Urgent Safeguarding Concerns
If you are concerned about the welfare of a child or adult at risk, do not delay in contacting the police, using 999 if a child or adult is believed to be in immediate danger. If there is no immediate danger, then please contact the Safeguarding Office directly.
Reporting Safeguarding Concerns
If you are in any role within the Catholic Church in England and Wales, you must refer allegations directly to the safeguarding office for your diocese or religious congregation, or directly to the Police.
Any referrals made directly to the Police must also be sent to the Diocese of Westminster Safeguarding office at the same time. The Safeguarding office will also inform the Parish Safeguarding Representative.
If you are a member of the public, please refer allegations directly to the police and also to the Diocese of Westminster Safeguarding Office.
Responding to your concerns
The Diocese of Westminster Safeguarding Team is available Monday to Friday 9 am – 5 pm and can be contacted via:
Email: Direct any concerns via email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone: You can also report your concerns by speaking to one of our Safeguarding Officers:
Eithne Atterbury: email@example.com / 020 7798 9096 / 07851 250 899
Frederick Coombs: firstname.lastname@example.org / 0207 798 9186 / 07851 250 897
Anyone who brings concerns or allegations to the notice of the Church will be responded to sensitively, respectfully and seriously. All concerns and allegations will be addressed using the Church’s national procedures and in a timely manner.
The Catholic Safeguarding Standard Agency can also be contacted on 0207 901 1920 or via email at email@example.com
Referring to Statutory Agencies
It is the policy of the Catholic Church in England and Wales to report all allegations of abuse to statutory authorities, regardless of whether the abuse occurred recently or in the past, or whether the accused person is living or deceased.
If you are a survivor and do not wish for your details to be shared with the statutory authorities, then the referral can be made anonymously giving the details of the accused person only.
If you are a survivor of abuse please take a look at our Support for Survivors page where you will find further information about how to report abuse and also what to expect from the Diocese of Westminster Safeguarding Team.
You can also find information in our Hurt by Abuse Leaflet – this is the official leaflet for the Westminster Diocese which contains helpful information for survivors of abuse.
Finding Help and Support Out of Hours
The Diocesan Safeguarding Team is committed to responding to safeguarding concerns, providing support and advice. However, we are unable to offer an emergency or 24-hour service.
Therefore, if you have a concern or wish to speak to somebody outside of office hours, please contact one of the agencies below who are either available on a 24-hour basis, or through the following specialist helplines and services below:
If you have an immediate concern that a child or adult is in danger contact the police on 999.
You can also contact them via their non-emergency number 101, 24 hours a day 7 days a week.
Local Authority - Social Services
You can also report your concerns to your local children and adult services.
Most local authorities run an out-of-hours helpline, details of which can be found on their website.
To find out who is your Local Authority, please use the following link: https://www.gov.uk/find-local-council
External National helplines:
- NSPCC: 0808 800 5000, free helpline. Call if you are worried about a child. Monday to Friday 8am – 10pm and at weekends 9am – 6pm.
- Childline (NSPCC): 0800 1111, the line is free and open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call if you are a child or young person and are worried about anything - no problem is too big or too small.
- National Domestic Violence Helpline: 0808 2000 247, free phone 24-hours. Call if you are experiencing domestic abuse.
- Samaritans: 116 123, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Call if you feel you are struggling to cope and need someone to talk to.
- Hourglass (Action on Elder Abuse) : 0808 808 8141, free phone Monday to Friday 9-5pm. Free text 078 6005 2906. Support to an older person or anyone concerned about an older person who is at risk.
- The Survivors Trust: 0808 801 0818, free phone Monday to Thursday: 10am-12.30pm, 1.30pm-5.30pm & 6pm-8pm; Friday: 10am-12.30pm & 1.30pm-5.30pm; Saturday: 10am-1pm; Sunday: 5pm-8pm. Support and empower survivors of rape, sexual violence and childhood sexual abuse.
- NAPAC: 0808 801 0331 - freephone Monday to Thursday: 10am – 9pm; Friday: 10am – 6pm; Saturday and Sunday – Closed. Offers support to adult survivors of all types of childhood abuse, including physical, sexual, emotional abuse or neglect.
Throughout our section, you will find links to external websites. Every effort is made to keep the website up and running smoothly and ensure these links are accurate, up to date, and relevant. However, the Safeguarding Department cannot take responsibility for pages maintained by external providers.
If you come across any external links that do not work, we would be grateful if you could report them to firstname.lastname@example.org