Safeguarding Policy

Dorset Council is committed to delivering services which ensure that children and young people in Dorset will be happy and safe and have opportunities to reach their goals as responsible members of their community. We want to make Dorset a better place for all children and young people. We will ensure that children and young people are at the heart of all we do. The purpose of this statement on safeguarding is to:

  • Demonstrate a commitment to the protection of children and young people who receive services from Dorset Council
  • Provide the context for staff to work with clear guidelines on how concerns about children and young people should be dealt with (Dorset, Bournemouth and Poole Inter-Agency Safeguarding Procedures)
  • Enable the council to be a ‘safe’ organisation through the application of the Standards agreed by Dorset Safeguarding Children Board.

Dorset Council believes that it is always unacceptable for a child or young person to experience abuse of any kind. We recognise our responsibility to safeguard and promote the welfare of all children and young people and we are committed to practice which ensures this. We recognise that:

  • the welfare of the child/young person is paramount
  • children regardless of age, disability, gender, racial heritage, religious belief, sexual orientation or identity have the right to equal protection from all types of harm or abuse
  • working in partnership with children, young people, their families and other agencies is essential to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and young people

In order to achieve the standards of an organisation committed to safeguarding, the council has developed a number of procedures which all staff are expected to comply with. These relate to/include:

  • Child protection practice (including information-sharing)
  • Recruitment and selection practice
  • Induction, training and supervision
  • A code of conduct
  • Whistle blowing
  • Complaints and representations
  • Equal opportunities/diversity
  • Disciplinary and capability issues
  • The management of allegations against people who work with children

In order to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and young people in Dorset we will:

  • Listen to children, young people and their families and involve them in decisions that affect them, make sure our staff and anyone who works on our behalf, are aware of and committed to the Safeguarding Policy and Procedures.
  • Develop practice across Directorates which aims to achieve compliance with the Standards set by Dorset Safeguarding Children Board Safeguarding Standards.
  • Work constantly with individuals or organisations working with children on a paid or voluntary basis to ensure that there are robust measures in place to keep children safe and to respond to any concerns or allegations that are raised.

This policy statement will be reviewed on a three-yearly basis.