The SBNI has established the Interfaith Committee in May 2015 as a mechanism to engage with the faith community in Northern Ireland for the purposes of safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people.
The aim of the SBNI Interfaith Safeguarding Sub-Group is to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and young people in Northern Ireland by enhancing the safety and welfare of children and young people and those who lead them within the range of faith group provisions. It will achieve this by continuing to promote the effective collaboration of stakeholders in ensuring children and young people involved in the faith sector are protected and safeguarded.
- Develop partnerships working within the Faith Groups, SBNI and others concerned in safeguarding children in Northern Ireland;
- Develop and share good practice arrangements and safeguarding resources suitable for use within this sector and encourage use across any Faith Groups;
- Review the wider SBNI policy and procedures for their applicability across the Faith Group sector in conjunction with the Policy and Procedures Committee. To then seek to ensure the dissemination and encourage adoption of same;
- Identify key localised issues and develop key safeguarding initiatives within Faith Groups and share same with the wider SBNI member and partner agencies;
- Support the promotion within Faith Groups of appropriate safeguarding messages at an operational level; and
- Support the equipping of those in leadership positions across the spectrum of faith-based youth and children’s work with SBNI jurisdiction.
The group is chaired by a Secretary to the Council for Social Witness, Presbyterian Church in Ireland. Membership comprises of representatives from;
- Catholic Church Diocese of Down and Connor
- Church of Ireland
- Methodist Church in Ireland
- National Society for the Prevention Cruelty to Children (NSPCC)
- Police Service Northern Ireland (PSNI)
- Presbyterian Church in Ireland
- Salvation Army
- Strategic Planning and Performance Group of the Department of Health (SPPG)