MedicHut abides by the duty of care to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and young people and is committed to safeguarding practice that reflects statutory responsibilities, government guidance and complies with best practice requirements.
- We recognise the welfare of children is paramount in all the work we do and in all the decisions we take
- All children, regardless of age, disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex, or sexual orientation have an equal right to protection from all types of harm or abuse
- Some children are additionally vulnerable because of the impact of previous experiences, their level of dependency, communication needs or other issues
- Working in partnership with children, young people, their parents, carers and other agencies is essential in promoting young people’s welfare.
- Protect children and young people who receive MedicHut’s services from harm. This includes the children of adults who use our services
- Provide staff and volunteers, as well as children and young people and their families, with the overarching principles that guide our approach to child protection.
This policy applies to anyone working on behalf of MedicHut, including volunteers. Failure to comply with the policy and related procedures will be addressed without delay and may ultimately result in dismissal/exclusion from the organisation.
The Children Act 1989 definition of a child is: anyone who has not yet reached their 18th birthday, even if they are living independently, are a member of the armed forces or are in hospital.
Adult at Risk: An adult who has needs for care and support (whether or not the authority is meeting any of those needs), is experiencing, or is at risk of, abuse or neglect, and as a result of those needs is unable to protect himself or herself against the abuse or neglect or the risk of it.
Child and Adult Abuse: Children and adults may be vulnerable to neglect and abuse or exploitation from within their family and from individuals they come across in their daily lives. There are 4 main categories of abuse, which are: sexual, physical, emotional abuse, and neglect. It is important to be aware of more specific types of abuse that fall within these categories:
- Bullying and cyberbullying
- Child sexual exploitation
- Child Criminal exploitation
- Child trafficking
- Domestic abuse
- Female genital mutilation
- Historical abuse
- Online abuse
Safeguarding children: Safeguarding children is defined in Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018 as:
- Protecting children from maltreatment
- Preventing impairment of children’s health or development
- Ensuring that children are growing up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care.
- Taking action to enable all children to have the best outcomes.
This policy has been drawn up on the basis of legislation, policy and guidance that seeks to protect children in England. MedicHut is committed to safeguarding children, based on principles in:
- Keeping Children Safe in Education (2019)
- The Children Act 1989 (and 2004 amendment)
- Working Together to Safeguard Children (2018)
- Education Act 2002
MedicHut should have in place arrangements that reflect the importance of safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people as well as vulnerable adults.
Training and Awareness
MedicHut will ensure an appropriate level of safeguarding training is available to its Trustees, Employees, Volunteers and any relevant persons linked to the organisation who requires it (e.g. contractors).
For all employees who are working or volunteering with children, this requires them as a minimum to have awareness training that enables them to:
- Understand what safeguarding is and their role in safeguarding children
- Recognise a child potentially in need of safeguarding and take action
- Understand how to report a safeguarding alert
- Understand dignity and respect when working with children
- Have knowledge of the Safeguarding Policy
Confidentiality and Information Sharing
MedicHut expects all employees, volunteers and trustees to maintain confidentiality. Information will only be shared in line with the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) and Data Protection.
However, information should be shared with the Local Authority if a child is deemed to be at risk of harm or contact the police if they are in immediate danger, or a crime has been committed.
A written record must be kept about any concern regarding a child or adult with safeguarding needs. This must include details of the person involved, the nature of the concern and the actions taken, decision made and why they were made. All records must be signed, dated, and sent without delay to the Designated Safeguarding Lead. All records must be securely and confidentially stored in line with General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR).
Safe Recruitment & Selection
MedicHut is committed to safe employment and safe recruitment practices, that reduce the risk of harm to children from people unsuitable to work with them or have contact with them.
MedicHut has policies and procedures that cover the recruitment of all Trustees, employees and volunteers. All individuals working on behalf of MedicHut must have a valid, full, and up-to-date DBS certificate. This is checked by the organisation prior to accepting any employment, and must be renewed regularly to ensure its validity.
Use of Mobile Phones, Social Media and Digital Technology
All employees, trustees and volunteers should understand that:
- It is unlawful to photograph children and young people without the explicit consent of the person with parental responsibilities.
- There should be no communication with children or adults outside of the designated tutoring sessions or webinars, except with prior approval from MedicHut. Any outside communication will occur through our trust’s email addresses or within a WhatsApp group with the MedicHut Designated Safeguarding Lead.
- They should not provide personal contact details to any children or young people, nor should they request contact details.
- They should not share any social media contact details, nor should they converse with children known to attend lessons provided by MedicHut on any social media.
- They should contact the Designated Safeguarding Lead immediately if any contact with a child is made on any platform outside of the designated platforms used for teaching, i.e. Zoom.
It is important that people within MedicHut have the confidence to come forward to speak or act if they are unhappy with anything. Whistle blowing occurs when a person raises a concern about dangerous or illegal activity, or any wrong-doing within their organisation. This includes concerns about another employee or volunteer. There is also a requirement by MedicHut to protect whistleblowers.
Any safeguarding concern reported to the Designating Safeguarding Lead will be investigated immediately and action will be taken to ensure prompt safety of the child or adult involved.
Any individual representing MedicHut who is found to be in breach of the safeguarding policy will be suspended without delay, and a final decision will be made regarding return to work once a thorough investigation is completed. For minor or unintentional breaches, the individual may need to review the safeguarding policy and participate in additional safeguarding training prior to returning to work.
If any illegal action takes place outside of the bounds of the safeguarding policy, this will be reported to the police and other relevant authorities without delay.