Skip to main content


Atrium Child Protection Policy.

Atrium Child Protection Policy

Download Document
Download or Print This Policy Document
Download Document

Policy and Key Information


Atrium has to ensure that our employees, practitioners and trainees do no harm to children, young people or vulnerable adults 1 (together referred to as ‘vulnerable people’ under this policy); that they do not expose them to the risk of discrimination, neglect, harm and abuse; and that any concerns the organisation has about the safety of vulnerable people within the communities in which we work, are dealt with and reported to the appropriate authorities.

All such concerns are channelled through our safeguarding lead Alex Wyld (Forensic)or Sara Ireland (Workplace/Community and members of the public). Child protection is a central part of but not separate to safeguarding. It is the process of protecting individual children identified as either suffering or at risk of significant harm as a result of abuse or programme of work. It also includes measures and structures designed to prevent and respond to abuse. Over recent years, there has been increasing recognition of the way in which children, young people and vulnerable adults can be at risk of discrimination, neglect, abuse and exploitation by those who are in positions of trust and power over them, including through international development activities. Atrium has an obligation to put in place all reasonable safeguarding measures to ensure, as far as possible, the safety and protection of children, young people and vulnerable adults and that we work closely with KEY agencies in accordance with their advice.


The purpose of this policy and associated procedures is to provide clarity to ALL on how they should engage with children, young people and vulnerable adults when working for, on behalf of, or in self employment roles with Atrium clients. It is also to help us make sure that employees, practitioners and trainees/volunteers are protected. It is intended to help us to have a common understanding of safeguarding issues, develop good practice across the diverse and complex areas in which we operate and thereby increase accountability in this crucial aspect of our work.

Please note that Child protection policies and processes may be changed in each specific contract to meet the needs of each service and practitioners are responsible for making sure they understand the safeguarding expectation for each pathway.

Any breach of this policy will be treated as a disciplinary matter, which may result in immediate termination of employment or contract, withdrawal of entitlement to practice with Atrium, and reporting to the police, relevant regulatory authority or other body.

Definitions Abuse

A violation of an individual’s human and civil rights by any other person or persons. It can take the form of physical, psychological, financial or sexual abuse, neglect or negligent treatment or commercial or other exploitation, resulting in actual or potential harm to the health, survival, development or dignity of a child, young person or vulnerable adult. Abuse can be a single act or repeated acts and can be unintentional or deliberate. Abuse often involves criminal acts.

Discriminatory abuse – abuse motivated by a vulnerable person’s age, race, nationality, sex, sexual orientation, disability, or other personal characteristic.

Financial or material abuse – including theft, fraud, exploitation, pressure in connection with wills, property or inheritance or financial transactions, or the misuse or misappropriation of property, possessions or benefits.

Neglect – the persistent failure to meet a vulnerable person’s basic physical and/or psychological needs, likely to result in the serious impairment of his/her health or development. Examples include failure to provide adequate food, clothing and shelter, failure to protect them from physical or psychological harm or danger; failure to ensure adequate supervision (including the use of inadequate care-givers); or failure to ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment. It may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to, a vulnerable person’s basic emotional needs.

Physical abuse – includes hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning or scalding, drowning, suffocating or otherwise causing physical harm, misuse of medication, restraint, or inappropriate sanctions.

Psychological abuse – includes emotional abuse, threats of harm or abandonment, deprivation of contact, humiliation, blaming, controlling, intimidation, coercion, harassment, verbal abuse, isolation or withdrawal from services or supportive networks. Examples include not giving a vulnerable person opportunities to express their views, deliberately silencing them or ‘making fun’ of what they say or how they communicate. It may feature age or developmentally inappropriate expectations being imposed on a vulnerable person, which may include interactions that are beyond a vulnerable person’s developmental capability. It may involve serious bullying (including cyber bullying), or the exploitation or corruption of a vulnerable person.

Sexual abuse – involves forcing, enticing or coercing someone to take part in sexual activities, whether or not the vulnerable person is aware of what is happening. The activities may involve physical contact, including assault by penetration (for example, rape or oral sex) or non-penetrative acts such as masturbation, kissing, rubbing and touching outside of clothing. They may also include non-contact activities, such as involving a vulnerable person in looking at, or in the production of, sexual images, watching sexual activities, encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways, or grooming a child in preparation for abuse (including via the internet). Sexual abuse can be carried out by adults or other children.

Child – A child as anyone under the age of 18 years. It is widely recognised that children are generally more vulnerable to abuse and exploitation due to factors such as age, gender, social and economic status, developmental stage, and dependence on others.

Vulnerable person/people – for the purposes of this policy this is an umbrella term which covers children, young people and vulnerable adults. 3 Vulnerable adult – a person, 18 years and above, who by reason of disability, age, gender, social and economic status, or illness, the context they are in, may be unable to take care of or to protect him or herself against abuse, harm or exploitation.

This policy demonstrates how Atrium will meet its legal obligations
  • a) On what they can expect us to do to protect and safeguard vulnerable people.
  • b) That they are able to safely voice any concerns through an established procedure.
  • c) That all reports of abuse or potential abuse are dealt with in a serious and effective manner.
  • d) That there is an efficient recording and monitoring system in place.
  • e) That employees, practitioners receive appropriate induction on safeguarding.
  • f) That a robust ‘safe’ recruitment procedure is in place.

Atrium has zero tolerance against abuse and exploitation of children and young people. Atrium also recognises that safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility and that it has an obligation to put in place reasonable measures to ensure, as far as possible, the safety and wellbeing of vulnerable people with whom we work or who come into our focus as a result of work with those connected to them.

We believe
  • Everyone has an equal right to protection from abuse and exploitation regardless of age, race, sex, sexual orientation, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy or having a child, gender reassignment, language, religion, political or other opinion, national, ethnic or social origin, property, disability, birth or other status.
  • The best interests of the vulnerable child are paramount and shall be the primary consideration in our decision making.
  • Atrium will take responsibility to meet our obligations regarding our duty of care towards vulnerable children and young people and take action where we believe that a child or the young person is at risk or is actually harmed.
  • Atrium will ensure that employees, practitioners and trainees are inducted in our Safeguarding Standards and procedures as a key part of the recruitment and on boarding process.
  • Atrium will ensure that all partners are informed and in compliance with our Safeguarding Standards.
  • When working with or through KEY partners or subcontracted agencies with statutory or assigned roles we will ensure that their safeguarding procedures are consistent and in line with the principles and approaches set out in this policy.
  • Atrium recognises that an element of risk exists, and while we may never be able to totally remove this, we need to do all we can to reduce it or limit its impact.
  • Atrium respects confidentiality and has a responsibility to protect sensitive personal data. Information should only be shared and handled on a need-to-know basis, that is, access to the information must be necessary for the conduct of one’s official role duties. Only individuals who have legitimate reasons to access the information are allowed to receive it.
  • Atrium commits to monitoring the implementation of the safeguarding policy. This policy will be reviewed every three years and earlier if necessary.
  • Atrium commits to work in a way that is also culturally sensitive and that respect the diverse nature of the people we work with. We recognise that there are many different ways of thinking and taking care of children and young people and making sure they are protected.
  • All employees, practitioners and trainees are obliged to follow this policy and maintain an environment that prevents exploitation and abuse, and which encourages reporting of breaches of this policy using the appropriate procedures. All people working with Atrium will:
  • Read, understand, and adhere to the Safeguarding Policy and communicate with their safeguarding lead in the event of any concerns as soon as it is safe to do so. If it is an acute emergency, staff will contact the emergency services.
  • Follow Atrium clinical processes being alert to risk and indicators of harm using Atrium’s assessment guidance from triage to sessional risk assessments.
  • Strive to promote a zero-tolerance approach to discrimination, sexual harassment and abuse in all working environments.
  • Strive to develop relationships with all stakeholders which are based on equality, trust, respect and honesty.
  • Place the safety and welfare of children and vulnerable people above all other considerations.
  • Report any concerns they may have about the welfare of a child or vulnerable person.
  • Report any concerns they may have about the behaviour of other practitioners or employees and trainees in relation to safeguarding.
Conditions have to be met when we work directly and remotely with children in a one-to-one situation.
  • We make sure that the parent has agreed for this work to take place and agreed to work with us to safeguard the child (unless they are deemed to be a risk to the child, in which case an online or telephone therapy session is not appropriate, and Atrium will notify appropriate agency).
  • If the child has not agreed to involve their parent in their work and/or safety planning, we cannot work with the child.
  • We discuss our consent to share agreement with the child and agree the limits of confidentiality with parent and child.
In addition,
  • Atrium only works with children where they have a registered GP to act as a safeguarding partner and where we have key biographical details such as contact address etc.
  • Atrium does not work with children who are already under specialist services unless (exceptionally) specific agreements are agreed in the interest of the child.
  • All practitioners, employees and practitioners agree to act with integrity and in accordance with our code of conduct avoiding any behaviours which could be harmful to children including not keeping a secret which has implications for their safety or the safety of other young people.
  • Managers are responsible for ensuring employees, practitioners and trainees are aware of the policy and are supported to implement and work in accordance with it, as well as creating a management culture that encourages a focus on safeguarding. They must ensure that they are responsive, acting immediately if they become aware of any safeguarding concerns, and supportive towards colleagues who are concerned for children or who complain about breaches in this policy.
  • Advice, support and training on safeguarding will be provided to all staff on induction into Atrium including:
  • What they should do in the event of a disclosure from a child or an indication that a parent or another adult might be a risk to the child? How to manage a disclosure and where to share those concerns.
  • What to do if they have concerns about the welfare of a child
  • How to recognise signs of abuse
  • Where to find local social care and safeguarding contacts on CORE front page for relevant contracts
  • What to do if they have concerns about a colleague in our organisation or partner organisation
  • Where to go for advice and support within the organisation
  • Designated Safeguarding Officers –Sara and/or Becky. Sara is the lead designated safeguarding officer is responsible for:
  • monitoring and recording safeguarding concerns
  • ensuring referrals to the relevant authorities happen without delay.
  • updating safeguarding training for all staff
  • ensuring this policy is reviewed every 3 years or earlier if necessary.
  • ensuring it is implemented throughout the organisation and safeguarding training given
  • ensuring monitoring and recording procedures are implemented.
Overview Recruitment and Selection:
  • Safe recruitment and vetting processes are followed for all
  • Where an employee, volunteer or partner is engaged in ‘regulated activity’ (direct work with vulnerable individuals), a criminal background check will be undertaken as part of the recruitment process. For some individuals already working with the NHS or Local government, confirmation of this DBS will be sought.
  • All employees and volunteers must sign and abide by this safeguarding policy and the Code of Conduct. The code sets out the standards of practice we expect of all atrium staff and practitioners – in terms professional competence, integrity, acting as a representative and in safeguarding – which support our vision, mission and values.
  • Induction and Support: Ensure that clear processes for reporting and dealing with safeguarding concerns and incidents are widely communicated, regularly reviewed and consistently applied.
  • Data Protection Ensure that personal information is kept confidential unless we have the agreement of the individual and/or their parent/guardian, except where it is necessary to pass this to a specialised child welfare or law enforcement agency in relation to a safeguarding incident. Where staff are contracted by other employers, or when working with partners, sub contracted agencies, Atrium will brief them on our safeguarding policy and ask for information on how the organisation works to protect vulnerable children and young people and ensure that they meet our Safeguarding Standards. Atrium has a policy never to use actual names, images, including photographs and recordings (the ‘Social Media Policy’). This should be applied in all situations.
  • Designated Safeguarding Officers are responsible for ensuring that the reporting procedure is followed so that suspected or actual cases of abuse are responded to appropriately and consistently and referred to the relevant statutory authority. To ensure that all such situations are handled appropriately and effectively:
  • It is essential that referrals are made to the relevant key agency to ensure that appropriate protection and support is given to the vulnerable individual, and that any evidence is collected in accordance with the law.
  • All sensitive and personal data must be kept confidential (including the names of anyone who makes a report of abuse) and be shared on a strictly ‘need to know’ basis, that is, access must be necessary for the conduct of one’s official duties.

Tel: 07936395128

Close Menu

Get in Touch

Atrium Clinic
642 London Road

Telephone: 01702-332857

Get in Touch