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Recommendations - Child protection in religious organisations and settings

These recommendations were made in the Child protection in religious organisations and settings investigation report.

The Inquiry published this report and its recommendations on 2 September 2021 and will contact institutions to whom recommendations are addressed in line with the Inquiry's agreed process for monitoring recommendations. Unless otherwise stated, institutions should publish their responses within six months of the relevant recommendations being published.

Child protection policy, procedures and training

Recommendations

All religious organisations should have a child protection policy and supporting procedures, which should include advice and guidance on responding to disclosures of abuse and the needs of victims and survivors. The policy and procedures should be updated regularly, with professional child protection advice, and all organisations should have regular compulsory training for those in leadership positions and those who work with children and young people.

Responses

On 2 September 2021, the Baptist Union of Great Britain said it was working to find ways to gather more data on safeguarding incidents and concerns in its churches, recognising the challenges of this in a non-hierarchical movement. It said it will continue to work with its churches, associations and colleges to gather and analyse this data which will be used to provide more targeted support for those who are victims of abuse in church and community settings and to prioritise safeguarding resources for its churches.

On 2 September 2021, the Methodist Church in Great Britain stated that it will examine its child protection policy, along with the procedures and training, as part of its ongoing cycle of learning and review to see what changes might be needed in light of the Inquiry’s report.

On 2 September 2021, the Muslim Council of Britain stated that it “is committed to providing resources and support for its affiliated organisations, and to sharing good practice already out there, to foster safe and nurturing environments for children in religious settings.”

On 2 September 2021, the Quakers in Britain stated that the Inquiry has prompted them to make improvements, such as creating a new national case management database. The Quakers in Britain now work more closely with local Quaker groups to record and share information appropriately.

On 2 September 2021, the United Reformed Church (URC) stated that it has robust policies and procedures in place to ensure the welfare and protection of all who attend church and who use its premises, and that it will continue to make sure that safeguarding remains a priority.

On 6 October 2021, the Faith Communities Forum of the Inter Faith Network for the UK stated that its member organisations are committed to use learning to ensure that all their faith leaders and lay leaders are trained, aware and committed to best practice, and that all their community places are safe places for the young and for any who are vulnerable or potentially vulnerable.

Legislation on the definition of full-time education and unregistered educational institutions providing full-time education

Recommendations

The government should introduce legislation to:

  • change the definition of full-time education, and to bring any setting that is the pupil’s primary place of education within the scope of the definition of a registered educational setting; and
  • provide the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Ofsted) with sufficient powers to examine the quality of child protection when it undertakes inspections of suspected unregistered institutions.

Responses

The Inquiry has not yet received any response to this recommendation.

Recommendations process

You can find out about our process for monitoring responses by visiting our web page.

Child protection in religious organisations and settings investigation report

View the Inquiry's Child protection in religious organisations and settings investigation report in its entirety.

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