From Lambeth Palace: Archbishop’s Chichester Visitation – interim report published
The interim report for the enquiry into the operation of the diocesan child protection policies in the Diocese of Chichester has today been published.
The report was written by Bishop John Gladwin and Chancellor Rupert Bursell QC who were appointed as the Archbishop’s commissaries to carry out the enquiry…
And the Archbishop of Canterbury notes:
“…I have decided that the visitation should continue and that both safeguarding and appointments matters should be conducted under the supervision of this office until uniformly better practice can be assured.
The problems relating to safeguarding in Chichester have been specific to that diocese rather than a reflection of failures in the legal processes or national policies of the Church of England. Nevertheless in the course of their work those who have conducted the visitation have identified some areas where they believe that lessons learned from Chichester could usefully point to some further development of national policy or processes. These will now be considered, along with the rest of this Report, by our national Safeguarding group as soon as possible.”
Scroll down the press release for the full set of recommendations made for the Diocese of Chichester.
The full report is available as a PDF: Interim Report Of The Commissaries Appointed By The Archbishop Of Canterbury In Relation To A Visitation Upon The Diocese Of Chichester (624k)
For the background to this, see this Press Advisory from Lambeth Palace from December 2011.
The Bishop of Chichester, Martin Warner, has issued a detailed statement which begins:
“I am deeply grateful to the Commissaries for their work in producing such a detailed, honest and wide-ranging analysis of the current situation concerning Safeguarding in the Diocese of Chichester. I have not yet officially begun my work as diocesan bishop and so, in many respects, their Report comes at an apposite time as the diocese also looks forward to a new phase in its ministry and mission.
This Interim Report reinforces for all who read it how the damage caused to each survivor is unique and intensely personal. Let us never forget that. Nor can we ever imagine that words of apology, deep and sincere though they might be, take away the damage and wicked shamefulness that survivors of abuse carry as a destructive burden.
I am particularly grateful to the Commissaries for their suggestion that I meet with all known survivors of abuse and will seek to do this as soon as my public ministry begins…
The Chair of the Joint Safeguarding Liaison Group, Bishop Paul Butler, has issued this statement.