UPDATED: video about Safe Church – see below
Anglican Consultative Council 15 urges member churches to adopt the Safe Church Charter:
A meeting of Anglicans from around the world unanimously voted to call on their Churches to adopt and implement a charter protecting vulnerable people.
More than 80 members of the Anglican Communion gathered in Auckland’s Holy Trinity Cathedral for the 15th Anglican Consultative Council committed themselves to promoting the physical, emotional and spiritual welfare and safety of all people, especially children, young people and vulnerable adults, within their national and regional churches.
They voted to pass a resolution that called on their Churches “to adopt and implement the following Charter for the Safety of People within the Churches of the Anglican Communion, and report to the next meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council as to steps taken to adopt and implement the Charter.”
The issue of violence, particularly against women and children, has been on the agenda of the Anglican Communion since 1998 Lambeth Conference. Since that time, there has been a steady effort by Member Churches and Anglican Communion leaders to address protection issues, but this is the first time the whole Communion has been encouraged to adopt a charter.
See charter below:
Charter for the Safety of People within the Churches of the Anglican Communion
Pastoral support where there is abuse
1. We will provide pastoral support for the abused, their families, and affected parishes and church organisations by:
a. Listening with patience and compassion to their experiences and concerns;
b. Offering spiritual assistance and other forms of pastoral care.
Effective response to abuse
2. We will have and implement policies and procedures to respond properly to allegations of abuse made against clergy and other church personnel that include:
a. Making known within churches the procedure for making complaints;
b. Arranging pastoral care for any person making a complaint of abuse;
c. The impartial determination of allegations of abuse against clergy and other church personnel, and assessment of their suitability for future ministry;
d. Providing support for affected parishes and church organisations.
Practice of pastoral ministry
3. We will adopt and promote by education and training standards for the practice of pastoral ministry by clergy and other church personnel.
Suitability for ministry
4. We will have and implement policies and procedures to assess the suitability of persons for ordination as clergy or appointment to positions of responsibility in the church including checking their background.
Culture of safety
5. We will promote a culture of safety in parishes and church organisations by education and training to help clergy, other church personnel and participants prevent the occurrence of abuse.