Thinking Anglicans

Safeguarding data 2018

Press release from the Church of England

Safeguarding data 2018
02/06/2020

Safeguarding data has been published today taken from annual safeguarding returns, collected by dioceses in 2018 and sent to the National Safeguarding Team. It also contains comparison on data collected over the three previous years 2015-17.

The majority of safeguarding-related concerns or allegations relate to children or vulnerable adults who attend or who have contact with the Church and their lives within the community.

Overall the number of concerns or allegations reported to dioceses in 2018 relating to children, young people and vulnerable adults in the Church was 2,504. This compares to 3287 in 2017, and is slightly higher than 2015 and slightly lower than 2016.

A quarter of concerns or allegations in 2018 required reporting to statutory authorities similar to 2017.

In 2018, 16% of all concerns (400 cases) relate to clergy, including retired and deceased clergy, a slight increase on the average for 2015-17 which was around 12%. There are currently around 20,000 active clergy in the Church.

Safeguarding-related disciplinary measures against clergy decreased in 2018 and combined with the increase in reports against clergy this suggests that more concerns are being raised earlier because there are greater overall numbers of reports but lower numbers of disciplinary cases.

The Bishop of Manchester, David Walker, a member of the National Safeguarding Steering Group, said:
“In any report about data of this nature, it is important to recognise that behind each statistic are real human lives and that this is a snapshot of the vital safeguarding work going on in all our 16,000 churches across the country. As the report states it is most likely that where there is an increase compared to previous years this reflects the impact of safeguarding training across the whole Church, and the increased likelihood that people will report concerns to their diocesan safeguarding adviser, where there may have been greater reticence in the past. The NST will continue to study trends over a longer period to inform its ongoing safeguarding work and has committed to publishing data on an annual basis.”

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Helen King
Helen King
3 months ago

I think I’ve asked this of previous reports, but this time the proportion is even more significant. What types of abuse are covered in ‘other’?

Anon
Anon
3 months ago

I was struck in the press release by the Bishop of Manchester’s comment about how the impact of Church of England safeguarding training may have contributed to an increased reporting of concerns. I have done this training at C0 and C1 levels, and know that if something seems odd, it is not our place to make judgements, but rather, we should report it. Having had recent experience of attempting to raise a safeguarding concern with a Diocese, I must say that I found making such a report to be difficult. The response may have been different if I had reported… Read more »

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