Quakers recognise that every person, adult or child, is made in the image of God and thus deserving of respect, value and care.  This is reflected in our acknowledgement of “that of God in everyone”.

“How can we make the meeting a community in which each person is accepted and nurtured, and strangers are welcome?”

Advices and Queries 18

Children and young people need love and stability.  Are we doing all we can to uphold and sustain parents and children and others who carry the responsibility for providing this care?”                                                                                                                                   

Advices and Queries 24

Abuse is unacceptable. Everyone, including children and vulnerable adults, have a right to participate in Quaker communities without suffering harm. We are committed to keeping everyone safe.

Quakers recognise that of God in everyone.  All children, young people and adults deserve respect, value and appropriate care. Our care extends to people who are potentially vulnerable to abuse, and to those who may be perpetrators.  We recognise abuse can include physical, sexual and emotional abuse, neglect, and other forms.

Quakers may be open to risks because we foster a culture of welcome and trust for everyone. Very often an abuser is known or in a trusted relationship with the child or adult.  Abuse can be hidden and manipulative.

We all have a responsibility for safeguarding our children, young people, and adults at risk.  Ultimately, trustees hold responsibility on behalf of the area meeting.  One trustee is appointed as Area Meeting (AM) Safeguarding Coordinator and to act on behalf of the Area Meeting in dealing with an allegation or suspicion of abuse or neglect.  This includes liaising with statutory agencies which have the legal duty to investigate. Contact details for the Safeguarding Coordinators are on the poster displayed in each meeting house, and in the summary policy.  The main policy contains more contact details.

Other useful documents:

The Independent Enquiry into Child Sexual Abuse: Lessons for Religious Organisations – these are slides that were presented at a seminar for the Association of Church Accountant and Treasurers, but are not specifically about finance, and may be helpful for anyone in a pastoral role in a Quaker meeting.