Westminster Abbey is committed to facilitating an environment in which children, young people and adults – especially adults at risk of abuse - are able to visit, worship and grow in Christ safely. Abuse and mistreatment in any form is entirely contrary to Scripture and the Church’s teachings. In respecting the dignity and value of every person the Dean and Chapter is committed to:
- the care, nurture of and respectful pastoral ministry with all children and all adults
- the safeguarding and protection of all children, young people and adults when they are at risk
- establishing a safe, caring community which provide a loving environment and a culture of ‘informed vigilance’ and action towards safeguarding everyone.
The Dean and Chapter will seek to fulfill these through:
- the production of clear policy and procedures with which all will comply
- the safer recruitment, training and support of those in positions of responsibility and trust
- responding without delay to concerns and complaints regarding actual or potential harm or mistreatment (advice to be sought / action taken within 24 hours)
- cooperating with professionals and processes necessary to ensure proper safeguards and pastoral care
- considering a report on safeguarding matters each quarter
- the provision of care and support to those who have experienced abuse
- the provision of safe supervision and support to those who have abused others.
Whenever the choristers of Westminster Abbey Choir School are at Westminster Abbey or under the care of our staff or volunteers the provisions of the Choir School Safeguarding Policy and Procedures will apply.
The principles below will guide all elements of safeguarding activity delivered by those at all levels within Westminster Abbey (including the Abbey Church, St Margaret’s Church and Westminster Abbey Choir School):
- pastoral care which is respectful and informed
- timely safeguarding action – advice to be sought / action to be taken within 24 hours
- the involvement of others on a need to know basis only
- prevention and the early identification and management of actual or potential risks – being aware that it is better to take action before harm occurs
- the discharging of duties to the highest level of Christian behaviour
- the active commitment of all in promoting and keeping our community safe.
The Abbey’s policy and procedures apply to all at Westminster Abbey, paid and unpaid, clergy and laity. Those working for or in the Westminster Abbey Choir School or engaging with the choristers are subject and should give priority to following the provisions of the Choir School Safeguarding Policy and Procedures.