Shuffle Tunes

Child protection and vulnerable people policy

Shuffletunes’ policy for the protection of children and vulnerable adults.

1. Context and Mission

Shuffletunes is a choir. Its mission is to allow people a safe and positive environment for singing. It is a healthy and mutually respectful group that expects everyone within its organisation, as members or organisers, to treat children, young adults and adults fairly and respectfully. It aims to work within the local community in a positive role.

2. Policy Remit

2.1 The purpose of this policy is to set out the Shuffletunes' position on the protection of children and vulnerable adults. For the purpose of this policy, anyone under 18 years of age will be considered a child. The principles contained in this policy will also be applied to vulnerable adults.

2.2 Children working with Shuffletunes will be doing so with the permission of their parents. Whilst the primary responsibility for the welfare of children and vulnerable adults rests with the supervising adult, Shuffletunes wishes to ensure that all children and others who may be vulnerable, whether because of their age, physical or mental ability or ill health, are safe from harm while working with us.

2.3 The welfare of the child is of paramount importance. We believe that every child, regardless of age, disability, gender, racial or ethnic origin, religious belief and sexual identity, has the right to be protected from abuse and harm at all times and in all situations. As such, the Shuffletunes is committed to providing a safe environment for children to sing in.

2.4 Child protection is the responsibility of every adult who has involvement with children. It is the duty of all staff and volunteers working with Shuffletunes to prevent the physical, sexual or emotional abuse of all children with whom they come into contact.

2.5 Adults working with children must also be provided with safeguards and made aware of best practice so they can be protected from wrongful allegations. It is expected that Shuffletunes employees must have a current enhanced CRB. Appendix I of this policy contains guidelines, which will be adhered to when working with children.

2.6 This policy applies to all employees, volunteers and helpers attached to Shuffletunes.

3. Policy Objectives

3.1 Awareness and prevention

3.1.1 Shuffletunes recognises that there are four main types of abuse suffered by children. These are physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse and neglect.

3.1.2 All adults or leaders working with Shuffletunes, have to be made aware of Shuffletunes’ child protection policy and guidelines for working with children.

3.1.3 Through awareness and good practice, Shuffletunes employees can minimise the risk of abuse to children and also protect themselves against false allegations of abuse.

3.1.4 Shuffletunes is committed to careful planning of appropriate activities and groupings for children and young people in order to minimise situations where abuse could occur.

3.2 Recruitment

3.2.1 Shuffletunes employees and volunteers will be carefully selected, trained and monitored to ensure that children with whom they may come into contact are protected.

3.2.2 It is recognised that abuse is facilitated when an abuser can find an opportunity to be alone with a child or other vulnerable person. The risk that abuse may occur increases where an abuser can maintain regular contact in order to build a relationship with the child or other vulnerable person.

3.2.3 Only Shuffletunes employees and volunteers with the opportunity for unsupervised access to children and vulnerable adults would need to undergo checks with the Criminal Records Bureau.

3.2.4 It is the policy of Shuffletunes that, at present, staff should not be solely responsible for looking after children when working in school environments. Shuffletunes employees should not place or find themselves in a situation where they are alone with a child. If this should happen it should be immediately reported to a member of the school staff.

3.2.5 Outside the dropping off, collection and rehearsal or performance time with Shuffletunes employees, children are the responsibility of the school staff and the child’s family. Contact details of parents will be kept by Shuffletunes in order to contact parents in the event of an emergency or change in situation that may affect the child. It may be necessary to communicate with the child’s school in order to maintain good contact with the child’s family.

3.2.6 It will be expected that all Shuffletunes employees hold current and valid enhanced CRB certificiates. Volunteers working with Shuffletunes will be expected to remain with the Shuffletunes employees at all times.

3.3 Reporting

3.3.1 Shuffletunes seeks to develop a culture within which employees and volunteers feel able to point out inappropriate attitudes, behaviours and situations to the school responsible for the child. An open line of communication between the school and Shuffletunes will be expected to be maintained.

3.3.2 Any volunteer or member of staff who suspects that abuse or inappropriate behaviour may have taken place, or who has had a disclosure made to them by a child, will report it to the child’s school’s CPO immediately.

3.3.3 All suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly, appropriately within the school’s Child Protection procedures.

3.3.4 Shuffletunes employees are expected to be familiar with the child protection and e-safety policies of schools and LA’s. They are expected to respect them and operate safely with children that are in the school’s and LA’s care.

3.4 Risk Assessment

3.4.1 Shuffletunes will assume that the school has undertaken reasonable risk assessments that will allow children to operate with Shuffletunes employees within the environment of the school.

3.4.2 If children are involved in a Shuffletunes production outside school, Shuffletunes must undertake a risk assessment to improve the commitment towards the safety and security of the children that are working with them.

3.4.3 Shuffletunes will seek to obtain supportive information about children who have specific medical or behavioural needs that should be met to allow the child to participate positively in activities with Shuffletunes. It is the joint responsibility of the school and Shuffletunes to see that those children that have specific needs are treated fairly.

3.5 Enhanced Disclosure

Shuffletunes employees should keep up to date enhanced disclosure CRB certification.

4. Policy Review Basis

This policy will be reviewed on a three-yearly basis.