Safe Church Commitment Statement

a couple of happy cartoon people, orange coloured

Safe Church Commitment Statement

We believe that all people, including children and vulnerable adults, are made in the image of God, and that our relationships with each other should express love, integrity, compassion and respect.

We recognise everyone who is involved in any of the Synod’s activities, services, events or programs has a right to feel and be safe. We therefore acknowledge our moral and legal responsibility to ensure the safety of children and young people involved with any Synod organisation.

As a church, we are committed to providing environments which are physically, emotionally and spiritually safe for all people including children, so that they may live life in all its fullness.

We have zero tolerance of any form of child abuse and will do all in our power to keep children and vulnerable adults safe from abuse. Protecting children and vulnerable adults is both an individual and a collective responsibility of the Uniting Church, and all who engage with it.

This commitment will be central to our decision-making and guide our practice. We will seek to understand our risk areas and develop strategies which aim to prevent and minimise risks to children and young people as far as possible, taking an approach of continuous improvement.

We are committed to implementing the Synod Safe Church Policy Framework, and to the ongoing development of a child safe organisation, in particular through implementation of the UCA Child Safe Principles.

We welcome feedback from anyone with an interest in this commitment, including children.

The UCA Child Safe Principles

The Synod will continue to embed a child safe culture through the implementation of the UCA Child Safe Principles, and so the following standards are met:

1. Child safety and wellbeing is embedded in organisational leadership, governance and culture

2. Children and young people are informed about their rights, participate in decisions affecting them and are taken seriously

3. Families and communities are informed and involved in promoting child safety and wellbeing

4. Diversity is respected and equity is promoted

5. Our people are suitable for work with children and committed to the values of child safety and wellbeing

6. Child-focused complaints processes are in place

7. Our people are provided with ongoing education and training on child safety

8. Physical and online environments promote safety

9. Policies and procedures document child safety

10. Review and continuous improvement of policy, procedure and practice.