The Story Museum welcomes visitors of all ages and abilities. The museum has a responsibility to ensure a safe and healthy environment for all users of our building and services be they trustees, staff, volunteers, visitors, contractors or tenants, regardless of age or physical ability.
This policy is written to ensure that all visitors and staff are guaranteed appropriate and safe treatment in all circumstances. This includes interactions on site, during outreach work and digital interactivity. While it is aimed specifically to protect children, young people and vulnerable adults from abuse, it should be considered to encompass a wide meaning of health and safety.
The Safeguarding Policy is supported by the Safeguarding Action Plan which ensures that all statutory requirements are met and where possible exceeded to promote a safe environment both for staff and visitors with specific focus on children, young people and vulnerable adults.
All trustees, staff, volunteers, visitors, contractors or tenants are responsible for supporting this policy.
Abuse is any action by another person – adult or child – that causes significant harm and encompasses the following: domestic abuse, sexual abuse, neglect, online abuse, physical abuse, emotional abuse, child sexual exploitation, female genital mutilation, bullying and cyberbullying, child trafficking, grooming and harmful sexual behaviour.
The NSPCC defines safeguarding as the action that is taken to promote the welfare of children and protect them from harm. Safeguarding means: protecting children from abuse and maltreatment, preventing harm to children’s health or development, and ensuring children grow up with the provision of safe and effective care.
For the purpose of this document the word ‘children’ refers to anyone up to the age of 18 and ‘young people’ refers specifically for the ages 11-25 years.
The Story Museum defines a vulnerable adult as a person who for any reason is, or feels, unable to take care of themselves or protect themselves against significant harm or exploitation.
The word ‘Staff’ includes employees, trustees, volunteers, freelancers, contractors and tenants.
Our objectives are to:
- Provide an environment which is safe and welcoming for children, young people and vulnerable adults and which protects them from all forms of abuse.
- Make sure that all staff are aware of the policies and procedures in place to know how to reduce risks in order to protect children, young people and vulnerable adults.
- To ensure that all staff know and respect the rights of all children, young people and vulnerable adults.
- Provide procedures and guidance for all staff for their own protection.
- Ensure the protection of children, young adults and vulnerable adults while at the museum or while taking part in museum-led activities off-site or via digital media.
- To provide the staff with the knowledge and confidence to carry out the safeguarding procedures.
The Story Museum and everyone who works for it is committed to safeguard children, young people and vulnerable adults by:
- Providing effective management for staff through induction and annual in service training, supervision and support
- Ensuring that all staff follow the museum’s written procedures and Code of Behaviour & Practice to set a culture of good practice.
- Ensure that all staff know the policies and are empowered to implement the procedures that support Safeguarding. These are:
- Alcohol & Drugs
- Communications Policy & Procedures
- Data Breach Policy
- Data Management Policy
- Disciplinary Policy & Procedures
- Employee Privacy Statement
- Equality Opportunities Policy
- Grievance Policy & Procedures
- Personal Harassment Policy & Procedures
- Safe Recruitment Policy & Procedures
- Secure Storage, Handling, Use, Retention and Disposal of Disclosures Policy & Procedures
- Social Medial Policy & Procedures
- Whistleblowing Policy & Procedures
- Ensure that all staff know how to implement the operational procedures in place to support Safeguarding. These are:
- Lost Child Procedures
- Found Child Procedures
- Lost & found child form
- Safeguarding Incident Procedures Safeguarding Incident Report Form
- Procedures for responding to allegations of abuse
- Safeguarding Children, Young People & Vulnerable Adults Code of Practice
- Visitor Complaints Procedure
- Code of Practice for Digital Interactivity
- Adopting safeguarding procedures for all staff which minimise any opportunity for abuse and establish appropriate treatment of children, young people and vulnerable adults. We expect the staff to uphold the following behaviour as outlined in the Safeguarding Code of Practice:
- Ensure your behaviour is appropriate at all times. This includes avoiding suggestive or offensive language and not engaging in inappropriate contact.
- Never intentionally be in a 1 to 1 situation with a child or vulnerable adult. If you find yourself in this situation, try to get out of it as soon as possible for example by finding a third party or moving locations.
- Value everyone as an individual – make children aware of safety and give them guidelines to follow so that they can take some responsibility for their own safety.
- Take any allegations or concerns about abuse seriously and refer concerns immediately following the museum procedures.
- Ensure that you know who the Designated Safeguarding Officer is and how to report any concerns that you might have.
- Use age appropriate resources for all activities.
- Work with colleagues to watch out for each other to ensure that they are not behaving in ways which could be misinterpreted.
- Keep yourself up to date with procedures and ask your manager or the DSO if you are unsure what to do.
- For all external meetings using a TSM Zoom account.
- Make promises or offer to keep a secret.
- Have favourites, or be perceived to have favourites
- Develop social relationships with children or vulnerable adults – this includes exchanging personal and social media information, gifts or arranging to meet outside working hours.
- Share personal zoom/digital account details.
- Ensuring all members of staff understand they have a duty to report concerns of abuse and know the procedures for doing so via the Reporting Disclosures procedures or Whistleblowing.
- Sharing information about concerns with agencies who need to know, and involving parents/carers as per the procedures detailed in the Procedures for reporting disclosures and responding to allegations of abuse.
- Following the Safe Recruitment procedures for all staff.
- Informing staff that not adhering to the policy and guidelines will lead to formal disciplinary action.
- Publicising our guidelines in our visitor information documentation.
- The Board Safeguarding Champion and the Designated Safeguarding Officers will review the Safeguarding Policy and Safeguarding Action Plan annually, implementing changes where necessary.
- Board Safeguarding Champion: Kate Sayer
- Designated Safeguarding Officer: Sarah Fussell, Director of Operations & Enterprise
- Deputy Designated Safeguarding Officer: Isy Mead, Head of Learning
The Story Museum reserves the right to amend policies and procedures without prior notice to reflect changes in legislation or significant changes in operational strategy. All Safeguarding Policies will be reviewed annually.
Reviewed: June 2023