The approach to safeguarding is underpinned by Gospel values as an integral part of the life and ministry of the Church in the Diocese of Sale.
“[W]hatsoever you do to the least of my brothers you do unto me” (Matthew 25:4).
There are three overarching safeguarding standards in which the Catholic Diocese of Sale operates under. The focus is the promotion of a sustained culture of constant vigilance. All Diocesan Policies and Guidelines are underpinned by these standards.
The three sets of standards that the Diocese is committed to are the:
There is considerable congruency between the standards and indeed the Victorian Child Safe Standards are in the process of moving to a new set of standards to reflect the National Principles for Child Safe Organisations.
The National Catholic Safeguarding Standards have been developed to encompass the Principles set out for Child Safe Organisations but it also includes ‘Adults at risk’ where national standards have not yet been developed.
There are currently seven Child Safe Standards that organisations need to implement. Commencing 1 July 2022, there will be eleven new Child Safe Standards which will replace the current Victorian seven standards and principles. These changes have been made to support greater national consistency, reflecting the National Principles for a Child Safe Organisation developed following the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
The Australian Catholic Safeguarding Limited has produced the National Catholic Safeguarding Standards which safeguards both children and adults at risk. The addition of adults at risk is in the draft stage and will be released by the end of 2021.
There are ten standards in which the Diocese and Parishes work towards attaining, evidenced by reviews and audits.
The National Principles for Child Safe Organisations came into effect from 1 February 2019 and was endorsed by the Council of Australian Governments, including the Prime Minister and state and territory First Ministers.