Global Mediation Safeguarding Policy
Global Mediation is fully committed to safeguarding the welfare of all children, young people and vulnerable adults, by taking all reasonable steps to protect them from physical, sexual, or emotional abuse or neglect. Mediators and staff in contact with children, young people and their families have the requisite knowledge and skills to carry out their jobs safely and effectively.
We ensure that all mediators, staff, including freelance, contracted staff and/or associates are aware of the requirements within our safeguarding policy and of their responsibility to share information in order to safeguard children. We ensure that all staff members are confident about what they can and should do under law, including how to obtain consent to share information and when information can be shared without consent. All staff members and mediators are required to complete the NSPCC online training in child protection and safeguarding.
The Department for Education’s “Working Together to Safeguard Children” defines safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people as:
- protecting children from maltreatment;
- preventing impairment of children’s health or development;
- ensuring that children are growing up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care;
- and undertaking that role so as to enable those children to have optimum life chances and enter adulthood successfully.
Section 17: Child in Need
A child in need, under the Children Act (1989), Section 17 is considered to be in need if:
- He or she is unlikely to achieve or maintain or to have the opportunity to achieve or maintain a reasonable standard of health or development without provision or services from the Local Authority;
- His or her health or development is likely to be significantly impaired, or further impaired, without the provision of such services; or
- He or she is a disabled child
Section 47: Child at Risk of Significant Harm/In Need of Protection places a statutory duty on the local authority:
Where a local authority have reasonable cause to suspect that a child who lives, or is found, in their area is suffering, or is likely to suffer, significant harm, the authority shall make, or cause to be made, such enquiries as they consider necessary to enable them to decide whether they should take any action to safeguard or promote the child’s welfare.
- Harm means ill-treatment or the impairment of health or development, including, for example, impairment of health or development including, for example impairment suffered from seeing or hearing the ill-treatment of another
- Development means physical, intellectual, emotional, social or behavioural development
- Health means physical or mental health
- Ill treatment includes physical and sexual abuse and forms of ill treatments which are not physical.
Definition of ‘Paramount’ as per NSPCC guidelines: ‘The child’s welfare is paramount — the most important consideration’ .
Child protection is a part of safeguarding and promoting welfare.
This refers to the activity that is undertaken to protect specific children who are suffering, or are at risk of suffering significant harm.
This document applies to children and young people below the age of twenty-five and vulnerable adults.
The term ‘children’ will be used throughout the policy to apply to children and young people below the age of twenty-five and vulnerable adults.
Global Mediation is fully committed to this policy for safeguarding the welfare of all children and young people, by taking all reasonable steps to protect them from physical, sexual, or emotional abuse or neglect.
2.2 This document outlines child protection policy and procedures.
It is not a comprehensive ‘how to’ guide in child protection practice but relates specifically to the role of all those involved in working directly or indirectly with children in child protection practice, i.e. activity undertaken to protect specific children who are suffering or are at risk of suffering significant harm.
Global Mediation has a responsibility to work with others to safeguard and promote children’s welfare. Mediators and staff may have varying degrees of contact with children and young people. It is essential that mediators and staff in contact with children, young people and their families have the requisite knowledge and skills to carry out their jobs safely and effectively. All mediators and staff have a responsibility to ensure the safety of children with whom they work.
2.3 This document outlines our commitment to the protection of children and aims to:
- Raise awareness of the need to protect children and young people and reduce risks to them;
- Ensure that when abuse is suspected or disclosed, it is clear what action must be taken.
We ensure that all mediators, staff, including freelance, contracted staff and/or associates are aware of the requirements within this policy. It is the responsibility of these groups to ensure that the personnel they are responsible for are aware of and understand the procedures and have levels of knowledge and skills commensurate to the level and nature of their direct involvement with children and young people.
2.4 We work within the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and believe that:
- All children have the right to be protected;
- All children should be listened to and their views taken seriously;
- Children’s needs should be looked at holistically and should not be defined solely in terms of their abuse;
- All interventions must be child-centred;
- To effectively protect children, professionals must identify and work with safe and protective adults within children’s families and communities;
- Professionals need to be aware of how issues of race, gender, disability, culture, sexuality and age impact on an individual’s life experiences;
- Professionals need to be aware of how issues of race, gender, disability, culture, sexuality and age impact on their understanding of and response to keeping children safe;
- Joint working between agencies and disciplines is essential for the protection of children.
In addition, Global Mediation is committed to extending our safeguarding duties to adults.
2.5 The following individuals will be required to read and sign all company policies prior to undertaking any work or role relating to Global Mediation:
- Any mediator or member of staff employed by Global Mediation;
- Any agent acting on behalf of Global Mediation in a capacity that may bring them into contact with children and young people;
- All volunteers and students aged 16 and over.
3. Definitions of abuse
Abuse and neglect are forms of maltreatment of a child. An individual may abuse or neglect a child by inflicting harm or failing to act to prevent harm. Neglect or abuse, physically, emotionally or sexually, can have major long-term effects on all aspects of a child’s health, development and wellbeing. Sustained abuse is likely to have a deep impact on the child’s self-image and self-esteem, and on his or her future life. It may be caused by other children/young people or adults.
Harm may occur intentionally or unintentionally. The definitions of harm outlined in ‘Working Together 2010’ are used to determine whether a child needs a child protection plan.
See also the ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education Act 2018’ about working together and providing statutory guidance for schools and colleges.
3.1 Physical abuse
Physical abuse may involve hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning or scalding, drowning, suffocating, or otherwise causing physical harm to a child. Physical harm may also be caused when a parent or caregiver fabricates the symptoms of, or deliberately induces illness in a child.
Possible Indicators of Abuse:
- Bruising consistent with physical or sexual assault
- Reports from reliable sources that a child has been seen in localities (hot spots) where those involved in harbouring, grooming and abusing children frequent
- Being contacted by unknown adults (male or female) in person/mobile phone, text, email/chat rooms
- Development of relationships, usually with someone older, who encourages dependence , loyalty and isolation from safe relationships and controls the relationship by manipulation, violence and threats
- Persistent absconding or late return with no plausible explanation
- Being picked up by unauthorized adults in cars
- Returning from absconding looking well cared for, despite having no known base
- Estranged from family
- Acquisition of money or possessions without plausible explanation
- An adult loitering outside the home to meet the child
- Self-harming/offending behaviour
- Alcohol and other drug misuse
- Persistent truanting from school
- A young person spending long periods of time in ‘chat rooms’/given access to inappropriate web sites
- Sexually transmitted diseases and/or unplanned pregnancy
- Low self-esteem/self-worth
- Young gay/bisexual male exploring sexuality in unsupported way (TAKEN FROM NSPCC)
3.2 Emotional Abuse
Emotional abuse is the persistent emotional maltreatment of a child so as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on the child’s emotional development. Some level of emotional abuse is involved in all types of maltreatment of a child, though it may occur alone.
Parents/caregivers of children with multiple needs may find it difficult to ensure that the full range of their needs, including their emotional needs, is met. It may be hard to include such children in everyday activities alongside other family members, but not to include them may be harmful.
3.3 Sexual abuse
Sexual abuse involves forcing or enticing a child or young person into sexual activities, including prostitution, whether or not the child is aware of what is happening. They may include non-contact activities, such as involving children in looking at, or in the production of sexual online or printed images, watching sexual activities, or encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways.
Child sexual exploitation is a type of sexual abuse, in which children are sexually exploited for money, power or status. Children or young people may be tricked into believing they’re in a loving consensual relationship. They may be invited to attend parties where alcohol and drugs are exposed or they may be groomed online. See above for definitions of abuse.
Some children and young people are trafficked into or within the UK for the purpose of sexual exploitation. Sexual exploitation can also happen to young people in gangs. Child sexual exploitation can also occur through the use of technology without the child’s immediate recognition – eg – posting sexual images on social media / internet / mobiles without immediate payment or gain.
Key indicators for sexual abuse include the following:
- Physical contact including assault by penetration
- (rape, oral sex).
- Non penetrative acts such as masturbation, kissing, rubbing and touching outside of clothing .
- 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 .
Neglect is 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 caregiver failing to:
- provide adequate food, clothing or shelter including exclusion from home or abandonment;
- protect a child from physical and emotional harm or danger;
- ensure adequate supervision including the use of responsible care-givers;
- ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment.
It may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to, a child’s basic emotional needs.
Radicalisation can mean different things to different people. It is a non-specific word and in the public arena, the term can be affected by the policy and politics of the time. In the government’s published Prevent Duty guidance (HM Government 2015), radicalisation refers to the process by which a person comes to support terrorism and extremist ideologies associated with terrorist groups.
Statistics are not available to indicate the number of children who are at serious risk of radicalisation. It can be assumed that more children will be at risk as the ongoing threat of international terrorist groups and domestic white extremist groups continue in the UK.
Children can be most vulnerable to radicalisation or extremist views during adolescence or early teen years. These children could be in direct risk of harm, neglect or may suffer emotional abuse. This can root from being involved in activities associated with risky behaviours or being from a household/community where they are exposed to extremist views or practices.
Practitioners who come into contact with suspected radicalised children should consider neglect or emotional maltreatment and not exclusively address the problems they present.
The following factors have been identified as possible contributors to a child or young person becoming radicalised:
- Influence from peers or charismatic individuals. This could be via the internet and the content may incite animosity and violence
- Exposure to counter-political movements, ideologies and unorthodox beliefs
- Exploring issues and ideas around their identity
- Rejection by peer, faith or social group and family
- Being part of a community which is socially excluded
- Experience of poverty or ill treatment of their faith/ethnic group in society
- Being dissatisfied with government foreign policy, international disputes and political views etc
- Exposure to gangs, social/criminal networks (including online), risky institutions
Every case for radicalisation is unique and is not dependent on the presence of one or more of the factors above. If you suspect a child or young person is being radicalised dial 999.
3.6 Female Genital Mutilations (FGM)
Female genital mutilation (FGM) is also known as female circumcision or female genital cutting, and in practising communities by local terms such as ‘tahor’ or ‘sunna.’ It is a form of child abuse and can have overwhelming physical and psychological consequences for girls and women.
Since 1985 it has been a serious criminal offence under the Prohibition of Female Circumcision Act to perform FGM or to assist a girl to perform FGM on herself. The Home Office identified girls from the following communities are most at risk; Somali, Kenyan, Sudanese, Sierra Leonean, Egyptian, Nigerian, Eritrean, Yemini, Kurdish and Indonesian (2014).
The following are factors and signs to look for:
- Coming from a community that is known to practise FGM
- Having a female family member who has been subjected to FGM
- A child being taken back to her family’s country of origin at the beginning of the summer This allows time for her to heal from the procedure before returning to the UK
- An older female relative visiting from the country of origin who performs FGM
- One should also be aware of girls who asked to be excused from PE or swimming lessons or girls who spend long periods of time in the bathroom (Khalifa, 2013)
If you are worried that a child may be at risk of FGM you can make an anonymous call to the NSPCC’s free 24-hour FGM helpline on 0800 028 3550 or contact our Safeguarding Officers Professor Irvine Gersch or Samihah Riaz on 0800 064 44 88.
Mandatory Reporting of Female Genital Mutilation
The FGM reporting duty is a legal duty provided for in the FGM Act 2003 (as amended by the Serious Crime Act 2015).
This legislation requires regulated health and social care professionals and teachers in England and Wales to make a report to the police where, in the course of their professional duties they are either:
- Informed by a girl under 18 that an act of FGM has been carried out on her
- Observe physical signs which appear to show that an act of FGM has been carried out on a girl under 18 and they have no reason to believe that the act was necessary for the girl’s physical or mental health or for purposes connected with labour or birth
- For the purposes of the duty, the relevant age is the girl’s age at the time of the disclosure/identification of FGM
This also applies to those regulated health and social care professionals and teachers in England and Wales, including those working in private education and healthcare.
Where regulated professionals/teachers working in private education or healthcare identify a case of FGM which falls within the mandatory reporting duty, they are required to make a report to the police, provided the case was discovered in the
course of their professional duties.
3.7 Abuse and Children with a Disability
Evidence available in the UK on the extent of abuse among children with a disability suggests that they are at increased risk of abuse, and that the presence of multiple disabilities appears to increase the risk of both abuse and neglect.
Disability may be defined as: “a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on one’s ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities” (The Disability Discrimination Act 2005).
Children with a disability may be especially vulnerable to abuse for a number of reasons:
- many disabled children are at an increased likelihood of being socially isolated with fewer outside contacts than non-disabled children;
- their dependency on parents and carers for practical assistance in daily living, including intimate personal care, increases their risk of exposure to abusive behaviour;
- they have impaired capacity to resist or avoid abuse;
- they may have speech, language and communication needs which may make it difficult to tell others what is happening;
- they often do not have access to someone they can trust to disclose that they have been abused and/or
- they are especially vulnerable to bullying and intimidation.
Where there are concerns about the welfare of a disabled child, they should be acted upon in accordance with these procedures in the same way as with any other child. The same thresholds for action and the same timescales apply. It would be unacceptable if poor standards of care were tolerated for disabled children that would not be tolerated for nondisabled children.
In any work with children and young people it is important to be clear about confidentiality. While personal information held by professionals and agencies is subject to a legal duty of confidence, and should not normally be disclosed without the subject’s consent, when there are concerns that a child is or may be at risk of significant harm, then the over-riding objective must be to safeguard that child and disclosure of information is imperative.
Confidentiality and child protection should be discussed with children and young people at the beginning of any piece of work, and reminders and information given from time to time, to ensure that they understand the processes and what responsibilities the staff members have. It is absolutely essential to be clear about the limits of confidentiality well before any such matter arises.
3.9 Allegations against staff
An allegation may relate to a member of staff (including a volunteer) who works with children who has:
- Behaved in a way that has or may have harmed a child
- Possibly committed a criminal offence against or related to a child
- Behaved towards a child or children in a way that indicates they may pose a risk of harm to children
All concerns should be referred to the designated Safeguarding Officer at Global Mediation.
Support for the child — In cases where a child may have suffered significant harm, or there may be a criminal prosecution, children’s services or the police where appropriate, should consider what support the child or children involved may need.
In the first instance the allegation will be managed by a senior manager, or where the senior manager is the subject of the allegation, the matter will be referred to the Ethics Committee.
Global Mediation will also ensure effective support for any employee.
Where it is clear that an investigation by the police or children’s social care services is unnecessary, the designated officer from the local authority should discuss the next steps with the case manager.
3.10 Adult abuse
The safeguarding duties apply to an adult who:
- Has needs for care and support
- Is at the risk of neglect and abuse
- As a result of those care needs is unable to protect themselves from the risk or experience of abuse and neglect (Care Act 2014)
Incidents of abuse may be one-off or multiple and affect one person or more. Professionals and others should look beyond single incidents or individuals to identify patterns of harm. Repeated instances of poor care may be an indication of more serious problems and of what is now described as organisational abuse. There are potential indicators of financial abuse which include; change in living conditions, lack of heating, clothing or food, inability to pay bills/unexplained shortage of money, unexplained loss/misplacement of financial documents, the recent addition of authorised signers on a client or donor’s signature card or sudden or unexpected changes in a will or other financial documents.
Anyone can carry out abuse or neglect, including: spouses/partners, other family members, neighbours, friends, acquaintances, local residents, people who deliberately exploit adults they perceive as vulnerable to abuse, paid staff or professionals and volunteers and strangers.
The Mental Capacity Act (2005) — an assessment to establish whether a person lacks capacity should take place whenever there is concern that an individual might lack the mental capacity to make a decision.
Processes for people who lack capacity should be different in significant respects from processes undertaken with people who have capacity (they can share information and give consent).
Sharing information between organisations about known or suspected risks may help to prevent abuse taking place as well as supporting a coordinated response (as with children).
All discussion about safeguarding adults should focus on respecting people’s rights and wellbeing, rather than taking an authoritarian or excessively protective approach towards abuse and protection.
If in doubt about consent and sharing information related to protecting an adult at risk, contact Professor Irvine Gersch or Samihah Riaz, Designated Safeguarding Officers.
Possible types of abuse which adults face according to ‘Care and Support Guidance (2014)’ include, physical abuse, domestic violence, sexual abuse, psychological abuse, financial or material abuse, modern slavery, discriminatory abuse, organisational abuse, neglect and acts of omission and self-neglect.
Global Mediation aims to comply fully with the Safer Recruitment procedures, with regard to its systems of selection and recruitment of its staff and mediators. Details of this policy are available from the Global Administrative team dealing with recruitment.
4. What to do if you are worried a child is being abused
4.1 If you come across a safeguarding concern of any type, please fill out the ‘Reporting and Recording Concerns Form’ as fully as possible. Please ensure that all dates and times are logged. Please see attached form.
Global Mediation has no powers to investigate child abuse. Nonetheless, Global Mediation’s mediators and staff have a duty to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and a responsibility to work closely and co-operatively with other agencies in order to achieve this.
If, in the process of your work, a child discloses to you that they are being abused you will need to tell them that you must report it to a Safeguarding Officer in the first instance.
It is important to remember that an allegation of child abuse or neglect may lead to a criminal investigation, so any concerns must be properly recorded and shared with a line manager.
4.2 When concerns should not be discussed with parents
There may be occasions when it is not appropriate to discuss child protection concerns with the parents of the child concerned. These include, but are not limited to :
- When to do so may expose the child to further risk of harm
- When advised not to do so by social services or Police
If you are unsure whether to discuss a particular case with a parent, please refer to Professor Irvine Gersch or Samihah Riaz.
Should there be any concerns about the Designated Safeguarding Officers, advice should be sought from the Ethics Committee. Any person subject to such concern will not be involved in any part of the committee’s deliberations.
4.3. Reporting a child protection issue
In the event of a situation in which you consider a child is at risk, you should contact Global Mediation’s Safeguarding Officers Professor Irvine Gersch and Samihah Riaz on 020 8441 1355.
4.4 If you think a child is in immediate, serious danger, call the police on 999.
4.5 If you witness something that is of severe concern, inform the parties at the time and tell them that you intend to pass on your concerns to Global You will need to contact Global Mediation on the day that you have referred this concern to the parties.
4.6 Global Mediation is committed to providing support to any member of staff who is affected by any part of the safeguarding process while making a referral.
4.7 Mediators should complete the REPORTING FORM attached to this policy document and return the completed form to the Safeguarding Officer on the same day as the incident leading to the concern.
Every individual has the right to make a referral to Social Care (particularly if they feel their concerns are not being taken seriously) but we would always advise you to consult with the Safeguarding Officer in the first instance.
4.8 Global Mediation has an Ethics Committee made up of the Financial Director, Jeff Lermer and two others, Linda Laurance and Samihah Any allegations regarding staff members should be referred to this committee. The company embraces a whistle blowing ethos in which no member of staff would be disadvantaged, discriminated against or suffer any material consequences should they make a referral or allegation to this Ethics Committee.
4.9 All records will be kept in the Global office and on the Global server until the young person reaches 25 years of age, potentially 31 years as is LA practice.
Also refer to the ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education Act 2018’ about working together and providing statutory guidance for schools and colleges.
4.10 Global Mediation also has a MIF (Management Information Form) system where every negative evaluation, staff administration error, or any type of complaint is logged, investigated and recorded on All relevant details are logged as well as the corrective and preventative actions taken. This is then signed off by a senior member of staff. Any concerns or issues against a member of the Ethics Committee can be passed on to Professor Irvine Gersch (Designated Safeguarding Officer).
5. Review of Policies
5.1 This policy and attached procedure document will be made available to every member of staff and mediators on an annual basis and will be placed on our website. The company will carry out an annual child protection audit and the policy will be reviewed in April each It will be discussed as a standing item at Directors meetings and Senior Leadership team agendas and at bi-annual Training Days.
5.2 A full up to date list of each local authority’s designated safeguarding officer and policy will be held in the Global office. Contact details for each Local Authority’s Children Services (including out of office contacts) can be found on each Local Authority’s local offer This is updated regularly, covering all the LAs with which we are contracted to provide a service.
5.3 This procedure will be reviewed annually or following the relevant change in law
|REVIEWED :||December 2019|
|BY :||Adam Gersch, Managing Director|
|UPDATED :||March 2020|
|NEXT REVIEW DUE :||April 2021|
The named officers for safeguarding and child protection are Professor Irvine Gersch and Samihah Riaz. Professor Irvine Gersch will also act as a ‘champion’ for safeguarding throughout the company.
Professor Irvine Gersch Safeguarding Officer 020 8441 1355, 07885 630 468
Samihah Riaz firstname.lastname@example.org 020 8441 1355
If out of hours (9am–5pm) please dial 0800 064 44 88 (24 hours) A safeguarding issue will be directed to either Professor Irvine Gersch or Samihah Riaz.
Reporting and Recording Concerns
|Name of child/young person|
|LA / CCG|
|Other information — preferred language, disability, ethnic origin, religion, preferred communication method (if known)|
|Details of concern — include where incident occurred, who witnessed it, date, time etc., physical appearance/behaviour of child|
|Has the child been spoken to? If so, what was said?|
|Who has been consulted in Global Mediation about this concern?|
|Action agreed by whom|
|LA / CCG|
Professional opinion should be set aside from factual observations and labelled as such.
The role of the Designated Officer within Global Mediation’s Safeguarding Policy while contracted with the Education Authority in Northern Ireland
Legal Background Information in Relation to Northern Ireland
In 1996 the Children (NI) Order 1995 came into force which legislates for children with regard to their care, upbringing and protection. One of the key principles in the childcare law is protection. The principle is that, children should be safe and should be protected by intervention if they are in danger.
Source: The Children (Northern Ireland) Order 1995
Safeguarding in Context
The term safeguarding is intended to be used in its widest sense, encompassing the full range of promotion, prevention and protection activity.
Effective safeguarding activity will:
• Promote the welfare for the child and young person;
• Prevent harm occurring through early identification of risk and appropriate, timely intervention; and
• Protect children and young people from harm when this is required.
This section provides definitions used within this Addendum to Global Mediation
Safeguarding and Child Protection
Safeguarding is more than child protection. Safeguarding begins with promotion and preventative activity which enables children and young people to grow up safely and securely in circumstances where their development and wellbeing is not adversely affected. It includes support to families and early intervention to meet the needs of children and continues through to child protection. Child protection refers specifically to the activity that is undertaken to protect individual children or young people who are suffering, or are likely to suffer significant harm.
The Children (Northern Ireland) Order 1995 defines a ‘child’ as a person under the age of 18.
Child in Need
Article 17 imposes a general duty on HSCTs to provide a range of services for children in need within their area and states a child shall be considered to be ‘in need’ if:
a) he is unlikely to achieve or maintain, or to have the opportunity of achieving or maintaining, a reasonable standard of health or development without the provision for him of services;
b) his health or development is likely to be significantly impaired, or further impaired, without the provision for him of such services; or
c) he is disabled.
‘Family’, in relation to such a child in need, includes any person who has parental responsibility for the child and any other person with whom he has been living. In determining whether a child or young person is in need, consideration must be given to:
a) what will happen to a child or young person’s development and health without services being provided; and
b) the likely effect the services will have on the child or young person’s standard of health and development.
Source: Co-operating to Safeguard Children and Young People in Northern Ireland (August 2017)
Child in Need of Protection
A child in need of protection is a child who is at risk of, or likely to suffer, significant harm which can be attributed to a person or persons or organisation, either by an act of commission or omission; or a child who has suffered or is suffering significant harm as defined in Article 50 of the Children Order.
Article 18 of the Children Order requires HSCTs:
a) to safeguard and promote the welfare of children within its area who are in need; and
b) so far as is consistent with that duty, to promote the upbringing of such children by their families,
by providing a range and level of care appropriate to those children’s needs. Fulfilling this
duty is a key part of preventative safeguarding.
Source: Co-operating to Safeguard Children and Young People in Northern Ireland (August 2017)
Types of Abuse in the Context of Northern Ireland
Although the harm from the abuse might take a long time to be recognisable in the child or young person, professionals may be in a position to observe its indicators earlier, for example, in the way that a parent interacts with their child. Effective and ongoing information sharing is key between professionals.
Harm from abuse is not always straightforward to identify and a child or young person may experience more than one type of harm or significant harm. Harm can be caused by:
1. Physical abuse
2. Sexual abuse
3. Emotional abuse
Source: Co-Operating to Safeguard Children and Young People in Northern Ireland,
Working in Partnership
Global Mediation will work in partnership with a number of organisations and in a range of settings or via online. While we accept that there is potential for variation in practice; the principles of promotion of safeguarding best practice and ensuring an environment which enables children and young people to grow, learn and develop safely and securely will be fundamental.
Good communication is essential in promoting safeguarding both to those we wish to protect, to everyone involved in working with children and young people and to all those with whom we work in partnership. Our safeguarding policy is just one means of promoting safeguarding.
Safeguarding Code of Behaviour while contracted with the Education Authority
As an organisation, Global Mediation aim to create a safe environment by creating a culture of vigilance where there is a clear understanding of the importance of safeguarding.
We must always be aware of the trusted position that we hold and the significant responsibilities that this imposes on us.
Our behaviour towards children, young people and families must always be beyond reproach. We place the highest priority on the safety of individuals and therefore we must always treat them with care and respect.
Those working with children, or young persons must ensure that they are familiar with our Safeguarding Policy and any other relevant procedures/associated documentation.
When working with families and others we must:
• Familiarise ourselves with the safeguarding policies
• Take all reasonable steps to protect such individuals from harm or abuse.
• Take appropriate action should an incident occur.
• Take appropriate action if we become aware of anyone physically, emotionally or sexually abusing a child or young person.
• Report any incident or suspicion of abuse to the Global Mediation Designated Safeguarding Officer, and inform the Designated Teacher in the appropriate manner, as identified within the procedures with Global Mediation and the Education Authority.
Designated Safeguarding Officers
The Designated and Deputy Designated Safeguarding Officer is responsible for acting as a source of advice on safeguarding matters, for co-ordinating action within the organisation and for liaising with Health and Social Care Trusts and other agencies about suspected or
actual cases of child abuse.
Keeping Safe: Our Duty to Care: Standards & Guidance for Safeguarding Children & Young People, Volunteer Now, July 2017
Global Mediation recognise that every organisation should designate at least one person to be responsible for dealing with any concerns about the abuse or harm of children and young people.
This is often called the Designated Safeguarding Officer. It is best practice to also appoint at least one Deputy Designated Safeguarding Officer who can fulfil the role in the absence of the Designated Safeguarding Officer, or if concerns or allegations are made against the Designated Safeguarding Officer.
This section of the organisation’s safeguarding policy includes the name and contact details of the Designated and Deputy Designated Safeguarding Officers, as well as an outline of this role and responsibilities.
The Designated and Deputy Designated Safeguarding Officers should ensure that they
are knowledgeable about safeguarding children and young people issues and have
undertaken training relevant to the role.
Role of the Designated Safeguarding Officer with Global Mediation While Contracted with the Education Authority in Northern Ireland
The role of the Designated and Deputy Designated Safeguarding Officers is to:
• provide information and advice on safeguarding children and young people issues within the organisation while working in Northern Ireland
• ensure that the organisation’s safeguarding policy is followed and particularly to inform the Education Authority child protection services and if necessary the Health and Social Care Trust Gateway Team within the appropriate Trust or the NSPCC Helpline or PSNI of relevant concerns about individual children or young people
• ensure that appropriate information is available at the time of referral and that the referral is confirmed in writing, under confidential protection.
• keep relevant people within the organisation, particularly the Global mediation safeguarding team informed about any action taken and any further action required;
• ensure that an individual case record is maintained of the action taken by the organisation, the liaison with other agencies and the outcome;
• advise Global Mediation safeguarding team of any safeguarding issues while in Northern Ireland
Possible responsibilities of Designated Safeguarding Officer for Global Mediation
1. To act as the first point of contact for facilitators, mediators, staff, including freelance contracted staff and/or associates concerned about the safety and welfare of a child or young person.
2. To be responsible for contacting the Education Authority child protection services or/and children’s social care (Gateway Team) in cases where a child or young person is at risk of harm.
3. To be familiar with Safeguarding Board for Northern Ireland (SBNI) Regional Core Child Protection Policies and Procedures.
4. To be familiar with Global Mediations safeguarding policy.
5. To ensure that all facilitators, mediators, staff, including freelance contracted staff and/or associates know where they can find Global Mediations safeguarding policy.
6. To advise and provide guidance to facilitators, mediators, staff, including freelance contracted staff and/or associates concerned about a safeguarding issue.
7. To support facilitators, mediators, staff, including freelance contracted staff and/or associates after they have shared their concerns about a child or young person.
8. To communicate to facilitators, mediators, staff, including freelance contracted staff and/or associates any changes in policy.
9. To keep accurate records of concerns about children and young people and actions taken.
10. To liaise with appropriate local agencies for support and advice and keep a list of local contacts.
11. To promote the importance of safeguarding across the organisation while working in Northern Ireland.
Responsibilities — Designated Safeguarding Officers
Global Mediation Designated Safeguarding Officers are responsible for acting as a source of advice on safeguarding matters, for co-ordinating safeguarding action within the organisation while working in Northern Ireland and for liaising with Education Authority child protection services, Health and Social Services Trusts, the PSNI and other agencies where necessary about suspected or actual cases of abuse.
The Designated Safeguarding Officers shall be made known to facilitators, mediators, staff, including freelance contracted staff and/or associates as the people to address safeguarding concerns with.
As part of their role, the Designated Safeguarding Officers will:
• accept any safeguarding concerns raised, whether the alleged abuse involves an external person or facilitators, mediators, staff, including freelance contracted staff and/or associates.
• report any concerns to the Education Authority Child Protection services or/and children’s social care (Gateway Team) as necessary.
• support Global Mediation facilitators, mediators, staff, including freelance contracted staff and/or associates to record concerns or suspicions of abuse.
• seek advice from the relevant agencies on safeguarding concerns and report/refer these concerns, if appropriate. If a disclosure/concern relates to a Global Mediation facilitator(s), mediator(s), staff, including freelance contracted staff and/or associates, the Designated Safeguarding Officer will also advise and liaise with the Global Mediation Safeguarding Team and the Ethics Committee/Managing Director and will record all further action taken on a reporting/recording form then followed up in the safeguarding log within the relevant boundaries of confidentiality.
• ensure all matters relating to safeguarding are maintained as written records throughout and on completion of the matter.
• establish contact with the relevant Health & Social Services Trusts and PSNI if necessary.
• keep up to date with relevant legislation, good practice and policy developments.
• ensure that they are knowledgeable about safeguarding and undertakes any training, considered necessary, to remain updated on new developments.
• fulfil any other relevant duties that may become apparent as the role of Designated Safeguarding Officer develops.
Record Keeping and Information Management
The Designated Safeguarding Officers have responsibility for keeping safeguarding records securely and for sharing information in an appropriate, purposeful and timely manner with the Education Authority Child Protection services, Health & Social Care Trust Gateway Teams, PSNI and any other agency as required.
Safeguarding records are to be kept securely and confidentially by the Global Mediation Safeguarding Team with access limited to nominated personnel, using a protected password.
Whilst it is important that a partnership approach is adopted to ensure the safety and welfare of children and young people, it is of equal importance that all concerned are confident that the information they provide will only be disclosed where it is in the best interests of the child or young person to do so. Global Mediation’s safeguarding policy has been carefully constructed to ensure such confidentiality while protecting the interests of the child or young person.
When making a referral the Designated Safeguarding Officers will need to provide as much detail as possible (child or young person’s name, address, circumstances).
Global Mediation’s Designated Safeguarding Officers who have been specially trained in the area of safeguarding children and young people and are committed to the principle of confidentiality.
While Contracted with the Education Authority
in Northern Ireland
STAGE 1 – Reporting or Raising Concerns
For facilitators, mediators, staff, including freelance contracted staff and/or associates for Global Mediation
If the person needs emergency protection from harm you must:
• Contact the emergency service immediately.
• Inform the Designated Safeguarding Officer as soon as possible.
• Complete the reporting/recording form of what you witnessed, heard or were told.
• Sign and date it and send it to the Designated Safeguarding Officer.
If the individual is not at risk of immediate harm:
• If in school speak to the designated safeguarding teacher. Complete the reporting/recording form of what you witnessed, heard or were told.
• Sign and date it and send it to the Designated Safeguarding Officer.
• Inform the Designated Safeguarding Officer as soon as possible.
Contact details of the Designated Safeguarding Officers
Office contact number: 028 9033 9999 Out of hours contact number: 0800 0644488
If a child or young person makes a disclosure to you, the following actions need to be taken:
• Acknowledge the person’s experiences as real.
• Advise the individual that you must pass on the information to the Designated Safeguarding Officer.
• If disclosure is in school inform the designated safeguarding teacher.
• Never give promises about being able to keep information confidential.
• Listen carefully and sensitively, stay calm and ensure a clear understanding of what the person is saying.
• Take any disclosure seriously.
• Reassure the person that s/he has a right to tell.
STAGE 2 – Review the Concern
For Designated Safeguarding Officers
On receiving or recognising a concern, the Designated Safeguarding Officer must review the concern, along with any other relevant information and decide, in liaison with the Safeguarding Team, if necessary, what action should be taken.
If the child or young person is in imminent danger of harm you should refer to the police.
If there is a clear and immediate risk of harm/alleged crime refer to the Gateway Service/PSNI
refer immediately by telephone to Gateway Team, PSNI, Ambulance.
If there are suspicions or concerns with no immediate risk of harm refer to the education authority child protection services and if necessary the Gateway Team in writing using the reporting / recording form.
If you are unsure what action you should take seek advice and support from social services gateway team or the NSPCC Helpline 0808 800 5000
Whatever your decision, you MUST:
1. Record in writing in the safeguarding log all actions taken, the reasons for these and by whom the actions were taken.
2. Start a Safeguarding Case File (kept as per data protection guidelines).
3 Keep a full record of all further actions and decisions.
4 Ensure pastoral care (if required) is provided to any as appropriate facilitators, mediators, staff, including freelance contracted staff and/or associates for Global Mediation.
You will need to provide as much detail as possible (child or young person’s name, address, circumstances).
STAGE 3 – Assessments and Enquiries
For Designated Safeguarding Officers & Authorities
The Designated Safeguarding Officer may be asked to attend strategy meetings and ensure that any recommendations made at that meeting are fed back to the relevant people within the Education Authority and Global Mediation.
The relevant social services team will commence an assessment and may decide to hold a strategy meeting. This is a meeting of professionals, such as police, education, social services and any other organisations. This may include the Designated Safeguarding Officer from Global Mediation.
Because of the information shared at the strategy meeting the police and/or social services may make further enquiries or assessments of the matter and will keep other agencies updated if necessary.
Allegations of abuse against a person who works withchildren/young people
If an accusation is made against a facilitator, mediator, staff, including freelance contracted staff and/or associates for Global Mediation, the Designated Safeguarding Officer with whom the disclosure has been raised will liaise with the Global Mediation Safeguarding team and with the Health and Social Care Trust (HSCT) in accordance with disciplinary procedures.
Safeguarding Concerns/Allegations about a Designated Safeguarding Officer
If the concern/allegation is about a Designated Safeguarding Officer, this should be reported to the Ethics Committee/Managing Director of Global mediation and with the Health and Social Care Trust (HSCT) in accordance with disciplinary procedures.
Concerns about failures to adhere to Safeguarding Policy
If a facilitator, mediator, staff, including freelance contracted staff and/or associates for Global Mediation has concerns about a colleague not fulfilling the requirements of Global Mediation Safeguarding Policy, these concerns should be taken to the Designated Safeguarding Officer. The
Designated Safeguarding Officer should refer to the safeguarding team who will liaise with social services for further advice.
Gateway team: 0300 1234 333
A duty social worker is available to take your call Monday-Friday 9am-5pm (excluding bank holidays)
Regional Emergency Social Work Service (RESWS): (028) 9504 9999
A duty social worker is available to take your call 5pm to 9am weekdays
or 24 hours at weekends and bank holidays.
NSPCC Helpline: 0808 800 5000 or email: email@example.com
The Education Authority Child Protection Support Service (CPSS)
The Child Protection Support Service (CPSS) was first established in April 2006 and is part of the Education Authority’s Children & Young People’s Services Directorate.
The service is managed by a Head of Service and there are Designated Officers for Child
Protection based in each of the five EA offices.
Office contact number: 028 9598 5590
Designated & Deputy Designated Officer
Deputy Designated Officer — Nikki McCartney: firstname.lastname@example.org
Office contact number: 028 9033 9999
Our of hours contact number: 0800 0644488