The Dean, the Very Rev. Tim Barker, has highlighted the Church’s position following the conviction of former St Stephen’s vicar Father John Moore for indecent assault on an 18-year-old man. Father Moore has since resigned and left the island.
The Dean said the Church wanted to ensure that the churches across the Deanery of Guernsey and activities undertaken within them are ‘as safe as possible’, with particular concerns about protecting and caring for vulnerable people.
‘The Church of England is currently undertaking an important new process to review all past safeguarding cases,’ he said.
A large-scale review of the way the Church had handled child protection issues took place between 2007 and 2009, which involved scrutiny of the personal files of all clergy and others with roles within churches.
But an independent review board identified gaps in the initial process and so the Past Cases Review 2 was launched last December.
The Dean confirmed that no other cases of concern had come to light.
‘PCR2 has a much wider remit than the original review, in that its time-frame has been extended and, perhaps more significantly, that survivors of Church-related abuse have been asked to contribute and form an integral part of this process,’ he said.
The latest review will involve examining all safeguarding case papers and will ensure that voices of survivors are heard.
Former senior police officer Tracey Hawkins has been appointed by the Diocese of Salisbury as an independent reviewer to conduct the review into past cases in the Channel Islands.
A PCR2 reference group has also been established to provide independent oversight of this work and includes the island Deans and a range of representatives from organisations outside of the Church.
The Dean added: ‘At the end of this process, we will be able to say that all known safeguarding cases across the Channel Islands have been appropriately managed and reported to statutory agencies or the police where appropriate; that the needs of any known victims have been considered and that sources of support have been identified and offered where this is appropriate; and that all identified risks have been assessed and mitigated as far as is reasonably possible.’
Get in touch – Church
Anyone with information about church-related abuse is encouraged to be a part of the process, no matter when an incident took place or whether it has been previously reported. Diocesan safeguarding adviser Jem Carter can be contacted by email, firstname.lastname@example.org, or there is a dedicated independent helpline on 0800 802020.