On 19 December 2017, the Charity Commission issued a regulatory alert reminding charities to review their safeguarding and governance arrangements. It also published its revised strategy for dealing with safeguarding issues in charities on 6 December 2017.
Good governance should be a priority for all charities and safeguarding is a key part of this. Whether your charity works with vulnerable beneficiaries and/or groups, or works in vulnerable areas, or otherwise, all charities should be aware of their safeguarding responsibilities. Additionally, they should ensure that they have appropriate policies and procedures in place and that all staff, volunteers and other third parties are aware of and comply with them.
The press release was made following a number of recent serious incidents and reports made to the Commission. It reminds charities that trustees are responsible for ensuring that appropriate processes are in place and for putting things right if they go wrong. The alert is specifically advising trustees to:
- “review their charity’s safeguarding governance and management arrangements and performance if they have not done so within the last 12 months.
- contact the Commission about safeguarding issues, or serious safeguarding incidents, complaints or allegations which have not previously been disclosed to the regulator or the appropriate authorities.”
The Commission’s updated strategy on safeguarding can be viewed here.