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Welcome to the Safeguarding Department

Safeguarding is the protection of children and vulnerable adults, who are suffering or at risk of suffering significant harm, ill treatment, the impairment of health or development, abuse or neglect. It involves proactively creating cultures of safeguarding with a zero tolerance approach to prevent abuse of any kind from occurring in the first place and reacting to those who have been hurt by abuse to reduce any future harm.

Mission Statement

The Catholic Church of England and Wales, the Bishops and Congregational Leaders are committed to safeguarding as an integral part of the life and ministry of the Church. We affirm the One Church approach to safeguarding children, young people and adults who may be vulnerable through the promotion of a sustained and sustainable culture of constant vigilance. The Church recognises the personal dignity and rights of all Vulnerable People towards whom it has a special responsibility. The Church and individual members of it undertake to take all the appropriate steps to maintain a safe environment for all and to practice fully and positively Christ’s Ministry towards children, young people and adults who may be vulnerable, and to respond sensitively and compassionately to their needs in order to help keep them safe from harm. The Church authorities will liaise closely with statutory agencies to ensure that any allegations of abuse are promptly and properly investigated and where appropriate, survivors supported and perpetrators held to account. The Church wishes to ensure that its parishes and Religious Congregations have the confidence to enable children, young people and vulnerable adults to have peace of mind, knowing they will be cared for and loved by their Christian community.  As a Diocese, we foster a Zero Tolerance approach to abuse of any kind and are continually developing our practice to embed a culture that is safe, where people are listened to and heard and where we learn from cases and people who come into contact with us to ensure that we are ever evolving.

Why is Safeguarding so important to the Church?

The wider concept of safeguarding is “nurturing wellbeing as well as protecting the young and the vulnerable from harm and abuse.”


• is essential to the Church’s fulfillment of its calling and mission given by Christ

• is implicit in what Jesus intended when he said ’feed my lambs, feed my sheep’

• is essential if we are to introduce people effectively to a relationship with God

• is a sign of the Kingdom – Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation

Safeguarding is an exercise of charity and justice:

• helps the Church to stay one, holy, Catholic and Apostolic

• reflects the loving nature of God

• is an essential context for people to receive the sacraments and grow in discipleship

• is part of becoming a Church that people will want to join!”

Canon Kieron O’Brien – CSSA ‘SAFEGUARDING AS MINISTRY’ event, Oscott, April 2011

Safeguarding Policy Statement

Hallam Diocese recognises that safeguarding needs to be at the heart of our activities in order to provide a welcoming, safe and supportive environment for all. We wish for people to be able practice their faith and take part in the many activities the church has to offer with confidence, so that they may spiritually flourish.  As part of a caring Christian community, the welfare and protection of our children, young people and adults should be everyone’s responsibility. We wish to actively promote safeguarding, creating a Zero Tolerance of abuse culture, which places a strong emphasis on the protection of people from all forms of harm or abuse regardless of age, disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex, or sexual orientation.

To achieve this Hallam Diocese aims to ensure safe working practices and procedures are adhered to, including the following

• Using our procedures to respond to and manage any allegations appropriately.

• Using our safeguarding procedures to share concerns and relevant information with agencies who need to know, and where appropriate involving children, young people, parents, families and carers.

• Safely recruiting staff and volunteers, ensuring all necessary checks are made. When required staff should be interviewed, references taken up and when necessary a DBS check completed.

• Providing effective management for staff link and volunteers through supervision, support and training.

• Promote Safeguarding awareness and zero tolerance approach to abuse of any kind through training and events.

• Implementing a Code of Conduct for staff and volunteers.

• Creating safe and supportive environments, including adequate supervision of activities and by following health and safety guidelines/procedures.

• Following procedures and policy for safe use of technology

• Recording and storing information professionally and securely.

• Providing pastoral care to those who have experienced abuse.

The Diocese utilises the Catholic Safeguarding Standards Agency (CSSA) policies and procedures, and national law, as fundamental frameworks for Safeguarding. This is in line with the Catholic Church’s strategy of ensuring a “one church approach”, promoting uniformity of procedure across all Diocese in the United Kingdom. This policy statement should be read alongside CSSA policies and procedures which can be found on https://catholicsafeguarding.org.uk/https://catholicsafeguarding.org.uk/

Key policy documents

The following links are to policies/procedures that are frequently used/referred to. This list is not exhaustive and further policies can be found on the CSSA website.


Support for Survivors of Abuse

Hallam Commitment To Survivors

Safe recruitment 

DBS Processing

Handling of DBS Complaints

Information Security Policy for Disclosure and Barring Services

Creating a Safe Environment Policy

Management of Concerns and Allegations 

Hallam Policy-Management-of-Allegations.

Hallam Responding to an Allegation FlowChart

Appendix A Abuse Categories and Definitions


Where Policies Refer to Specific Forms, these are contained in the Forms Section of the website


Safeguarding Governance

The Diocese has a dedicated Safeguarding Co-ordinator to act as a designated point of contact for Safeguarding matters/concerns. The Safeguarding Coordinator is responsible for ensuring safeguarding concerns are dealt with appropriately, offering guidance and support on safeguarding matters, developing safeguarding practice and policy, collaborating with/or signposting to partner agencies.

The Diocese is committed to appointing at least one voluntary Safeguarding Representative for each Parish to assist in promoting and raising awareness of Safeguarding Policy and Procedure at a local level.

The Trustees Safeguarding Committee is responsible for leading strategic direction of safeguarding policy and practice within the Diocese. The Trustees Safeguarding Committee is headed by a Trustee Chair and independent Lay Vice Chair with relevant professional experience.

Trustees Safeguarding Committee membership also includes representatives from partnership agencies, clergy/religious advisers and safeguarding representatives.

Safeguarding within Catholic Schools remains the responsibility of the school and the appointed safeguarding lead. The Hallam Safeguarding Coordinator will be informed of any safeguarding concern in a school on a need to know basis where there is need for joint working to ensure good safeguarding practice.

Reporting a concern

When a Safeguarding allegation or concern is raised- such as an allegation of harm of a child or adult at risk by a member of clergy / religious / church personnel/ volunteer, contact the Safeguarding Coordinator within 24 hours or as soon as reasonably practicable.

The Safeguarding Coordinator can be contacted out of hours on mobile 07909117964. If the Safeguarding Coordinator is unavailable, leave a message. Pass on any notes and/or a Form-CM1 to the Safeguarding Coordinator within 24 hours.

For urgent matters where there is a risk of immediate or serious harm, contact the police and/or local social services. In the event of an emergency call 999, for less urgent contact with the police call 101. A follow up report should be made to the Safeguarding Coordinator within 24 hours. The form (CM1) can be used for this purpose.

The suspected perpetrator of abuse should not be contacted without the advice of the Safeguarding Coordinator/Police/Social care.

Allegations of past abuse against children/adults at risk should still be reported, even if it is believed that the perpetrator is deceased or no longer a threat.

Key contacts

Safeguarding Co-ordinator
Marie O’Donnelly

Email:[email protected]

Assistant to Safeguarding Co-ordinator
Jo Pearson
0114 2566453
Email: [email protected]

Chair of Trustees Safeguarding Committee
Catherine Bailey
Email: [email protected]

Vice Chair of Committee
Kathleen Walley
Email: [email protected]

Clergy Advisor for Safeguarding
Fr Peter McGuire
Email: [email protected]

Safeguarding Team Manager
Bernie Ware
Tel: 0114 2566407

Catholic Safeguarding Standards Agency
020 7901 1920
[email protected]

Key Terms
Child refers to any person under 18 years of age

Adult at Risk- Any person over the age of 18, who is need of care and support, and who are experiencing or are at risk of neglect or abuse.

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Diocesan Safeguarding Co-ordinator: Marie O’Donnelly
The Hallam Pastoral Centre, St Charles Street, Sheffield, S9 3WU
Office: 0114 256 6454, Work mobile: 0790 911 7964
Email: [email protected]

Chair of the Trustees Safeguarding Committee: Catherine Bailey                                                                                                                                                            The Hallam Pastoral Centre, St Charles Street, Sheffield S9 3WU                                                                                                                                                                                Email: [email protected]

Vice Chair of Trustees Safeguarding Committee: Kathleen Walley
The Hallam Pastoral Centre, St Charles Street, Sheffield S9 3WU
Email: [email protected] 

Assistant to the Safeguarding Co-ordinator: Jo Pearson
The Hallam Pastoral Centre, St Charles Street, Sheffield S9 3WU
Tel: 0114 256 6453
Email: [email protected]

Hallam Pastoral Centre
St Charles Street, Sheffield S9 3WU, UK

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