15.1 Managing Allegations Against Staff and Volunteers
Last updated 21/10/2021
Managing Allegations - Introduction
Despite following safer recruitment practices there will be occasions when allegations are made about staff, carers or volunteers working with children. All organisations which have employees or volunteers working with children should therefore have clear and accessible policies and procedures, consistent with Sefton’s Safeguarding Children Procedures, which explain what should happen when allegations against members of the children’s workforce are raised.
The term ‘employer’ is used throughout these procedures to refer to organisations that have a working relationship with the individual subject of the allegation. This includes organisations that use the services of volunteers, or people who are self employed; service providers; voluntary organisations; employment agencies; contractors; fostering services and regulatory bodies such as Ofsted.
An individual subject of an allegation may be employed by more than one organisation. For example, they may be working in a setting providing temporary cover via an agency, or they may be employed by a contractor. In such circumstances all employers will be involved in dealing with the allegation.
These procedures are based on the guidance for dealing with allegations detailed in Working Together to Safeguard Children, Keeping Children Safe in Education and Organisational Responsibilities Section 11 of the Children Act 2004.
All allegations against people who work with children, whether in a paid or unpaid capacity, must be taken seriously. This procedure should be applied when there is an allegation that a person who works with children has:
- Behaved in a way that has harmed a child, or may have harmed a child;
- Possibly committed a criminal offence against or related to a child;
- Behaved towards a child or children in a way that indicates they may pose a risk of harm to children; or
- Behaved or may have behaved in a way that indicates they may not be suitable to work with children.