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Procedures for Disclosure Scotland

Protecting Vulnerable Groups Scheme (PVG) 

www.scottishcatholicsafeguarding.org.uk

Galloway Diocese 2017 Safeguarding Update For Parishes

On behalf of our Diocese’s Safeguarding Service I would like to take this opportunity as your Parish Safeguarding Coordinator to update you on the key themes and priorities for 2017.

The commitment set out in the response to the McLellan Commission report in August 2015 remains the message to be reinforced across our parish communities.

‘We accept that Safeguarding is the responsibility of the whole church, all of the baptised as well as ordained, professed, those who are employed and those who volunteer, working together to create and maintain safe environments’.

In promoting this there are key themes arising from the principal recommendations of the McLellan commission linked to the implementation plan agreed by the Bishops Conference of Scotland which will be the focus for our diocesan safeguarding service in 2017.

We recognize that our volunteers, Parish Safeguarding Coordinators, Advisers and Clergy need ongoing training and support to allow them to sustain their roles. Through 2017 the roll out of the national training programme reflecting the commitment to the development of undertaking regular and high quality training and continuous professional development as identified in McLellan’s recommendations will offer a staged programme of opportunities for all involved in assuring Safeguarding in our parish communities.

‘Support for the survivors of abuse must be an absolute priority for the Catholic Church in Scotland in the field of Safeguarding.’

Media would suggest that our church has not visibly progressed our engagement with survivors and although this essentially is misinformation it is recognised that we need to offer clearer and a more robust public information pathway for access to support including the National Counselling Service for those who have been abused in the Catholic Church.

Work continues ensuring a consistent approach to Safeguarding across all sectors of the church throughout Scotland. This will be seen in the roll out of both the national training programme the assurance of safe recruitment practices for all volunteers engaged in regulated work; internal and external scrutiny of process and practice through both the annual audit requirements and development of an independent review body to monitor the effectiveness of the delivery of the agreed implementation plan.

The resourcefulness of volunteers and Parish Safeguarding Coordinators supporting their Parish Priests is critical to the continued improvement of safeguarding practices across our diocese. However, as we thank and remember their continuing commitment we need to recognise that we, all of us also have a role to play.

Pope Francis in his letter on the Feast of The Innocents 28 December 2016 asks us to renew our complete commitment to ensuring that the atrocities that occasioned in our church in the past will no longer take place in our midst; that we find the courage needed to take all necessary measures so that such crimes may never be repeated.

St Andrew’s Parish Co-ordinators: Rebecca Copland and Anne Murdy, 
St Columba’s Parish Co-ordinator: Yvonne Panzack,
Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser: Mr Gerry McCabe,
Diocesan Office, 8 Corsehill Road, Ayr, KA7 2ST
Telephone: 01292 266750, Fax: 01292 289888,
Email: safeguarding@gallowaydiocese.org.uk