All staff and volunteers have an equal responsibility to identify and act on any suspicion or disclosure that may suggest that a child, young person, or adult at risk, is at risk of harm
  • The Service has a culture of transparency, openness and, if required, challenge to maintain high standards in safeguarding

1.5 Our Policy Aims

To provide staff and volunteers with necessary information to enable them to meet their safeguarding responsibilities
To ensure that there is a consistent approach to safeguarding children and young people and adults at risk across the Service
To demonstrate our commitment towards safeguarding children and young people and adults at risk who utilise the Sport and Health Improvement Service

1.6 Accountability

The Sport and Health Improvement Service provides services for children, young people and adults at risk, every member of staff and volunteer has a legal and moral responsibility to protect them from abuse.

All staff are accountable for their own actions and are required to report safeguarding issues in accordance with the policy procedures.

All clubs and volunteers are required to sign to acknowledge that they have read and are following this safeguarding policy, which may be additional to their own Governing Body safeguarding policy requirements.

1.7 Review Process

This policy is 'active' and will be regularly monitored to ensure that it remains relevant and that it is being used effectively. A full review of the policy will be undertaken on an annual basis or as required by changing legislation. All changes will be communicated to employees, clubs and volunteers.

2.0 Roles and Responsibilities

All staff have a responsibility for safeguarding regardless of their role, this is outlined in Working Together to Safeguard Children (HM Government, 2018)[3] and the Care Act 2014 (HM Government, 2014)[4].

2.1 Safeguarding Lead Officer responsibilities

Safeguarding Lead Officers are appointed within the service, this is explicit in the role holder's job description. The Safeguarding Lead Officers will have the appropriate status within the Service, and they will be given training, support, and resources to have the skills and knowledge required to carry out the role. Their training will be updated at least every 2 years and there will be enough Safeguarding Lead Officers to ensure cover 365 days a year (appendix 2).

  • provide a point of contact for staff members who require advice and support about safeguarding concerns
  • liaise with the relevant safeguarding agencies for advice and direction and take the lead responsibility for safeguarding
    monitor, manage and record incidents or concerns
  • refer cases of suspected abuse or when a crime has been committed to the relevant authority, i.e. Children's Social Care, Adult Social Care, Police etc.
  • will be the PREVENT lead and refer cases where there is a concern about radicalisation
  • refer cases to the Disclosure and Barring service when a member of staff is dismissed or left due to risk/harm to a child, young person, or adult at risk
  • refer and liaise with the Local Area Designated Officer (LADO) when a safeguarding allegation is made against a member of staff
  • consult with Human Resources regarding allegations against staff or volunteers and, where appropriate make decisions regarding the initiation of action including investigations, suspension and disciplinary action
  • have joint responsibility with the Service Manager to ensure that policy and procedures are followed within the Service, and they are regularly reviewed and updated

2.2 Wakefield Council Staff responsibilities

Wakefield Council staff will receive safeguarding training at a level appropriate to their role and understand this policy and procedures and their responsibilities in relation to safeguarding below:

  • responsible for promoting a safe environment for children/adults at risk and conducting themselves appropriately at all times
  • be aware of what constitutes a threat, neglect or abuse
  • responsible for reporting safeguarding concerns/complaints immediately to their manager or a Safeguarding Lead Officer
  • ensuring that information is recorded correctly on the current
  • safeguarding Incident Form (Appendix 4)
  • work within the Council's Code of Conduct[5]

2.3 Local Area Designated Officer responsibilities

The Local Authority has a Designated Officer (LADO), it is the role of the LADO to manage and oversee all allegations against individuals who work with children (whether paid or voluntary) and fall within the scope of this policy:

  • where an individual may have behaved in a way that has harmed, or may harm a child
  • where an individual has possibly committed a criminal offence against or related to a child
  • where an individual has behaved towards a child/children in a way that indicates they may pose a risk of harm to children

All allegations that come to the attention of the Sport and Health Improvement Service should be notified to the LADO within one working day by emailing or calling LADO, Children and Young People Services, Safeguarding and Review Unit.
Tel: 01977 727032 / 07711797847

The LADO is involved from the initial phase of the allegation through to the conclusion of the case. The LADO is available to discuss any concerns and to assist in deciding whether it is appropriate to make a referral and/or take any immediate management action to protect a child (Appendix 2).

3.0 Raising a Concern and Taking action

All staff and volunteers have a duty to inform their manager or a Safeguarding Lead Officer of any concerns about possible abuse or neglect, without delay. Remember, doing nothing is never an option and any child, young person, or adult at risk in any family could become a victim of abuse. It is important to also remember that children and young people and adults at risk can be harmed outside their families such as through criminal exploitation and county lines activity (moving drugs around the country). Staff should always remain professionally curious. Key points to remember are:

  • if an emergency, take the necessary action, i.e., call 999 seek medical attention
  • children and young people are three times more likely to be abused. Staff should be vigilant in ensuring that there are being cared for by their carers. The same vigilance must be applied to adults at risk of harm who may attend our services with a carer who should stay with them at all times.
  • all concerns should be reported to the Safeguarding Lead Officer or your Manager as soon as possible
  • a Safeguarding Incident Form must always be completed
  • do not start your own investigation
  • share information on a need-to-know basis only, do not discuss unnecessarily with other colleagues, and never share details with your friends or family and/or on social media.
  • seek support for yourself if you are distressed

A concern may be something you have been told about or something you have witnessed i.e., changes in a person's behaviour, or how they are treated by others.

You need to be clear about the immediate cause for concern; this should include why you suspect abuse or what you have been told, and the extent to which the person would appear to be at risk of harm. If you suspect that a crime has been committed, then you should be aware of the need to preserve evidence e.g., not touching or moving anything.

Where possible, you should include full information about the person at risk and the person or organisation alleged to have caused harm – name(s), address, gender, date of birth (or approximate age if information cannot be obtained), name(s) of person (s) with parental responsibility for a child, and primary carer (adults at risk)

If you do not have this information then you should still inform your Manager or Safeguarding Lead Officer about your concern, as it may provide an additional piece of information to an already emerging picture. If you speak to your Manager, they will pass the information to a Safeguarding Lead Officer (Appendix 2).

As a minimum include the following information in a factual record, which must be recorded on the Safeguarding Incident Report Form (Appendix 4):

  • date, time, and location of the incident and/or disclosure
  • exactly what you have been told (record the person's own words) and/or exactly what you have witnessed
  • the appearance and behaviour of the individual at risk and any injuries observed

It may also be that you don't have any details at all about the child, young person or adult being harmed (or who you think is going to be harmed) but this must not stop you from getting them help. If you have seen, or heard, or been made aware of any situation that alarms and worries you then you must tell your manager or a safeguarding lead officer without delay. Remember if in doubt seek advice – it is okay not to know all the answers and to ask for help. Don't try and deal with a situation on your own.

If a child or adult does start to make a disclosure of harm to you; you may wish to use the acronym 'TED' as a reminder that the child/adult at risk can be encouraged to 'Tell', 'Explain' and 'Describe' (TED). Once you have raised your concern with your manager or Safeguarding Lead Officer you may be asked to provide additional information or to clarify information about your concerns, either by them or by the appropriate professional lead in the area. Once a decision has been made, your Manager or Safeguarding Lead Officer will let you know what has happened unless this would jeopardise an ongoing criminal investigation.

3.1 Dealing with disclosures

It takes a lot of courage for a child, young person or adult at risk to disclose that they are being abused. They may feel ashamed, particularly if the abuse is sexual, their abuser may have made threats about what will happen if they tell. They may have lost all trust in adults, or they may have been told and believe that the abuse is their own fault. Basic guidelines to follow when dealing with disclosures;

  • stay calm and actively listen, let the child/adult at risk guide the pace
  • do not show shock at what you are hearing
  • do not investigate, if you need to clarify what is being said, use open questions (TED)
  • reassure the child/adult at risk that they have done the right thing talking to you
  • never promise to keep a secret you have a duty to ensure the information is passed on.
    • If a child/adult at risk requests confidentiality use a 'prepared' response, such as 'I'm really concerned about what you have told me and I have a responsibility to help ensure that you are safe
    • To help make sure you are safe, I have to tell someone (name person) who will know how to help us to do this'. Make sure the child/adult at risk understands what will happen next with their information
  • record factually what you have been told or observed as soon as possible

Remember for children, young people and adults at risk that need help – every day matters.

3.2 Information sharing and consent

According to government legislation fears about sharing information should not be allowed to stand in the way of the need to safeguard and protect children, young people and adults at risk from abuse or neglect. You do not necessarily need the consent of the information subject to share their personal information; when necessary if there is a risk of harm information can be shared legally without consent to raise concerns. (Appendix 1).

Wherever possible you should seek consent whilst being open and honest about why, what and how and with whom their information will be shared. If you gain consent to share information, it must be explicit and freely given. If it is not appropriate or safe to seek consent and a decision to share information without consent is made, a record of what has been shared must be kept (see flow chart below). The Data Protection Act 2018 (General Data Protection Regulation – GDPR) does not forbid the collection and sharing of personal information, it provides a framework to ensure that personal information is shared appropriately (Appendix 1). The 7 golden rules to sharing information;

  • data protection/GDPR/human rights laws are not a barrier to sharing your concerns
  • be open and honest (unless it is unsafe or inappropriate)
  • seek advice (anonymise if necessary)
  • where appropriate share information with consent
  • consider safety and wellbeing of the individual
  • sharing should be necessary, proportionate, relevant, adequate, accurate, timely and secure
  • a record should be kept of your decision and the reasons for it

3.3 Support for staff

Wakefield Council provides an Occupational Health Unit, which offers employees an independent and confidential service. If a member of staff involved in raising a safeguarding concern feels they require support, due to the nature of the issue, then they should seek advice from their manager.

3.4 Flowchart explaining when and how to share information

Information sharing flowchart

4.0 Organisational responsibilities

Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018, Section 11 of the Children Act 2004 and the Care Act 2014 (Appendix 1) place a duty on the Sport and Health Improvement Service to ensure their functions, and any services that they contract out are fulfilled with consideration to the need to safeguard and promote the welfare of children, young people, and adults at risk. The following section identifies procedures that the Sport & Health Improvement Service have in place to support this legislation.

4.1 Safer recruitment

The service ensures that all reasonable steps are taken to avoid the recruitment of unsuitable staff. Where roles involve working with children, young people and adults at risk and the role is deemed appropriate for checking, an enhanced (with lists) check from the Disclosure and Barring Service is a pre-requisite. The checks are obtained in line with the Wakefield Council's 'Recruitment and Selection policy[6]. At least one member of a recruitment panel will have attended safer recruitment training.

Pre-selection checks include:

  • a completed application form containing details of history and a disclosure of any criminal records
  • consent from the applicant to seek information from the Disclosure and Barring Service (where appropriate)
  • two confidential references, including one from previous work with children if applicable
  • identity evidence (passport or driving licence with photo)
  • an interview in line with Wakefield Council's procedures
  • check of professional qualifications
  • proof of the right to work in the UK

On appointment and at induction stage the following should take place:

  • safeguarding procedures are explained.
  • the Code of Conduct and this Safeguarding policy and procedure is signed and explained

4.2 Training and induction

All staff, including temporary and volunteers have regular safeguarding training appropriate to their role. In addition to safeguarding training commensurate with their role, Safeguarding Lead Officers will attend multi-agency Working Together to Safeguard Children, Prevent Awareness and Information Sharing and Data Protection (GDPR) training. Safeguarding Leads should also attend local authority Designated Safeguarding Lead training available via the Safeguarding Children Partnership. Safeguarding Lead Officers also attend relevant training to keep abreast of current threats and changes in legislation. Training is provided to employees on a continual basis as part of the safeguarding process.

The training requirements for service are:

  • all staff should complete safeguarding training appropriate to their role (Appendix 3)
  • all employees must read and understand the information contained in this document
  • ongoing internal training is provided as part of toolbox talks, this should take place annually
  • specified training for Safeguarding Lead Officers

4.3 Whistleblowing

Whistleblowing is the term used when a staff member passes on information concerning wrongdoing. It is good practice to create an open, transparent, and safe working environment where staff feel able to speak up. Wakefield Council operates a Whistleblowing Policy (Appendix 1) and takes seriously any allegations raised, whilst also offering support for anyone who feels worried that they might suffer at work due to raising concerns about individuals or the organisation in good faith. In addition, the NCPCC Whistleblowing Advice Line[7] offers free advice and support to professionals with concerns about how child protections issues are being dealt with in their own or another organisation. Whistle-blowers are given protection under the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998 (Appendix 1).

4.4 Position of Trust

Although most people who work or volunteer with children have their best interests at heart, there have been a number of examples and lessons learned where this has not been the case. All organisations that work with children have a responsibility to prevent anyone who is in a position of trust from abusing a child. In relation to safeguarding children, 'Position of Trust' is a legal term[8] which refers to certain roles where an adult has regular, direct contact with children, i.e., teachers, doctors or care workers. It is against the law for someone in a 'position of trust' to engage in sexual activity. Following the NSPCC Close the Loophole campaign, the Ministry of Justice has put forward the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill. Which is currently going through parliament, and it is fully expected it will be agreed. The proposed bill aims to expand the law in England and Wales to ensure that sports coaches and faith leaders will not be able to engage in sexual activity with 16- and 17-year-olds in their care, even if that child is over the age of consent (over 16). Whilst, staff and volunteers who work for Wakefield Council are not legally defined as in a 'position of trust' at this present moment (16/05/22) our staff are expected to conduct themselves in accordance with our Code of Conduct. This states that you must at all times ensure that there are clear boundaries between personal and professional relationships with clients and service users. Any behaviour or actions which involve secrecy or inappropriate behaviour with a child or young person will almost certainly constitute serious misconduct. If you think that a young person's behaviour indicates them seeking to develop or engage in an inappropriate relationship with you (e.g. Repeated social media requests), immediately bring this to the attention of your line manager.

4.5 Social Media

Due to the increase personal use of social media and social networking sites, employees should be aware of the impact of their personal use upon their professional standing. In practice, anything posted on the internet will be there forever and is no longer in your control. Therefore, employees and volunteers must keep all professional work completely separate from their private social media accounts. Employees and volunteers do not accept friendship requests on social networking or messaging sites from children, young people (or their parents) or vulnerable adult service users.

4.6 Allegations against employees or volunteers

Allegations against staff or volunteers, as described in role of the LADO (p7) should be reported to the Safeguarding Lead Officer immediately. It is the role of the Safeguarding Lead Officer to report allegations about employees and volunteers, to the LADO. The LADO should be notified as soon as is possible of any allegations raised.

If a site receives an allegation about an employee or volunteer which falls within the remit of the LADO, the Site Manager must be informed immediately. The Site Manager must ensure that any children/adults at risk are in no immediate danger and report the allegation to the Safeguarding Lead Officer.

4.7 Clubs and Hirers of Wakefield Council's Sport and Health Improvement Facilities

Wakefield Council enables customers to hire facilities for a variety of reasons including sports halls for team sports, or for instructors to teach private classes e.g., Karate, gymnastics etc. It is a condition of hire that these hirers must have in place safeguarding arrangements. Hirers must also ensure that there is always an adult over the age of 18 physically on-site during classes or activities who it is expected will act as the safeguarding lead for their organisation and will take full responsibility in liaising with the local authorities in the event of a safeguarding incident. As a minimum hirers are required to sign up and adhere to this policy and they are expected to develop their own safeguarding policy and procedures. Support can be provided to clubs as required.

Wakefield Council's facilities are home to a number of sports clubs. There is a requirement as part of the agreement ('conditions of hire') with external clubs that, where any safeguarding matter arises, the club must inform the Site Manager immediately. Safeguarding matters will be dealt with in line with this policy.

Where the club is bound by their National Governing Body to comply with their own safeguarding procedures, the person dealing with the matter must inform the Safeguarding Lead Officer. The officer will review the outcome and decide if the response and actions taken by the club adequately adhered to safeguarding procedures in this policy. The service will, where necessary, report to National Governing Bodies safeguarding complaints concerning clubs using facilities.

The Safeguarding Lead Officer will require any club carrying out an investigation to share the outcome and findings of that investigation with them. The Sport & Health Improvement Service also reserves the right to carry out relevant investigations and follow-up actions, as appropriate.

If an individual or club fails to co-operate with an official investigation into a specific safeguarding issue, their hire arrangement may be revoked with immediate effect.

4.8 Unsupervised children

Children under the age 11 years should be accompanied by a responsible adult when visiting a leisure facility according to the Leisure Admissions Policy[9]

If a child is found under the age of 11 years unaccompanied staff should:

  • ask the child if they are waiting to be collected. It is good practice for a child to be approached by two staff members if possible so that one can go and get help if required while the other stays with the child.
  • ask if the child's parent/ carer/responsible adult (16 years and over) is in the facility
  • attempt to contact the parent/carer
  • avoid being alone with the child and remain in public view
  • make a clear record of any response from the parent/carer
  • if all attempts to contact parents fail phone Social Care Direct on 0345 8503503. If they are unavailable call the Police.
  • encourage the child to remain in the building until somebody collects them
  • if the child refuses to stay in the building, try to persuade them to stay but do not force them! Dial 0345 8503503 for further advice
  • do not attempt to physically restrain the child
  • under no circumstances take the child home or offer them a lift anywhere
  • complete a Safeguarding Incident Report Form (Appendix 4)

5.0 Definitions and further information

To ensure that children, young people, and adults at risk are protected from harm, we need to understand what types of behaviour constitute abuse and neglect. We also need to have an awareness of current issues in relation to safeguarding. The following section provides further information about safeguarding and current/emerging threats.

Abuse is a form of maltreatment and an individual or group can cause abuse by inflicting harm, or by failing to act to prevent harm. It is important to be aware that abuse can take place outside the home in a community setting by those either known or unknown to individuals. Abuse can take place wholly online, or technology may be used to facilitate offline abuse. Children and young people can be abused by an adult or adults or another child or children. Some individuals will actively seek employment or voluntary work with children, young people or adults at risk in order to harm them.

5.1 Categories of Child Abuse (as defined by legislation)

The Children Act 1989 tells us that there are 4 categories of child abuse: Physical abuse, Emotional abuse, Sexual abuse and Neglect.

Physical Abuse - Physical abuse happens when a child, young person is deliberately hurt, causing injuries such as cuts, bruises, burns and broken bones. It can involve hitting, kicking, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning or suffocating. Physical harm may also be caused when a parent or carer fabricates the symptoms of, or deliberately induces illness in a child, this is referred to as Fabricated or Induced Illness (formerly Munchausen's Syndrome by Proxy) or 'perplexing presentations.'

  • emotional/Psychological Abuse
    • the persistent emotional maltreatment of a child such as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on the child's emotional development
    • it may involve conveying to a child that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate, or valued only insofar as they meet the needs of another person
    • it may include not giving the child opportunities to express their views, deliberately silencing them or 'making fun' of what they say or how they communicate

  • it may feature age or developmentally inappropriate expectations being imposed on children
    • these may include interactions that are beyond a child's developmental capability, as well as overprotection and limitation of exploration and learning, or preventing the child participating in normal social interaction
    • it may involve seeing or hearing the ill-treatment of another. It may involve serious bullying (including cyberbullying), causing children frequently to feel frightened or in danger, or the exploitation or corruption of children
    • some level of emotional abuse is involved in all types of maltreatment of a child, though it may occur alone

  • sexual Abuse
    • involves forcing or enticing a child or young person to take part in sexual activities, not necessarily involving a high level of violence, whether the child is aware of what is happening
    • the activities may involve physical contact, including assault by penetration (for example, rape or oral sex) or non-penetrative acts such as masturbation, kissing, rubbing and touching outside of clothing
    • they may also include non-contact activities, such as involving children in looking at, or in the production of, sexual images, watching sexual activities, encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways, or grooming a child in preparation for abuse
    • sexual abuse can take place online, and technology can be used to facilitate offline abuse
    • sexual abuse is not solely perpetrated by adult males
    • women can also commit acts of sexual abuse, as can other children

  • neglect
    • the persistent failure to meet a child's basic physical and/or psychological needs, likely to result in the serious impairment of the child's health or development
    • neglect may occur during pregnancy as a result of maternal substance abuse
    • once a child is born, neglect may involve a parent or carer failing to:
      • a. provide adequate food, clothing and shelter (including exclusion from home or abandonment)
      • b. protect a child from physical and emotional harm or danger
      • c. ensure adequate supervision (including the use of inadequate caregivers)
      • d. ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment
    • it may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to, a child's basic emotional needs

5.2 Other Types of Abuse

In addition to the recognised categories of abuse all employees and volunteers should be familiar with the following information. These are all types of abuse and may be happening at any time in community settings. Remember always seek advice if you are concerned about something you hear or witness.

  • extremism
    • everyone working with children, young people and adults at risk must uphold the Prevent duty, the objective is to protect them from radicalisation and extremism
    • extremism goes beyond terrorism and includes people who target the vulnerable – including the young – by seeking to sow division between communities on the basis of race, faith or denomination; justify discrimination towards women and girls; persuade others that minorities are inferior; or argue against the primacy of democracy and the rule of law in our society
    • extremism is defined in the Counter Extremism Strategy 2015 as the vocal or active opposition to our fundamental values, including the rule of law, individual liberty and the mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs.
    • we also regard calls for the death of members of our armed forces as extremist

  • Child Sexual Exploitation
    • child sexual exploitation is a form of child sexual abuse. It occurs where an individual or group takes advantage of an imbalance of power to coerce, manipulate or deceive a child or young person under the age of 18 into sexual activity:
      • (a) in exchange for something the victim needs or wants, and, or;
      • (b) for the financial advantage or increased status of the perpetrator or facilitator
    • the victim may have been sexually exploited even if the sexual activity appears consensual
    • Child sexual exploitation does not always involve physical contact; it can also occur through the use of technology
    • If you suspect a child to be at risk of child sexual exploitation you should immediately inform the Safeguarding Lead Officer who will refer details to the Police and Children's Social Care
    • Key signs to look out for in your daily work may include: Change in behaviour - becoming aggressive and disruptive or quiet and withdrawn / Unexplained gifts or new possessions such as clothes, jewellery, mobile Phones or money that can't be accounted for / Appearing to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol / Being picked up or dropped off in cars by unknown adults

A significantly older 'boyfriend' or 'friend' or lots of new friends / A child or young person who appears to be afraid around the adults they are with:

  • Up-skirting
    • up-skirting is a term used to describe the act of taking a sexually intrusive photograph up someone's skirt without their permission
    • this is a criminal offence, and it is our responsibility to report any instances of this happening on our sites to the Police.

  • Contextual Safeguarding
    • This is an approach to understanding and responding to, young people's experiences of significant harm beyond their families
    • it recognises that the different relationships that young people form in their neighbourhoods, schools and online can feature violence and abuse
    • parents and carers have little influence over these contexts, and young people's experiences of extra-familial abuse can undermine the parent-child relationships
    • contextual safeguarding expands the objectives of child protection systems in recognition that young people are vulnerable to abuse in a range of social contexts

  • Child Criminal Exploitation (CCE)/County Lines As set out in the Serious Violence Strategy, published by the Home Office, CCE is where an individual or group takes advantage of an imbalance of power to coerce, control, manipulate or deceive a child or young person under the age of 18 into any criminal activity
    • (a) in exchange for something the victim needs or wants, and/or
    • (b) for the financial or other advantage of the perpetrator or facilitator and/or;
    • (c) through violence or the threat of violence. The victim may have been criminally exploited even if the activity appears consensual
  • Child criminal exploitation does not always involve physical contact; it can also occur through the use of technology
  • CCE is when children are exploited by criminals, there is always a power imbalance and children, young people or adults at risk are used by individuals or gangs to take part in criminal activity, this can include drug running, stealing etc. Violence, coercion and intimidation are common
  • County lines is a police term for urban gangs supplying drugs to suburban areas, market and coastal towns using dedicated mobile phone lines or "deal lines"
  • It involves CCE, as gangs use children, young people and adults at risk to move drugs and money or store them in their homes
  • Gangs will establish a base in the market location, often taking over the homes by force or coercion of local adults at risk, or vulnerable young people who are living independently, in order to store their drugs, or as a place to prepare and take drugs/or undertake other kinds of criminal activity
  • In practice this is referred to as "cuckooing". County lines is a major issue involving drugs, violence, gangs, safeguarding, criminal and sexual exploitation, modern slavery, and missing persons
  • The response to tackle this issue involves the Police, the National Crime Agency, a wide range of Government departments, local government agencies including ourselves and the voluntary and community sector (VCS) organisations
  • County lines activity and the associated violence, drug dealing, and exploitation have a devastating impact on children, young people, adults at risk and local communities

5.3 Flowchart for reporting safeguarding concerns

Employees and volunteers should be confident in identifying children, young people, and adults at risk from any of these issues and report concerns to the Safeguarding Lead Officer, following the procedure outlined below.

A. If you have concerns about the safety or welfare of a child/adult at risk. Seek advice from the Safeguarding Lead Officer (If a child/adult at risk is in immediate danger call 999)

B. If a child/adult at risk makes a disclosure. Stay calm, provide reassurance, and listen carefully, record information using a Safeguarding Incident Report Form (Appendix 3)

C. Report immediately to your Line Manager or the designated Safeguarding Lead Officer. The designated Safeguarding Lead

D. Officer (SLO) is Phil Gibson – Tel: 07769 282291 Additional SLOs: Kov Bahadori – Tel: 07767 354018 and Liz Blenkinsop – Tel: 077111 53722

E. The designated Safeguarding Lead Officer will decide the next action and if necessary, make a referral to Children's Social Care or the LADO

F. You will receive an update regarding the action that has been taken.

G. If you are not happy with the response you have received from the Designated Safeguarding Lead Officer, or you feel you still have concerns, contact Social Care Direct or Children's Social Care on 0345 8503 503

Alongside awareness of the wider issues in relation to safeguarding, it is our responsibility to be alert to signs of abuse and to know what constitutes good practice and practice to be avoided in our workplace. The following section is not exhaustive but provides an overview of factors to consider in relation to safeguarding.

5.4 Children's and Adults Mental Health

We all have mental health, just like we all have physical health. It is now recognised that 1 in 6 children aged between 6 and 16 years old has a probable mental health disorder but not all children have a diagnosis. In adults it is estimated that one in four adults has a mental health disorder but again not all adults will have been medically diagnosed so may not be receiving the treatment they need.

Our staff must be alert to spot the signs of a young person or adult in emotional distress or crisis. You must always get help from a mental health first aider or your safeguarding lead if you see someone self-harming, or if you are told about this happening.

You must also get help immediately if someone tells you that they are feeling suicidal. This type of situation is an emergency and can be very upsetting to deal with, but you do not have to deal with it alone. Please ask for help from your manager straight away or dial 999 if there is a risk to life and ask for the police. If you need help yourself, remember #ITSOKAYTOTALK and you can seek advice from your line manager or if you prefer one of the lines below will help you.

In Wakefield our service to support children and young people's wellbeing and mental health is called CAMHS The service is available.

Monday to Friday, 9am – 5pm / Wakefield CAMHS SPA team:
Telephone 01977 735865.

Monday to Sunday, 9:00am – 8:00pm / For urgent support that cannot wait until the next day, you can contact the CAMHS ReACH team (previously crisis team), on: 01977 735865.

Outside these hours please contact your out of hours GP (by calling your practice number as usual) or NHS 111.

You should only contact the emergency service on 999 or go to your nearest A&E if:

Someone's life is at risk – for example, they have seriously injured themselves or taken an overdose or You do not feel you can keep yourself or someone else safe.

If you are worried about an adult the single point of access SPA team should also be contacted. Telephone: 01924 316 900 Address: Drury Lane Health and Wellbeing Centre, Drury Lane, Wakefield, WF1 2TE

The organisation Papyrus offer a Hopeline for anyone under the age of 35 years to talk if they are suicidal. The Hopeline phone number is 0800 0684141

The Samaritans offer support to all. Their telephone number is 116 123

Remember to always ask for help if you are unsure what to do and you are worried about someone

If you have been upset by a situation where you have needed to give someone else support remember that support is available for you too. The council has excellent links for support for you – just ask to speak to your manager as soon as possible and remember #ITSOKAYTOTALK

5.5 Further Guidelines and Information

There are 10 types of adult abuse that we need to be alert to, these are:

Physical abuse, including Assault, Hitting, Slapping, Pushing, Misuse of medication, Restraint, inappropriate physical sanctions.

Sexual abuse, including Rape, Indecent exposure, Sexual harassment, Inappropriate looking or touching, Sexual teasing or innuendo, Sexual photography, Subjection to pornography or witnessing sexual acts, Indecent exposure, Sexual assault, Sexual acts to which the adult has not consented or was pressured into consenting.

Psychological abuse, including Emotional abuse, Threats of harm or Abandonment, Deprivation of contact, Humiliation, Blaming, Controlling, Intimidation, Coercion, Harassment, Verbal abuse, Cyberbullying, Isolation, Unreasonable and Unjustified withdrawal of services or supportive networks.

Domestic Abuse - Domestic violence and abuse is classified as any incident of threatening behaviours, violence or abuse between anyone aged 16 or over who are, or have been in a relationship together, or between family members regardless of gender or sexuality. As well as physical acts, i.e., hitting, beating etc. domestic abuse also includes emotional abuse, forced marriage and so-called "honour crimes". Domestic abuse can encompass a wide range of behaviours and may be a single incident or a pattern of incidents.

Domestic abuse is not limited to physical acts of violence or threatening behaviour, and can include emotional, psychological, controlling or coercive behaviour, sexual and/or economic abuse. Types of domestic abuse include intimate partner violence, abuse by family members, teenage relationship abuse and adolescent to parent violence. Anyone can be a victim of domestic abuse, regardless of gender, age, ethnicity, socio-economic status, sexuality or background and domestic abuse can take place inside or outside the home

Financial Abuse - Financial abuse includes theft, fraud, internet scamming, exploitation, coercion in relation to an adult's financial affairs or arrangements, or the misuse or misappropriation of property, possessions, or benefits. "Financial abuse is the main form of abuse investigated by the Office of the Public Guardian both amongst adults and children at risk. Financial recorded abuse can occur in isolation, but as research has shown, where there are other forms of abuse, there is likely to be financial abuse occurring"

Modern Slavery encompasses: Slavery, Human Trafficking, Forced Labour and Domestic Servitude. Modern slavery is illegal exploitation of people for personal/commercial gain. Victims are trapped in servitude they were deceived or coerced into.

Neglect and acts of omission, including Ignoring Medical, Emotional, or Physical Care needs. Failure to provide Access to Appropriate Health, Care and Support or Educational Services. The withholding of the necessities of life, such as Medication, Adequate Nutrition and Heating.

Self-neglect - This covers a wide range of behaviour neglecting to care for one's personal hygiene, health or surroundings and includes behaviour such as Hoarding.

Discriminatory Abuse Including forms of: Harassment, Slurs or Similar treatment: Because of Race, Gender and Gender Identity, Age, Disability, Sexual Orientation, Religion.

Organisational Abuse - Organisational abuse includes neglect or poor care practice within an institution or specific care setting, i.e., hospital or in relation to care provided in one's own home. This can range from one-off incidents to ongoing ill treatment, be it through neglect or poor professional practice.

Early intervention

For a child that needs help, everyday counts. Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018 specifies that it is the responsibility of everybody to be alert to the needs of children and help them obtain any relevant support as early as possible. In the Wakefield district there are 9 Family Early Help Hubs which offer support to families, children, and young people.

Employees and volunteers need to be alert to the potential additional needs of a child who:

  • is disabled and has specific additional needs
  • has special educational needs (SEND)
  • is a young carer
  • is showing signs of engaging in anti-social or criminal behavior
  • is living in family circumstances that present challenges for the child, i.e. substance abuse, adult mental health, domestic violence; and/or is showing early signs of abuse and/or neglect

Signs of abuse

Victims of abuse often do not speak out about what they are experiencing. It is the responsibility of everybody to be vigilant and aware of the signs and indicators of abuse to ensure the best possible chances of helping a child. It is important that all employees and volunteers are alert to signs of abuse.

A child, young person or adult at risk who is being abused or neglected may display some the following signs (this is not a checklist):

  • have bruises, burns, fractures or other injuries which do not have a plausible explanation
  • show signs of pain or discomfort
  • be wary of physical contact
  • keep arms and legs covered (even in warm weather)
  • be concerned about changing for sports
  • challenge authority, have outbursts of anger
  • display a change in usual behaviour, i.e., quiet to aggressive, happy-go-lucky to withdrawn
  • be reckless with regard to their own or other's safety
  • look unkempt and uncared for
  • wear inappropriate or inadequate clothing
  • display sexual behavior that is either inappropriate or advanced for their age
  • have unexplained gifts or are secretive with phones etc.
  • be involved in, or particularly knowledgeable about alcohol and drugs
  • be constantly tired or preoccupied
  • seem afraid of parents or carers
  • show signs of not wanting to go home
  • have a carer who is unwilling to allow access to the individual without them present
  • self-harm, i.e., by cutting or burning themselves
  • have low self esteem

Further guidelines for working with children, young people and adults at risk

It may sometimes be necessary for employees or volunteers to do things of a personal nature for children, particularly if they are young or disabled. These tasks should be only carried out with the consent and full understanding of parents and children involved. There is a need to be responsive to a person's reactions, if the person is fully dependent on you, talk with him/her about what you are doing and ask or give choices where possible. This is particularly so if you are involved in any dressing or undressing of outer clothing, or where there is physical contact, lifting or assisting a child to carry out particular activities. Avoid taking on the tasks for which you are not properly trained.

All employees and volunteers who work for the Sport and Health Improvement Service may have regular contact with children, young people and adults at risk and be an important link in identifying cases where a child needs protection. The Sport and Health Improvement Service expects all employees and volunteers to behave appropriately towards children, young people, and adults at risk at all times and adhere to the safeguarding guidelines laid out in this policy.

Appropriate behaviour means:

  • always working in an open environment - avoiding instances where you are alone or unobserved with a child thus creating and encouraging An open environment for all where there are no secrets
  • treating everybody fairly with respect and dignity regardless of their age, culture, disability, gender, language, ethnic origin, religious belief or sexual identity
  • always putting the welfare of children and adults at risk at the forefront of all activities
  • always maintain an appropriate distance, ask permission before physical contact, i.e., administering first aid
  • you must not have an intimate relationship with a young person or adult at risk, regardless of their age
  • not using personal accounts on social networking sites to communicate with individuals whom you deal with professionally
  • not using personal mobile phones or giving out your mobile numbers to individuals whom you deal with professionally
  • building relationships based on mutual trust which empower children to share in the decision-making process
  • where any form of manual/physical support is required, it should be provided openly and according to guidelines provided by the appropriate
  • national Governing Body of sport. The parent/guardian of the child should always be consulted, and their agreement gained
  • if groups have to be supervised in the changing rooms, parents/teachers/coaches/officials should work in pairs
  • personal mobile phones should never be taken into a changing room nor should hi – tech smartwatches that are capable of recording or taking photographs
  • anyone supervising changing rooms should be DBS checked
  • a written record of any injury that occurs and details of any treatment given should also be recorded and kept in every circumstance

You should never:

  • spend excessive amounts of time alone with children, young people or adults at risk
  • engage in rough, physical or sexually provocative games
  • allow or engage in any form of inappropriate touching
  • allow children and young people to use inappropriate language unchallenged
  • make sexually suggestive comments to a child, young person or adult at risk, even if you deem these to be made in a sense of fun
  • reduce anyone to tears as a form of control – this Is completely unacceptable, and will be dealt with as a disciplinary matter.
  • allow allegations made by anyone, against either an employee, volunteer, or about a safeguarding concern in relation to a child, young person or adult at risk to be unrecorded or not acted upon
  • invite or allow children, young people or adults at risk to stay with you or visit your home or socialise with them

Appendix 2

Appendix 3

Training guidance for all Sport and Health Improvement Service employees and volunteers available on the WSCP website.

Safeguarding Lead Officers – suggested training

  • Working Together – A Shared Responsibility (full day, every 2 years)
  • Child Sexual Exploitation
  • Children & Young People Living with Domestic Violence & Abuse
  • County Lines – What is it?
  • Disguised Compliance & the Role of Professional Curiosity
  • Contributing to Child Protection Conference & Core Groups
  • Forced Marriages (FM) & Honour Based Abuse (HBA)
  • Future in Mind an introduction……CAMHS training around various Mental Health issues
  • Hate Crime
  • Investigation of Abusive Images
  • Managing Allegations Against Staff
  • Neglect Including the Wakefield Neglect Toolkit
  • Safeguarding the Disabled Child
  • Safer Recruitment
  • Seen & Heard
  • Social Gaming & Gambling – is it an issue for C&YP?
  • Sexual Development in Children & Adolescents
  • Train the Trainer
  • Technology & Children – Potential Issues Affecting Young People Online

The above list is not exhaustive, but the courses deliver skills and knowledge relevant to the Safeguarding Lead Officer role.

All Staff Training 

  • Working Together – Basic Awareness (half day, all staff)
  • Safeguarding Children Level 2
  • Other courses are available from WSCP training department, check website for any relevant to your role
  • All Safeguarding Lead Officers, employees and volunteers should do PREVENT awareness, level of training will depend on role.
  • Safeguarding Lead Officers – 2 hours online (to include Channel reporting)
  • All staff – awareness of PREVENT and how to report Prevent & Counter Terrorism Awareness (WSCP Training)

Appendix 4

Safeguarding Incident Report Form - Any concerns regarding the welfare of a child/adult at risk must be reported: Data Protection Statement:  Information will only be shared where and to whom necessary and in relation to incidences of a safeguarding nature. The Sport and Health Improvement Safeguarding Policy (including this form) is fully compliant with the Wakefield Council data protection policy in line with the Data Protection Act (1998).  Full details of this statement are available on our data protection page here.


  2. Working together to safeguard children - GOV.UK (





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