What is the Child Safe Policy Framework?
The National Child Safe Policy Framework (the Framework) is a document that provides a framework within which the child safe policies of Uniting Church entities are to be developed or further evolved. The second iteration of the Framework takes into account the guidance of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, including its Creating Child Safe Institutions document, the report it commissioned from the University of NSW on the Key Elements of Child Safe Organisations and learnings from its published case studies and research. It also takes account of the experience of Uniting Church agencies in implementing the first framework and findings of recent inquiries.
The Framework has been endorsed by the Uniting Church Assembly Standing Committee.
The Uniting Church believes that God has given us the gift of the Spirit to "constantly correct that which is erroneous" in our life (Basis of Union, Para 18). Therefore, we will not hide from the truth, however painful that may be, and we will seek, with compassion and humility, to address whatever issues and challenges may emerge for us. We will say "sorry" to anyone who was sexually abused when in our care and, in consultation with those so affected, actively seek for ways to make amends for what happened in the past and identify how we can best offer support into the future. In all of this we are guided by the Word of God, remembering the teaching of the Apostle Paul: "Whatever is true, whatever is honourable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable... think about these things" (Philippians 4:8).