Policy and practice guidance

Please visit our Safeguarding e-manual for recently revised Guidance.  

All the policy and practice guidance on this page has been approved by the House of Bishops and must, where relevant, be followed by all Church Bodies* and Church Officers**.

Please note under section 5 of the Safeguarding and Clergy Discipline Measure 2016*** all authorised clergy, bishops, archdeacons, licensed readers and lay workers, churchwardens and PCCs must have 'due regard' to safeguarding guidance issued by the House of Bishops (this will include both policy and practice guidance). A duty to have 'due regard' to guidance means that the person under the duty is not free to disregard it but is required to follow it unless there are cogent reasons for not doing so. ('Cogent' for this purpose means clear, logical and convincing.) Failure by clergy to comply with the duty imposed by the 2016 Measure may result in disciplinary action.

*Church Bodies includes PCCs, diocesan bodies, cathedrals, religious communities, theological training institutions and the National Church Institutions. This policy will apply to the whole of the provinces of Canterbury and York (including the Diocese in Europe subject to local variations/modifications). There is also an expectation that the policy will apply to the Channel Islands and Sodor and Man unless there is specific local legislation in a jurisdiction that would prevent adoption.

**A "Church Officer" is anyone appointed/elected by or on behalf of the Church to a post or role, whether they are ordained or lay, paid or unpaid.

***The Safeguarding and Clergy Discipline Measure 2016 applies to the whole of the provinces of Canterbury and York (including the Diocese in Europe subject to local variations/modifications), with the exception of the Channel Islands and Sodor and Man. In order to extend the 2016 Measure to the Channel Islands or Sodor and Man legislation will need to be passed by the relevant island jurisdictions in accordance with section 12 of that Measure.

Practice Guidance

For templates and resources relating to safeguarding policy and practice guidance, including those referenced in the Parish Safeguarding Handbook and Safer Working Practice, please see here. 

Past Cases Review 2 (PCR2)

Responding Well

Safer Recruitment

Please go to the e-manual for the revised Safer Recruitment and Practice Guidance. 


Serious Incident Reporting

The Church has worked with the Charity Commission to agree bespoke guidance for DBFs, PCCs, Religious Communities, DBEs and Cathedrals on how to identify and report a safeguarding Serious Incident to the Charity Commission.  

All individual Serious Incidents must be reported to the Charity Commission using the new online form, which can be accessed on their website. 

The up to date House of Bishops’ bespoke guidance on safeguarding Serious Incident Reporting is set out below for each entity.

Updated supporting FAQs and example template delegation resolutions are also available below to explain and support the implementation of this guidance. The FAQs and template delegations do NOT form part of the guidance.

Any DBFs which bulk report Safeguarding Serious Incidents must use a Charity Commission bespoke template:


Other Key Guidance 

Joint Practice Guidance with The Methodist Church


Policy Statements