Safeguarding

You said, we did

The NFCC’s Safeguarding Workstream has delivered a number of guidance documents and a self-assessment tool to enable services to assure and improve their capability in this area.

We are grateful for all the feedback we received through the consultation, all of which has been considered. We have provided an explanation and rationale for the changes made in the table below.

View the Safeguarding Fire Standard

Desired outcome

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Fire and rescue services will either be part of a Safeguarding Board or Safeguarding Partnership depending on its local authority structure. The Fire Standard did not adequately reflect these differing arrangements. The wording was amended to provide clarification of the varying safeguarding board and partnership arrangements across the country.

Further clarification has been provided within the glossary.

Safeguarding is applicable to all employees, and it was recognised that volunteers, who play an important role within fire and rescue services, were not explicitly referred to within the Fire Standard. Volunteers would be required to complete the same rigorous training and maintain the same level of Safeguarding awareness as paid employees. Volunteers were included alongside any reference to employees to provide clarification and emphasis that safeguarding is applicable to all.

To achieve the Fire Standard

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Local Safeguarding Boards use the term “suitably trained”, rather than “qualified”. To align language within the Fire Standard with that used by local Safeguarding Boards, the term “suitably trained” was added alongside the term “qualified”.
The language used to describe those who are most at risk of harm and abuse varied across the country. Feedback suggested that the term “at risk of harm” was language most commonly used by fire and rescue services, but not by all.

For consistency this term was used throughout the Fire Standard but clarification of it and terms some services may use instead is included in the glossary.

When referring to recruitment of those who may be unsuitable to work with those at risk, the term recruitment within the Fire Standard needed to be clarified so that it also included and applied to:

  • volunteers;
  • those changing roles within a service; and
  • those transferring from another service.
The word “employing” was amended to “recruiting” to ensure it encompassed volunteers and those who move roles within the service (for example those recruited to a new role within their service).

Further clarification has been provided within a glossary.

Training should be aligned to Community Risk Management Plans, as well as NFCC’s Safeguarding Guidance. The Fire Standard was revised to reflect that training should be aligned to both the services Community Risk Management Plan and the NFCC Safeguarding Guidance.

Expected benefits the Fire Standard

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Those at risk of harm can be a member of the public or an employee. The Fire Standard made note of this throughout, however the benefit only referred to positive outcomes for members of the public and not employees. Benefit three was expanded to include employees and volunteers.