Teacher and children smiling Teacher and children smiling

Safeguarding Guidance and Resources

In the Diocese of Chelmsford we have adopted the suite of Policy and Practice Guidance provided by the National Safeguarding Team for the Church of England.

The Parish Safeguarding Handbook

The Parish Safeguarding Handbook

Click to download

Click on a link below to take you to the relevant section:

Diocese of Chelmsford Statements

Church of England NST Statements

Church of England NST Policy and Practice Guidance

Church of England NST Safer Recruitment and People Management

Church of England NST Templates, Models & Resources

Church of England NST Responding Well to Safeguarding Allegations or Concerns

Safeguarding & Digital Communications

As more of us are now using digital and video communications in our ministry it is important that we are aware of the safeguarding implications and following best practice. Please ensure you are familiar with the following guidance and share it with those in your parish who organise online meetings or worship activity.

GDPR and permissions for adults

Those appearing in video or photographs will need to have given you their permission. A photo release form can be signed by adults. The form must include all the places that the photo or video may be used by the church. 

The template photo release form can be downloaded HERE

GDPR and permissions for children

Videos containing children may be used by the church if consent has been given by their parent or guardian. This needs to be signed consent and should include the places which the photo or video may be used by the church. If permission has not been given, it can be helpful to identify these children by using a simple paper wristband, or by asking them to sit in a photo and video free zone. Practically, seeking permission may need a few extra helpers on the day, working from a safe social distance. Alternatively, prepare ahead by sending out the forms to your church newsletter list to avoid queues on the day.

More information can be found under the 'Video and Livestreaming' section

Church of England NST Theology & Safeguarding:

A resource to help local churches do some theological thinking around safeguarding has been published today (30th June 2016) by the Faith and Order Commission (FAOC). The text is meant to be read as a specifically theological resource alongside safeguarding policy and guidance documents from the local diocese and the national church.

Duty to have "due regard” to House of Bishops safeguarding policy and practice guidance

The Safeguarding and Clergy Discipline Measure 2016 imposes a legal duty on all authorised clergy, licensed readers and lay workers, churchwardens and PCCs (parochial church councils) to have 'due regard' to safeguarding guidance issued by the House of Bishops on matters relating to the safeguarding of children and vulnerable adults (this will include both policy and practice guidance). 

The legal duty to have 'due regard' means that, as a matter of law, the guidance should be given great weight and must be followed unless there are ‘cogent reasons’ for not doing so. A person who is required to have due regard to the guidance should not simply take it upon themselves to decide that there are cogent reasons for departing from the guidance. Such a decision should be taken – if at all – only after case-specific advice has been obtained from both the DSA (Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser) and the Diocesan Registrar.

What are the repercussions for those who do not follow ‘due regard’ guidance?

  • A failure by a member of the clergy to comply with the duty to have due regard to House of Bishops safeguarding guidance is misconduct under the Clergy Discipline Measure 2003 (‘CDM’). 
  • A failure by a reader or lay worker to have due regard to House of Bishops safeguarding guidance would be grounds for the revocation of the reader’s or lay worker’s licence by the bishop.
  • A failure by a churchwarden or parochial church council to have due regard to House of Bishops safeguarding could result in an investigation being carried out by the Charity Commission and the churchwarden or PCC members being disqualified as charity trustees.
  • The Ecclesiastical Insurance Group has made it clear that their insurance cover is only valid where House of Bishops’ safeguarding policy and practice guidance is being followed. 

For more info: