The Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) has been commissioned to undertake an audit of the safeguarding arrangements of each diocese of the Church of England. The aim of the audit is to work together to understand safeguarding and to support improvements being made in the Diocese.
The audit – part of a project commissioned by the House of Bishops’ – was tasked to review a number of topics, including safeguarding management, the work of Diocesan Safeguarding Advisers (DSAs), casework, training and safer recruitment.
The audit of the Diocese of Leeds took place between the 11 and 13 October 2016, swiftly following the major move to the new Diocesan Office in York Place, Leeds. The report can be downloaded in full below.
The auditors commended the diocese on a number of aspects of its safeguarding work, commenting that the culture in the diocese 'is open to learning and taking safeguarding forward'. The report acknowledges that a strong safeguarding lead is provided by the Bishop and his staff team and comments upon the range of skills gathered by the DSAs from their previous professional experience, resulting in a good quality service being provided to the diocese. Bishop Nick comments that 'the auditors have recognised the seriousness with which we address the work of safeguarding and I’m delighted that, under the most demanding of circumstances, they have commended the Diocese and the Safeguarding Team on the significant amount of progress made. We must continue to build on progress made'.
The report sets out a number of considerations for the diocese. The term ‘considerations’ is used in the SCIE Learning Together methodology as it is important that each diocese decides exactly how to implement the improvements indicated; this is likely to be different from place to place. The Diocese of Leeds has carefully considered each of the considerations and has provided a response to each one.
The Considerations and Response can be downloaded below.
 SCIE is a leading improvement support agency and an independent charity working with adults’, families and children’s care and support services across the UK.