Roles and Responsibilities for Ensuring Safe Ministry

All clergy, Parish Councils, and those in authority are responsible for ensuring that as far as is reasonably practicable all church workers and those accessing ministries conducted by the parish comply with the protocols and guidelines established under this policy. In particular:

The Diocesan Bishop

is the Head of Agency, or Church Authority as defined by the Professional Standards Ordinance:

  • Oversees and implements Safe Ministry Policy and Protocols at Diocesan level
  • Appoints and licenses clergy and licensed lay workers in the Diocese
  • Disciplines Clergy and church workers under the Professional Standards Ordinance 2012 and the Clergy Discipline Ordinance 2019
  • Ensures the resolution of ministry issues in accordance with the Clerical Ministry Ordinance 2009 and the Diocesan Grievance Protocol
  • Reviews decisions made in relation to Parish Safety under the Administration of Parishes Ordinance 2010
  • Initiates policy and procedural development in relation to safe ministry within the Diocese
  • With the Diocesan Council, reviews and approves changes to safe ministry policies
  • Seeks advice on the Safe Ministry Policy from the Diocesan Council and the Professional Standards Committee
  • Oversees the investigation of complaints under Faithfulness in Service not under the auspices of the Professional Standards Ordinance 2012

Assistant Bishops and Archdeacons

  • Assist the Bishop in discharging his/her responsibilities within a region or to a group of ministries within the Diocese
  • May act as the delegate of the Bishop

Diocesan Council

  • Works with the Bishop to review, advise on and approve safe ministry policies and protocols for the diocese
  • Seeks advice on Safe Ministry Policy from the Professional Standards Committee
  • Assigns tasks to office holders to ensure the implementation of this Policy
  • Ensures office holders have adequate resources for the implementation of the Safe Ministry Policy and Protocols
  • Appoints members of the Diocesan Tribunal, Professional Standards Committee, Professional Standards Board, Professional Standards Review Board

Professional Standards Committee

  • Advises the Diocesan Council on policy for the protection of children and vulnerable people, and addresses related risks, and ensures the appropriate support and redress for survivors of abuse
  • Implements the Professional Standards Ordinance and protocols and carries out its functions in relation to investigations
  • liaise and communicate as detailed by the Professional Standards Ordinance of the Diocese
  • Ensures the delivery of safe ministry training within the Diocese
  • Initiates policy and procedural development in relation to safe ministry within the Diocese
  • Assists the Bishop with advice on request in relation to complaints under Faithfulness in Service which do not come under the auspices of the Professional Standards Ordinance 2012

Director of Professional Standards (DPS)

  • Acts as the Executive Officer of the Professional Standards Committee
  • Carries out all functions as detailed in the Professional Standards Ordinance of the Diocese and relevant protocols
  • Carries out all relevant functions in relation to the National Register Canon
  • Assists the Bishop when requested in the resolution of complaints/grievances under the Grievance Protocol
  • Assists the Bishop when requested in relation to complaints under Faithfulness in Service which do not come under the auspices of the Professional Standards Ordinance 2012

Diocesan Chief Executive and Chief Operating Officer

  • Writes, reviews and provides recommendations to Diocesan Council in relation to Safe Ministry related Ordinance, Policy and Protocols

Bishops’ Executive Assistant and Diocesan Office Staff under the oversight of the Chief Operating Officer

  • Maintain records of licensing, working with children checks and other recruitment information for clergy and other licence holders
  • Maintain records of safe ministry training for all people authorised to work with children in the Diocese

All Clergy and church workers

  • Comply with the Safe Ministry Policy and Protocols and any processes established by Canon of General Synod in force in the Diocese or Ordinance of the Diocese
  • Comply with Faithfulness in Service

Incumbents (who may also be known as Rector, Priest-in-Charge, Locum or Priest appointed to a church in the parish under the care of the Bishop)

  • Must ensure the safety of any person attending Public Worship and other events in the parish.
  • Appoint lay church workers ensuring that they are suitable for the particular ministry and in accordance with this policy
  • Implement the Safe Ministry Policy within the parish.
  • Ensure the safety of people participating in parish life forms part of the parish teaching program each year

Churchwardens

  • Must ensure the safety of any person attending Public Worship and other events in the parish.
  • Must advise the Incumbent, Parish Council and Diocesan Chief Executive promptly should they form the view that any Parish land, building or facilities has become unsafe, or that the Parish is unable to comply with all or part of the Diocesan Work Health and Safety Policies;
  • Report to the Bishop any irregularities in the performance of services or neglect of duty by any licensed person;
  • Advise the Bishop in a timely manner if they have serious concerns about the health and wellbeing of any member of the clergy serving in a licensed ministry within the Parish.

Parish Council

  • With the Incumbent oversees the implementation of the Safe Ministry Policy at a parish level, particularly:
    • ensures safe physical environments for ministry
    • is responsible for the establishment and maintenance of Work Health and Safety in the parish in accordance with the Diocesan WHS policies
    • is responsible for parish compliance with the Diocesan Privacy Policy
  • May, with the concurrence of the Incumbent, appoint a Safe Ministry Officer

Safe Ministry Officer

  • To assist the Incumbent, Church Wardens and Parish Council implement the Safe Ministry Policy within their parish.

Parish Safety Policy Home

Policy updated – 6 July 2020