Support Page

Safeguarding Policy

Safeguarding Children & Young People
Policy and Procedures

Designated Safeguarding Lead: Lily Eastwood, Director of Learning

Review date: September 2022

Next review date: August 2023

Signed off by: Jude Williams, CEO:


1) Policy Statement 2

2) People responsible for safeguarding. 3

3) Definitions. 4

4) Code of Conduct 5

5) DBS Checking. 6

6) Disclosure or concerning observation procedure. 8

a) What to do if someone makes a disclosure to a member of The Literacy Pirates staff, or a volunteer 8

b) Checklist for reporting suspected abuse. 9

c) Reporting Safeguarding Concerns Flowchart 10

7) Safeguarding Adults Policy. 10

8) Internal enquiries and suspension. 11

9) Whistle-blowing Policy. 12

10) Rights and Confidentiality. 13

11) Prevention, Recruitment and Training. 13

12) Additional guidance. 14

E-safety. 14

Anti-bullying. 15

Child Sexual Exploitation. 16

FGM.. 16

Prevent 16

“Young Crewmates“. 16

13) Complaints Procedure. 16

14) Relevant Contact Details. 17

15) Review and Monitoring Procedures. 17

Appendix 1: local safeguarding contacts. 18

Hackney. 18

Haringey. 18

Staff members should read this policy alongside:

- The staff handbook on child protection and safeguarding (containing day-to-day procedures specifically for staff members);

- The guide for Designated Safeguarding Lead and Deputies;

- The DBS policy and procedure;

- Trustees Safeguarding Responsibility Policy;

- The Privacy Policy;

- The Data Protection Policy.

- The Coronavirus lockdown, virtual ship training for staff PowerPoint

- Volunteer agreement for when volunteering on the virtual ship

- The parent/carer agreement for children attending the virtual ship

1) Policy Statement

The Literacy Pirates acknowledges the duty of care to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and is committed to ensuring safeguarding practice reflects statutory responsibilities, government guidance and complies with best practice.

The purpose of this policy is:

  • To protect children and young people who receive The Literacy Pirates’ services.
  • To provide staff and volunteers with the overarching principles that guide our approach to child protection.

The Literacy Pirates believes that a child or young person should never experience abuse of any kind. We have a responsibility to promote the welfare of all children and young people and to keep them safe. We are committed to ensuring that we practise in a way that protects them.

Legal framework

This policy has been drawn up on the basis of law and guidance that seeks to protect children, namely:

  • Children Act 1989
  • United Convention of the Rights of the Child 1991
  • Data Protection Act 1998
  • Sexual Offences Act 2003
  • Children Act 2004
  • Protection of Freedoms Act 2012
  • Keeping Children Safe in Education
  • Relevant government guidance on safeguarding children.

We recognise that:

  • The welfare of the child/young person is paramount, as enshrined in the Children Act 1989;
  • all children, regardless of age, disability, gender, racial heritage, religious belief, sexual orientation or identity, have the right to equal protection from all types of harm or abuse;
  • some children are additionally vulnerable because of their level of dependency or their communication needs;
  • working in partnership with children, young people, their parents, carers and other agencies is essential in promoting young people’s welfare.

We will seek to keep children and young people safe by:

  • Valuing, listening to and respecting them;
  • adopting child protection practices through procedures and a code of conduct for staff and volunteers;
  • developing and implementing an effective e-safety policy and related procedures
  • providing effective management for staff and volunteers through supervision, support and training;
  • recruiting staff and volunteers safely, ensuring all necessary checks are made;
  • sharing information about child protection and good practice with children, parents, staff and volunteers, to a level which is appropriate to the circumstances of their engagement with us;
  • sharing concerns with agencies who need to know, and involving parents and children appropriately. The Ed Team has safeguarding as a daily agenda item for discussion and follow up.

2) People responsible for safeguarding

The Designated Safeguarding Officer responsible for safeguarding at The Literacy Pirates is Director of Learning, Lily Eastwood. Contact numbers: 020 3327 1777 and 07955339649.

In case of absence, the deputy officer responsible for safeguarding at The Literacy Pirates is Chief Executive Jude Williams (number as above and on Salesforce).

Deputy Safeguarding Officer is Andrew McWhirter, Senior Session Leader.

In the case of a disclosure made against a member of the senior leadership team, contact trustee Aisha Miller-Dyer, via or via details on Salesforce, and asking for a confidential call back.

The named responsible person has the following core areas of responsibility:

  • Develop appropriate policies and organisational practices to safeguard all children that the organisation has contact with;
  • Receive and record information from anyone who has concerns;
  • Assess the information promptly and carefully, clarifying or obtaining more information when necessary;
  • Consult initially with a statutory child protection agency, such as the local children’s social care teams (previously called social services ), or the NSPCC on 0808 800 5000 (or via text on 88858) to talk about any doubts or concerns;
  • Make a formal referral when required to a statutory child protection agency or the police.
  • Ensure that all staff have received a safeguarding and child protection update in response to the Coronavirus lockdown period – to include working from home and maintaining good safeguarding and GDPR protocols and working to safeguard children in a virtual environment. Staff will record this training on Breathe.

The Deputy Safeguarding Officers have the following core areas of responsibility:

  • Receive and record information from anyone who has concerns;
  • Assess the information promptly and carefully, clarifying or obtaining more information when necessary;
  • Include safeguarding on daily meeting agenda schedules.

In case of any concerns about the welfare of a child, questions about this policy, or questions / concerns about keeping children safe at The Literacy Pirates should be directed to Lily Eastwood, or in her absence Jude Williams. Lily Eastwood and Jude Williams will follow up with the appropriate actions, as outlined in this policy.

All staff and volunteers at The Literacy Pirates have a responsibility to uphold this policy, and to inform the designated officers of any concerns.

A copy of this policy will be made available to all staff and volunteers working at The Literacy Pirates during their Induction period. Revised copies of this policy will be circulated when they are produced.

Our senior staff, DSL and Deputy DSLs are also required to familiarise themselves with the safeguarding policies of the schools we work with, to ensure we are aligned.

3) Definitions

“Staff” - Anyone that is directly employed by The Literacy Pirates, is a project leader, or who has been contracted by The Literacy Pirates as a freelance individual or organisation to work with children and young people on projects delivered by The Literacy Pirates. These people have regular and ongoing contact with children.

“Volunteer” - Volunteers have semi-regular contact with children, through volunteering at sessions.

“Visitor” – Visitors are individuals who attend a session at The Literacy Pirates either as a guest, or as an observer. Visitors may come into contact with children but are always supervised throughout the course of their visit, and are never given any responsibility for working with children.

“Child/young person” - A person under the age of 18.

“Abuse” - Abuse is the violation of an individual’s human rights. It can be a single act or repeated acts. It can be physical, sexual, or emotional. It also includes acts of neglect or an omission to act. In all forms of abuse there are elements of emotional abuse. Vulnerable adults may also suffer additional types of abuse such as being manipulated financially or being discriminated against. Other examples of abuse include inflicting physical harm such as hitting or misuse of medication, rape and sexual assault or exposure to sexual acts without informed consent, emotional abuse such as threats, humiliation and harassment, exploitation, ignoring medical or physical needs, withholding of necessities of life such as food or heating, witnessing domestic violence. Bullying is also a form of abuse by peers or a person more powerful than the victim. This list is not definitive.

“Physical Abuse” - This is abuse that causes physical harm to a young person as well as fabrication of symptoms of or deliberately causing ill health to a young person.

“Emotional Abuse” - Emotional abuse is an element of all forms of abuse. It is abuse that causes adverse effects on the young person’s emotional development, particularly from emotional ill-treatment of a young person.

“Sexual Abuse” - Involves forcing or enticing a child or young person to take part in or witness sexual activities, whether or not the young person is aware of what is happening.

“Neglect” – Neglect can occur when children do not have for example, adequate food, health care or education. They could suffer neglect when: any of their basic needs are not being met; they are left unsupervised in situations which represent possible dangers; they are left alone when it is inappropriate for their physical or emotional development.

4) Code of Conduct

All staff and volunteers will be encouraged to demonstrate exemplary behaviour to uphold good practice when working with young people. The following Code of Conduct illustrates principles The Literacy Pirates wishes to uphold when working with young people.

Conduct with young people:

Conduct around the Premises

Practices never to be allowed

The following should never be allowed:

5) DBS Checking

The Literacy Pirates DBS checks all staff and volunteers. Contractors, visitors and guests may not be DBS checked but are always supervised.

While there is no requirement to repeat DBS checks, the Literacy Pirates commits to sector best practice. In line with OFSTED recommendation we re-check every 3-5 years.

In line with best practice we also do an Enhanced Check for all staff, with the addition of a check for working with children in regulated activity for those who supervise Young Pirates. We do not ever just use a Basic Check.

  1. All DBS checks
  • Before beginning in a voluntary or non-voluntary position at the Literacy Pirates a DBS check must be in place. The organisation will can carry out document checks in person when possible, or if not possible via conference call. This is regularly reviewed according to latest Covid-guidance.
  • All staff and volunteers who supervise the children receive an Enhanced Check + check for working with children in regulated activity. Staff and volunteers recieve additional training and guidance for working on the virtual ship.
  • Staff and volunteers who supervise children receive an Enhanced Check.
  • DBS checks are generally non-transferrable. We conduct new DBS check for each role. We do accept the Update Service as long as the check level was equal to our own and the role the on the Update Service is the same as they will be performing in our organisation.
  • Any exemptions from a new DBS or alternatives (for example in the case of students who have only lived overseas) must be approved on a case by case basis by the Designated Safeguarding Officer.
  • All of our staff and volunteer DBS checks are performed through the platform U-check.
  1. Staff
  • We have a three year renewal policy for all staff.
  • New managers organise the staff checks and the result must be signed off by the Director of Learning.
  • Checks are recorded on BreatheHR to generate reminders in the lead-up to the renewal date.
  • If there is a break in employment or service of three months or more (excluding parental leave) we renew the DBS check.
  1. Volunteers:
  • We have a three year renewal policy for all active volunteers.
  • All DBS checks for volunteers are tracked and administered by the volunteering team.
  • If a volunteer is absent for 6 months or more and would like to re-join as a volunteer, we renew the DBS check.
  1. Trustees
  • We have a four year renewal policy for trustees.
  • The CEO tracks and arranges DBS checks for trustees.

6) Disclosure or concerning observation procedure

a) What to do if someone makes a disclosure to a member of The Literacy Pirates staff, or a volunteer

It is possible that a young person who is suffering, or has suffered, abuse will disclose to a Literacy Pirates volunteer or member of staff. This is something that everyone should be prepared for and must handle carefully.

The following principles are important when taking a disclosure:

As soon as possible, a note should be made of what was said or observed, using the young person’s own words, or the words of the person disclosing. Note the date, time, any names that were involved or mentioned and who the information was given to (see full checklist below).

This should then be sent confidentially to The Literacy Pirates safeguarding officer that you initially reported to using following process:

  1. Review the observation/disclosure. Are you immediately concerned for the young person’s safety?


Contact a Safeguarding Lead immediately. This is a “drop everything” concern. They will take the information they need and ask you to take any further action.

If you are not in the Education Team ask an Education Team member to help you to do this.

If you are in the Education Team do not involve anyone who is not already involved and go directly to the Safeguarding Lead.

After passing on your concern, ensure notes and observations are typed up on Salesforce as described in 2b.

2b) NO

Education Team members:

Ensure notes and observations are typed up on a Salesforce note on the profile of the person you have a concern about. Tag any additional contacts who are linked to the concern in the note. (eg people named in the concern, a crewmate who gave the concern, a staff member who also witnessed the concern.)

Copy the link to the note and email it to with the subject heading “date + SHIP + safeguarding/crewmate concern + initials of contact”. (eg 23.7.16 HACKNEY crewmate concern CT or 4.2.19 HARINGEY safeguarding AB)

The safeguarding inbox is reviewed within every working day. If you think the concern needs to be dealt with in a smaller time frame refer to 2a and contact the Safeguarding Lead.

Non-Education Team members:

Find an Education Team member to relay your concern to. They will help you record and send it to the appropriate person.

3) You may receive no more information about your disclosure or observation, due to the “need to know” nature of safeguarding. Do not discuss your concern with anyone further inside or outside the organisation.

4) Report any ongoing concerns to the Designated Safeguarding Lead.

The safeguarding inbox is monitored by the Designated Safeguarding Lead and Deputy Safeguarding Leads. It is their job to liaise with other agencies and escalate to relevant authorities.

b) Checklist for reporting suspected abuse

Staff who are reporting suspected abuse should have this information to hand when reporting suspected abuse.

Staff members should follow up any referral by sending a copy of the notes that they have made following the conversation with the young person, using the young person’s own words. These can then be passed on to the appropriate organisations.

c) Reporting Safeguarding Concerns Flowchart

7) Safeguarding Adult’s Policy

The Literacy Pirates acknowledges that we may sometimes work with vulnerable adults. With this in mind, we work in line with the Statement of Government Policy on Adult Safeguarding. The policy outlines the following principles.

Empowerment - Presumption of person led decisions and informed consent.

Prevention - It is better to take action before harm occurs.

Proportionality – Proportionate and least intrusive response appropriate to the risk presented. Protection - Support and representation for those in greatest need.

Partnership - Local solutions through services working with their communities. Communities have a part to play in preventing, detecting and reporting neglect and abuse.

Accountability - Accountability and transparency in delivering safeguarding.

We particularly consider this at the point of training and supporting our volunteers in their first session, when it is policy to raise any concerns immediately with the Volunteering Manager and the Safeguarding Lead Officer.

During the Coronavirus lockdown period, the organisation will take advice and guidance on using volunteers as part of a virtual model and will ensure all necessary training, technology and resources are made available. We put in place measures and practices to protect the adults who work for or volunteer for the organisation. For example, breakout sessions on the virtual ship are recorded.

Staff are to disclose any concerns regarding a vulnerable adult in accordance with our disclosures policy and any escalation of concerns will be dealt with in line with that.

8) Internal enquiries and suspension

In the event of an accusation of abuse being made against any member of The Literacy Pirates’ staff team or volunteer body, the individual accused will be automatically suspended pending further investigations. The temporary suspension of a member of staff in no way implies guilt or innocence. It is a measure intended to protect and reassure both staff and young people.

If an accusation is made against a member of staff:

The Literacy Pirates’ Disciplinary Committee (composed of The Literacy Pirates trustees together with relevant Literacy Pirates senior staff members, where appropriate) will assess all cases based upon available information. The member of staff against whom an accusation of abuse has been made will be summoned to an interview with the Disciplinary Committee as early as possible. They are entitled to be accompanied to this interview. Minutes will be taken of the interview. The task of the Disciplinary Committee is to decide whether or not the accused member of staff should be allowed to continue to work with young people. At all times the welfare of young people should be of paramount importance.

In all cases where the accusation of abuse is found to be true, the Disciplinary Committee will normally terminate the employment, contract or agreement with the individual. Lesser measures may be taken at the discretion of the Disciplinary Committee. This is an internal procedure and will be in addition to any external legal procedure necessitated by the relevant authorities.

If an accusation is made against a volunteer:

The situation will be assessed by the Literacy Pirates staff team, and the individual will be summoned to a meeting. They are entitled to be accompanied to this interview. Minutes will be taken of the interview. Advice about the next steps will be sought from the appropriate authorities following the interview. The task of the staff team is to decide whether or not the accused volunteer should be allowed to continue to work with young people. At all times the welfare of young people should be of paramount importance. In all cases where the accusation of abuse is found to be true, the staff team will dismiss the volunteer. Lesser measures may be taken at the staff team. This is an internal procedure and will be in addition to any external legal procedure necessitated by the relevant authorities.

9) Whistle-blowing Policy

What Is Whistleblowing? - Whistleblowing encourages and enables employees to raise serious concerns within the organisation rather than overlooking a problem or ‘blowing the whistle’ outside.

Employees are often the first to realise that there is something seriously wrong within the organisation. However, they may not express their concerns as they feel that speaking up would be disloyal to their colleagues or to the organisation.

Our Organisation’s Commitments - The organisation is committed to the highest possible standards of openness, probity and accountability. In line with that commitment we expect employees, and others that we deal with, who have serious concerns about any aspect of the organisation’s work to come forward and voice those concerns.

Who Does the Policy Apply To? - The policy applies to all employees and volunteers, (including those designated as casual hours, temporary, agency, authorised volunteers or work experience), and those contractors working for the organisation on the premises. It also covers suppliers and those providing services under a contract with the organisation.

Policy Aims:

  • Provide avenues for you to raise concerns in confidence and receive feedback on any action taken.
  • Ensure that you receive a response to your concerns and that you are aware of how to pursue them if you are not satisfied.
  • Assure you that you will be protected from possible reprisals or victimisation if you have a reasonable belief that you have made a disclosure in good faith.

What types of concerns are covered?

  • conduct which is an offence or a breach of law.
  • disclosure related to miscarriages of justice.
  • health and safety risks, including risks to the public as well as other employees.
  • damage to the environment.
  • the unauthorised use of public funds.
  • possible fraud and corruption.
  • sexual or physical abuse of clients.
  • other unethical conduct.

NB. Other procedures are available to employee e.g. The grievance procedure which relates to complaints about your own employment. This policy also does not replace other complaints procedures which are for public use.

Safeguards - The organisation recognises that the decision to report a concern can be a difficult one to make. If what you are saying is true, you should have nothing to fear because you will be doing your duty to your employer and those for whom you provide a service. The organisation will not tolerate any harassment of victimisation and will take appropriate action to protect you when you raise a concern in good faith.

Confidentiality - All concerns will be treated in confidence and every effort will be made not to reveal your identity if you so wish. At the appropriate time, however, you may need to come forward as a witness.

This policy encourages you however to put your name to your concern whenever possible. Please note that you:

  • must disclose the information in good faith.
  • must believe it to be substantially true.
  • must not act maliciously or make false allegations.
  • must not seek any personal gain.

How to raise your concern - As a first step, you should normally raise concerns either verbally or in writing with your immediate line manager. This may depend, however, on the seriousness and sensitivity of the issue involved and who is suspected of the malpractice. For example, if you believe that management is involved you should approach a more senior level of management, for example the Board of Trustees.

For independent advice please call:

Public Concern At Work


Helpline: 020 7404 6609


10) Rights and Confidentiality

If a complaint or allegation is made against a member of The Literacy Pirates’ staff or volunteer group, they should be made aware of their rights under both employment law and internal disciplinary procedures. This is the responsibility of the directors of The Literacy Pirates. Both the alleged abuser and the person who is thought to have been abused have the right to confidentiality under the Data Protection Act 1998. In criminal law, the Crown or other prosecuting authority has to prove guilt and the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty.

11) Prevention, Recruitment and Training

The Literacy Pirates recognises that anyone may have the potential to abuse young people in some way. All reasonable steps are taken to ensure suitable people are recruited.

The Literacy Pirates has in place a tiered set of requirements / responsibilities for different roles, to reflect the different levels of contact various staff members and volunteers will have with children.

Staff: Have frequent contact with children, including unsupervised, and have responsibility for the delivery of learning sessions.

Volunteers: Have irregular contact with children through attending sessions, and always in a supervised environment.

Requirements for staff members:

  • Recruitment: A thorough interview process and reference-taking process will be used with all staff to ensure their suitability for working with children.
  • DBS Check: An enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service check will need to be present before a candidate can begin work for and with The Literacy Pirates as a staff member. If a DBS check has been submitted but not yet returned, a clean DBS check from another organisation from within the last two years will be accepted until the completion of processing of the new check.
  • Training: All staff will receive training to:
    • Recognise their responsibilities and report any concerns about suspected poor practice or possible abuse.
    • Respond to concerns expressed by a young person or young person.
    • Work safely and effectively with young people.
    • Understand their right to confidentiality if they have concerns about another member of staff
    • Recognise good practice when working with young people online.
  • Supervision:
    • One staff member will always be supervising whenever there are any young people present, with the exception of the breakout rooms on the virtual ship; these are recorded and there is a staff ‘drop in’ system.
    • One additional staff member will be always be present in the building and on the virtual ship to support in case any urgent safeguarding problems arise
    • This means that at least two adults with enhanced disclosure DBS checks are present within the building where any activities with young people are being delivered. It is their responsibility to ensure that children are not allowed to be unattended with a volunteer.

Requirements for volunteers:

  • Recruitment: All volunteers will need to read the Literacy Pirates Policy on Safeguarding Children and Young People before they submit an application to become a volunteer, checking a box on an online form to confirm that they have done so.
  • DBS Check: An enhanced DBS check will need to be present before a candidate can begin work for and with The Literacy Pirates as a volunteer. The Literacy Pirates carries out its own DBS checks and will not accept DBS checks from other organisations.
  • Training: During a three-hour training session, a Literacy Pirates member of staff will fully brief volunteers about the organisation’s safeguarding policy and procedures. They will be explicitly instructed to avoid being alone with a young person at any time in the physical ships, and that the virtual ship breakout rooms are recorded and to report any concerns that may arise out of their interaction with the young people to a Literacy Pirates member of staff. They will again have the opportunity to read this policy in hard copy format and will sign to say they have both read and understood the required policy and procedures.
  • Supervision: During sessions, volunteers will be supervised by a Literacy Pirates member of staff at all times when working with children. There will never be any occasion for a volunteer to be left alone with a young person in the physical ships. On the virtual ship, volunteers will work with a small group of children and this will be supervised through the breakout room being recorded and staff ‘drop ins’.

12) Additional guidance


Now that most areas of work allow us to communicate through a virtual medium, it is important to consider young people’s safety when they use this form of media.

Specific risks

  • Accessing inappropriate content whilst at the Ship of Adventures;
  • Cyber-bullying (see also bullying for our general approach) ie the use of technology to bully, often anonymously;
  • Sexting – the sharing of sexual, naked or semi-naked images or videos of themselves or others.
  • Online grooming (see also CSE for our general approach)


E-safety is included in the annual staff training including the specific risks and groups who may be vulnerable to it.

Online projects

It is important that when implementing a project that has an online element, that a young person’s safety is taken into consideration. As it is extremely difficult to prove any information that has been given by an individual over the internet and it is becoming apparent that many people, including young people, are unaware that information that is published online can be seen by anyone on the internet. It is essential that safety information is available for young people and websites offering advice aimed specifically at different age ranges is available. Most of this information can be obtained from the Internet through websites, activities for young people of all ages and short films. Specific practices to be adhered to at The Literacy Pirates are:

  • Children are always supervised when using devices connected to the internet during sessions and during breaktime.
  • All computers will have their search engine settings adapted so that the young people can't access inappropriate material
  • Young people and volunteers are briefed on internet and web safety when conducting projects involving IT
  • The Young Pirates’ email address is This will be used for purposes of correspondence with external people and organisation. No young person will be given the log in details, and all incoming and outgoing emails will be checked by staff members before being passed on.

Communicating with Young People

Only a staff member may initiate contact with a young person, and only within the remit of The

Literacy Pirates project they are working on. No other staff member should initiate contact with a young person outside of The Literacy Pirates project.

  • When emailing young people about a Literacy Pirates piece of work, all email addresses of young people must be “blind carbon copied” (bcc) so their email address can be concealed. You must always “carbon copy” (cc) the child safeguarding email address ( ) so no emails are just between just you and a young person. This will also save all communication in an archived file.
  • Via mobile phone. Contacting a young person on their mobile should be done within office hours and when another member of staff is present. If a young person initiates inappropriate contact via email, text, or phone, The Literacy Pirates staff must inform the young person that it is inappropriate and then inform a member of Safeguarding staff. Contact with young people should never be made via a staff member or volunteer’s personal phone number.


Some images and footage from the work that the Literacy Pirates is involved in will be needed for use in the media, publications, external communications material and on the web. To ensure the safeguarding of these individuals parents/legal guardians of young people will be asked to give their written permission for photographs and video to be taken and used, and they will confirm and sign the registration form stating this.


The Literacy Pirates has a zero-tolerance approach to bullying. Young people are rarely left unsupervised with their peers, and this minimises the chance of bullying. If a child is suspected of bullying another, the following steps will be taken by a Literacy Pirates member of staff:

  • An impartial conversation with both parties will be had and notes taken.
  • If the staff member comes to the conclusion that bullying has taken place:
  • they will speak to the child accused of bullying, explaining the affects of their actions and stating that it contravenes the Literacy Pirates’ Code.
  • A discussion will be had with both children at the same time they will have input into the subsequent action which might involve keeping them apart.
  • Both sets of parents will be informed.
  • The child will then be put on a formal warning and their subsequent behaviour monitored. If their behaviour continues to be a concern, a meeting will be called with their parents, and the decision might be taken that it would be better to remove them from the programme.
  • Staff will be vigilant regarding any cyber bullying that might be apparent during the Coronavirus lockdown period and will report as per policy to the DSL.

Child Sexual Exploitation

Child sexual exploitation (CSE) is a type of sexual abuse whereby young people are groomed (often through relationships and situations that are meant to feel loving and consensual) to take part in sexual activities. CSE is an area of focus in Hackney so it is important that our staff are well-informed, although the work is predominantly aimed at young people at the higher end and above the age group we work with. CSE is included in annual staff training, including training on what it is and who may be particularly at risk. Updates and guidance from City and Hackney Child Safeguarding Board are followed by the Designated Safeguarding Lead and shared with the team as appropriate.


Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is a form of abuse that a number of communities we work with are vulnerable to. FGM is included in annual staff training and the Volunteer Handbook (highlighted in training). An additional refresher and reminder will be given to all staff and volunteers in the summer months, in the lead up to the most common time for FGM to take place.


The Literacy Pirates is aware of the duty of all organisations working with young people as outlined by the government’s Prevent policy. Prevent is included in annual staff training and a statement on the duties of Prevent and encouraging volunteers to report any concerns is included in the Volunteer Handbook (highlighted in training). Additionally, in the planning of our learning programme we have a commitment to planning inclusive learning experiences where the young people are supported to share and engage with each other’s cultures and communities.

“Young Crewmates“

The Literacy Pirates is committed to the safeguarding of all young people. All of our safeguarding procedures also apply to volunteers aged 16 and 17. The safeguarding of this group has been specifically risk assessed as their role means they could be at risk of being overlooked. This can be found in the safeguarding folder.

13) Complaints Procedure

Complaints about this policy, these procedures or their implementation should initially be addressed in writing to the designated safeguarding officer, with a copy addressed to The Literacy Pirates Trustees, care of the Chair of Trustees: James Westhead (Chair), The Literacy Pirates, 138 Kingsland High Street, London E8 2NS

14) Relevant Contact Details

NSPCC Helpline

The NSPCC helpline is available to give advice 0808 800 5000.

First Response

Each area has a first response team for referring concerns about a child and getting further guidance.

Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO)

The LADO is situated within children's services and should be alerted to all cases in which it is alleged that a person who works with children has:

  • behaved in a way that has harmed or may have harmed a child
  • possibly committed a criminal offence against children
  • behaves towards a child in way that indicates they are unsuitable to work with children.

A LADO helps co-ordinate information sharing with the correct people.
They monitor and track any investigation with the expectation that it is resolved as quickly as possible.

The LADO is involved from the initial phase of the allegation through to the conclusion of the case.

The Safeguarding Board

The safeguarding is the key statutory body for agreeing how organisations co-operate to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and young people a borough, and for ensuring the effectiveness of what they do. They are useful for resources and training specific to the local area.

For specific contact numbers for each of the areas we work in see Appendix 1.

15) Review and Monitoring Procedures
We are committed to reviewing our policy and procedure annually or following any updates/learnings about best practice.

We monitor our safeguarding through record-keeping and training. The following documents outline how we track our progress (all of these can be found in the safeguarding file):

- The safeguarding risk register details where key safeguarding records are kept.

- The annual safeguarding audit submitted to trustees for review every January.

- The training register which details annual trainings as well as other updates and activities.

Additionally, safeguarding is a quarterly staff team agenda item to encourage the team to bring their concerns. Supervision notes and Education Team meetings minutes also detail regular conversations (management folder in Education).

Appendix 1: local safeguarding contacts


- The Hackney LADO guide can be found here:

Referrals are made by emailing or phoning 020 8356 8982.

- City and Hackney Safeguarding Board

City and Hackney Safeguarding Children Board (CHSCB), Hackney Service Centre, 1 Hillman Street, Hackney, E8 1DY

Alternatively, Email: or Phone: 0208 356 4183

- FAST – First Action Screening Team

Hackney Learning Trust, 1 Reading Lane, Hackney, London, E8 1GQ

Telephone: 020 8356 5500 (Mon-Fri 9-5) Out of hours: 0208 356 2710

For more information go to:

- Other Hackney services relating to safeguarding can be found here:

- Hackney


- The Haringey LADO can be contacted on 020 8489 2968/1186 or email For more information and to download the referral form go to

- Haringey Safeguarding Board

Haringey Local Safeguarding Children Board, 7th Floor, River Park House, 225 High Road, N22 8HQ. Enquiries: 020 8489 3145. Training: 020 8489 1470. Email:

More information:

- MASH – Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub

If you want to make a referral, request an assessment or seek advice, please contact: MASH, River Park House, 225 High Road, London N22 8HQ. Tel: 020 8489 4470 (Monday to Thursday 8.45am to 5pm; Friday 8.45am to 4.45pm). Email: Out of office hours, including weekends the Emergency Duty Team: 020 8489 0000. More information and downloading the referral form