Safeguarding means enabling people to live their lives free from harm, abuse and neglect and to have their health, well-being and human rights protected.

Governance

Protecting people and safeguarding responsibilities are a governance priority for the Trustee Management Committee. It is a fundamental part of operating as a charity for the public benefit.

As such all reasonable steps are taken to protect from harm people who come into contact with the Society.

This includes:

  • people who benefit from the Society’s work
  • other people who come into contact with the Society through its work
  • volunteers
  • staff (none)

Although the Society does not provide any direct services for those groups considered at risk e.g. children or vulnerable adults it may, through its activities and those of Affiliated Societies (organising and holding sheep dog trials), still come across instances of abuse.

The Society fully accepts its legal and moral obligations to exercise its duty care.

Every individual irrespective of age, gender, religion, ethnicity or disability has the right to be safe from abuse and to be treated with respect and dignity.

To comply with their legal duties the Society Trustees will react responsibly to all reports of safeguarding risks and incidents of abuse. All allegations of abuse are taken seriously and will be responded to swiftly and appropriately.

Risks to be aware of include

  • sexual harassment, abuse and exploitation  – rape and sexual assault or sexual acts to which there has not or could not been consent and/or the person was pressured into consenting
  • criminal exploitation
  • cyber abuse
  • modern day slavery
  • negligent treatment
  • self-neglect
  • physical abuse – hitting, slapping or inappropriate sanctions
  • emotional / psychological abuse – threats of harm, coercive control (coercive control is an act or pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation, intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish or frighten the victim), humiliation, verbal or racial abuse or emotional abuse
  • bullying or harassment
  • health and safety
  • commercial exploitation
  • extremism and radicalisation
  • forced marriage
  • human trafficking
  • female genital mutilation
  • discrimination on any of the grounds in the Equality Act 2010
  • a culture which allows or condones poor behaviour and poor accountability
  • people who abuse a position of trust they hold within the Society
  • data breaches, including those under General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR)

Reporting

Any Society member (Individual or Affiliated Society) who witnesses such instances of abuse during the organising and holding of sheep dog trials or has concerns should report them to the Secretary or a Trustee.

Action 

Trustees will report to the Secretary (the responsible person) who will record the concerns and in all cases report them to the Police for them to determine what further action, if any, to take.

Should the abuse involve any Officer / Trustee of the Society the incident will also be reported to the Charity Commission as regulator by an instructed member of the Trustee’s Management Committee.

A detailed record of the concerns and all actions taken will be maintained by the Secretary or a nominated Trustee and shared with the appropriate agencies as necessary. It will be held securely for as long as advised by the enforcement agencies / regulators.

Monitoring

This policy and its implementation is reviewed annually by the Trustees Management Committee to ensure the Society –

  • has appropriate policies and procedures in place, which are followed by all trustees, volunteers and beneficiaries
  • checks that people are suitable to act in their roles
  • knows how to spot and handle concerns in a full and open manner
  • has a clear system of referring or reporting to relevant organisations as soon as concerns are suspected or identified
  • sets out risks and how they will be managed in a risk register which is regularly reviewed
  • follows statutory guidance, good practice guidance and legislation relevant to their charity: this guidance links to the main sources of information
  • is quick to respond to concerns and carry out appropriate investigations
  • does not ignore harm or downplay failures
  • has a balanced Trustee Management Committee and does not let one trustee dominate its work i.e. trustees should work together
  • makes sure protecting people from harm is central to its culture
  • has enough resources for safeguarding and protecting people
  • conducts periodic reviews of safeguarding policies, procedures and practice