Independent Chair, Diocesan Safeguarding Oversight Group

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Can you help us continue our safeguarding journey? This is an opportunity to help to shape culture change around safeguarding provision and practice in the Church of England in Leicester and Leicestershire. The Independent Chair provides effective leadership of the Diocesan Safeguarding Oversight Group (DSOG), helping it to function effectively as it provides strategic oversight to our safeguarding work. This will involve chairing meetings involving senior clergy, lay representatives and statutory partners, agreeing the agenda, and ensuring that DSOG monitors implementation of action plans.

The Safeguarding Board for the Diocese is called the Diocesan Safeguarding Oversight Group (DSOG) and meets quarterly. The board is made up of representatives of external bodies (currently the police, education, and a major university Social Work faculty), parishes, and relevant diocesan and cathedral staff. The Director of Operations and Governance acts as secretary to DSOG. There are three sub-committees: Quality Assurance and Review Group (QARG), Executive Sub-Group, and Training Sub-Group. The Independent Chair will also act as Chair of QARG. DSOG reports annually to the Bishop’s Council, which is the Standing Committee of Diocesan Synod.

Summary of responsibilities (more information in role description)

1. To provide effective leadership to DSOG, including agreeing the agenda in liaison with the Director of Operations and Governance agreeing minutes, chairing the meetings and monitoring the follow-up actions.

2. To ensure DSOG discharges it role and functions in line with the terms of reference, including through its sub-committees which are chaired by officers.

3. To work with the DSA and senior staff to ensure the group has a strategic overview of safeguarding practice across the diocese in line House of Bishops’ policy and practice guidance, together with appropriate quality assurance and risk management processes. This will include ensuring that an up to date safeguarding strategy is in place.

4. To ensure that DSOG considers the needs and views of victims/survivors and those affected by abuse together with relevant advice.

5. To ensure that DSOG considers the needs and views of children, young people and vulnerable adults in its work.

6. To work with the DSA and senior staff to ensure that DSOG is adequately resourced; that there is sufficient capacity and diversity of skills set and experience/background of members. To be involved in the recruitment of DSOG members and of paid staff.

We’re looking for somebody who has

  • Relevant senior safeguarding experience
  • Experience of case reviews, risk management and strategic partnerships
  • Up to date knowledge of safeguarding practice and legislation
  • An interest in improving safeguarding practice in the church
  • A confident and empowering leadership style

The Diocese covers, with minor exceptions, the same geographical area as Leicester and Leicestershire. There are just over 300 churches served by around 120 licensed parish clergy, more than 150 people in authorized lay ministry roles, and several thousand in volunteer roles. We are currently embarking on an ambitious strategy for church growth which begins with six churches which have been designated as Resourcing Churches. The Diocese is also in the process of establishing the Community of the Tree of Life, which will call around 16 young people (aged 20-35) each year to commit themselves to prayer, Christian service and living in community.

We believe that safeguarding is everybody’s responsibility and are looking for an Independent Chair who can help us to ensure that culture change takes root and the our churches are truly a place where people are safe and can flourish.

Further details available from website

or contact: Andy Brockbank, 0116 261 5312,

Expressions of interest should be sent in writing with a CV, also to Andy Brockbank.

For an informal discussion about the role, please contact the current Independent Chair, Trevor Worsfold 07717 941 872 or Rachael Spiers, Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser, 0116 261 5341,

Closing date: Wednesday 21st November 2018
Anticipated interview date: Monday 3rd December 2018