Thinking Anglicans

National Safeguarding Steering Group identifies priorities

This morning, GS 2092 Report by the National Safeguarding Steering Group has been published.

For the context, see our earlier article: Safeguarding debate at General Synod.

The Church Times has a report: National register proposed for clergy to ease safeguarding concerns.

Update: The Bishop of London has published a blog article: Safeguarding – independence V responsibility? This also appears at Christian Today.

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Philip CunninghamStanley MonkhouseJeremyMatt InesonJohn Clifford Recent comment authors
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John Clifford
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John Clifford

After however many decades this discussion has been going on, why not just jump to the final step? Pass a rule that no male employee of the Church shall be left alone with any person who comes to the church or that employee for any purpose. I suppose that lawyers will mange to weasel this out to a couple of pages, but at least the basic principles are clear.

Philip Cunningham
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Philip Cunningham

I do take the point but ask, purely practically, not to argue any point, what am I meant to do when saying Morning prayer and one other person joins me? Walk out?

Stanley Monkhouse
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Not just male employees, Mr Clifford. I know several senior female clerics about whom I would have concerns. There are some female parishioners that I simply will not visit unless I know that a third person will be with us. I wonder how long before a female cleric hits the news for the wrong reasons. FWIW (nothing, of course) I thought Sarah Mullally’s piece badly written and anodyne in the extreme.

Matt Ineson
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Matt Ineson

That two of the bishops of the safeguarding steering group were appointed after safeguarding complaints against them which have still not been resolved because the church are blocking investigation into them does not inspire confidence.
Also that several senior bishops are about to be questioned by the police for safeguarding failures (Which the church is desperate to keep quiet) doesn’t inspire much confidence either.
A request to risk assess these bishops under canon c30 (for leaving children and the vulnerable at risk of abuse) was sent to Justin Welby in August last year. Still no reply…
This is all whitewash. Nothing changes.

Jeremy
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Jeremy

Am I the only one who thinks that the Bishop of London is making a straw-man argument?
“I do not think we should jump to the conclusion that a safeguarding system which is independent of the Church of England will fix everything. I do not believe that the Church should lose responsibility for ensuring that it is a safe place.”

Stanley Monkhouse
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You are not, Jeremy. I’ve listened to Sarah Mullally and read her writings. I find them clinical, lacking warmth and defensive. Deeply unimpressive.