Haverhill Silver Band Whistle Blowing Policy
Aims and purpose
The aim of this procedure is to provide a clear and transparent way for all members of the
band to raise genuine concerns about acts of wrongdoing or malpractice within the
organisation. It also aims to ensure that any concerns are dealt with effectively and in a timely
This procedure provides the Band Committee and specifically the Chair and Welfare Officer
with steps to deal with allegations, ensuring that members and volunteers are not penalised
for raising genuine concerns, even if those concerns prove to be unfounded. It also provides
the means for taking disciplinary action against anyone who is found to have raised false
concerns with malicious intent.
The procedure does not apply to child protection concerns, adult safeguarding concerns, or
allegations about a member of staff or volunteer. Concerns or allegations of this nature should
be dealt with by following the Child Protection or Adult Safeguarding Policy and Procedures,
or the Procedure for Managing Allegations against or Concerns about Risk Posed by an Adult.
What to do if you wish to raise a concern about malpractice
Speak to the Band Chair or Welfare Officer. If your concern relates to one of these officers,
then it may be necessary for another committee member to also be involved to support the
officer you have spoken to.
The officer you have approached should arrange to meet with you as soon as possible to
discuss your concern. This meeting can take place away from the band room if necessary.
You will be told at the meeting, or as soon as possible afterwards, what action will be taken to
address your concern. It may not be possible to tell you the full details of the outcome, as this
could relate to confidential third party information. If no action is to be taken in relation to your
concern, you will also be informed of this fact and given the reasons why.
• If you do not want the person you have concerns about to know your identity, you should make this
clear to the officer dealing with your concern at the earliest opportunity. Every effort will be made
to respect your wishes, but it cannot be guaranteed that your identity will not be disclosed. If this
is the case, you will be informed and any issues you may have about this will be discussed with
• If you need support in raising your concern, you may bring another member or volunteer with you,
however consideration should be taken to respect the confidentiality of the concern.
What to do if someone raises a concern with you about malpractice
If someone tells you they are concerned about the actions of another member or volunteer,
you should arrange to meet him/her as soon as possible. If you are not the person responsible
for dealing with these matters, you should establish why he/she has chosen to discuss the
concern with you. You should then suggest that the person speaks to that officer and offer to
support them to do this. You should not, however, refuse to hear what the person has to say.
You should approach the situation sensitively, recognising the discomfort that the person may
feel. Offer to meet him/her away from the band room if he/she wishes, but ensure you are
protected and not alone if this person is under 18. You should also remind the person with
the concern about other sources of support available to him/her. Some are listed at the end
of this document.
If the person reporting the concern wants his/her identity to be kept confidential, you should
explain that this will be done if possible, but that it may not be achievable.
Make notes of your discussions with the individual, and check the accuracy of your notes with
Deciding what action to take
Once you have established the nature of the concern, it may be of a relatively minor nature
and you may decide to resolve it informally. If the concern appears more serious, you must
consider first whether any immediate action is needed to protect children or an adult at risk.
If so, you should check the child protection or adult safeguarding procedures to consider what
action to take.
You should also consider whether there is a need to involve the police and/or other statutory
services e.g. health. If so, you should contact the Welfare Officer (if this is not you) to discuss
the matter further.
If you are not the person responsible for dealing with concerns i.e. Chair, Welfare Officer or
other appointed committee member, you should refer the matter to the appropriate officer,
who will decide what action to take.
Conducting an investigation
Unless the matter is relatively minor and can be dealt with informally, the responsible officer
should arrange for an investigation to be completed as swiftly as possible. The investigation
should also be demonstrably thorough and impartial.
The scope of the investigation will be determined by the nature of the concern. Witnesses
may need to be consulted and records may need to be scrutinised. It is also possible that
advice may be needed from someone with specialist knowledge in the area of concern.
Once the investigation is completed, a report should be produced summarising the nature of
the concern, the investigation process and the outcome, including specific recommendations.
Take measures to preserve the anonymity of the person who raised the concern, if this has
been his/her wish. If the concerns are not upheld, this should also be made clear. If the
concern is upheld and the person at the centre of it is found to have been culpable or remiss
in some way, the report’s recommendations should be carried out using a clear plan of action.
The plan may include the use of disciplinary action, training, coaching, counselling, the
implementation of new policies or procedures, or a referral to the Disclosure and Barring
Service and/or Local Authority if required.
If it becomes apparent during the course of the investigation that a criminal offence may have
been committed, the police should be informed. Your own investigation may have to be
suspended on police advice, if they decide that they need to become involved.
The person who raised the concern should be informed of the outcome, but not the details of
any disciplinary action. It may be appropriate for the person who raised the concern to be
offered support or counselling.
If the concern is unfounded and the person who raised it is found, through the process of
investigation, to have acted maliciously or out of a desire for personal gain, it may be
appropriate to consider disciplinary action against him/her.
Recording the concerns
The responsible officer should make accurate notes of each stage of the process, including
the discussions during meetings, regardless of whether the concern is dealt with formally or
Copies of these notes should be given to the person who is the subject of the concern. The
person who raised the concern should also be given copies of notes from his/her discussion.
Notes made during the investigation and the report of the investigation, together with any
notes relating to the outcome, should be kept securely and in a manner that complies with
data protection requirements. If they were to be requested by an investigating authority, these
notes should not reveal the identity of the person who reported the concerns.
Information and Support
Dealing with an issue such as this may require external support. This could be gained
through Brass Bands England, the NSPCC, a Local Authority Designated Officer for
safeguarding, or Citizens Advice. Your policy should provide contact details of relevant
national and local contacts that could support during this time
Haverhill Silver Band Safeguarding Policy
This policy applies to all members, volunteers or anyone working on behalf of Haverhill Silver Band.
The purpose of this policy:
- To protect children, young people and adults with care and support needs who are members
of the band.
- To provide staff and volunteers with the overarching principles that guide our approach to
Haverhill Silver Band believes that a child, young person or adult with care and support needs should
never experience abuse of any kind. We have a responsibility to promote the welfare of all children,
young people and adults at risk and to keep them safe. We are committed to practice in a way that
We recognise that:
• the welfare of the child 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 a right to equal protection from all types of harm or abuse;
• some children are additionally vulnerable because of the impact of previous experiences, their
level of dependency, communication needs or other issues; and
• working in partnership with children, young people, their parents, carers and other agencies
is essential in promoting young people’s welfare.
In addition, bands are aware that they also have safeguarding responsibilities towards adult members,
some of whom may be vulnerable at different times in their lives. The principles outlined above in
relation to children, also apply to our work with adults. In terms of a legal framework, the
arrangements for those over 18 are governed by the Care Act 2014. This Act stipulates that statutory
safeguarding duties apply to an adult who:
• has care and support needs, and
• is experiencing, or at risk of, abuse or neglect, and,
• as a result of those care and support needs, is unable to protect themselves from either the
risk of, or the experience of, abuse or neglect.
We will seek to keep children, young people and adults safe by:
• valuing them, listening to and respecting them, ensuring that, in the case of adults, we work
with their consent unless ‘vital interests’ [as defined in the Data Protection Act (1998)] are at
stake, or the person has been assessed as lacking mental capacity [as defined in the Mental
Capacity Act (2005)];
• adopting child protection and adult safeguarding practices through procedures and a code of
conduct for and members and volunteers;
• developing and implementing an effective e-safety guidelines and related procedures;
• providing effective support and training for volunteers with responsibility;
• recruiting staff and volunteers safely, ensuring all necessary checks are made;
• sharing information about child protection and adult safeguarding with children, parents,
volunteers and members;
• sharing concerns with agencies who need to know, and involving parents and children
Dealing with a safeguarding concern:
All suspicions and allegations of abuse should be taken very seriously and responded to swiftly and
appropriately. A Child or adult with care and support should never be deterred from making a
“disclosure” of abuse through fear of not being believed.
Ways that abuse might be brought to your attention:
• A child or adult might make a direct disclosure about themselves.
• A child or adult might make a direct disclosure about another person.
• A child or adult might offer information that is worrying but not a direct disclosure.
• A member of the band or volunteer might be concerned about the appearance or behaviour
of a child at risk, or about the behaviour of someone (e.g. a parent or carer) towards a child
or an adult at risk.
• A parent or carer might make a disclosure about abuse that a child or adult is suffering or at
risk of suffering.
• A parent or carer might offer information about a child or adult that is worrying but is not a
When talking to a child or adult who has told you that he/she or another person is being abused:
• Stay calm and reassure them that telling someone about it was the right thing to do.
• Tell him/her that you now must do what you can to keep him/her (or the person who is the
subject of the allegation) safe.
• In the case of an adult with mental capacity, ask them if they will give their consent to the
information being passed on to an external investigating agency.
• Let the person tell their whole story. Don’t try to investigate or quiz them, but make sure
you are clear as to what they are saying.
• Ask them what they would like to happen because of what they have said, but don’t make or
infer promises that you can’t keep.
• Let them know what you are going to do next (i.e. discuss the matter with the band welfare
officer in order to help, and that the matter will not become common knowledge).
• In the case of a child, give them the ChildLine phone number 08001111.
• In the case of an adult, check out whether they have anyone they can talk to about the
matter; if not, tell them they can talk to you (if you are willing for them to do so).
• Write down what you have been told straight away – record the facts, avoid opinion. Try to
use the exact words as much as you can. Write the date (including year) and time recorded.
Haverhill Silver Band recognises its responsibility under the ‘Prevent Duty’ June 2015 (DfE guidance).
The Welfare Officer will assess risk of members of the band being drawn into terrorism, including
support for extremist ideas that are part of terrorist ideology. The Welfare Officer will work with
the relevant Local Authority to ensure that any action needed is co-ordinated and timely.
Normal referral processes are also available when there are concerns about Children who may be at
risk of being drawn into terrorism. Any member of staff can make a referral if necessary through
Channel (a multi-agency approach to supporting those at risk of radicalisation) via the relevant Local
Authority. If the child’s situation does not appear to be improving the band member with concern
should press for re-consideration. Concerns should always lead to help for the Child at some point
in the process if appropriate.
While decisions to seek support for a child in need, or about whom where are concerns relating to
radicalisation, would normally be taken in consultation with parents, it must be noted that their
consent is not required for a referral when there are reasonable grounds to believe that a child is at
risk of serious harm.
General Guidelines for all members of the band
• Contact – avoid any physical contact at all times.
• Behaviour and language – Children are very impressionable. It is important to model
appropriate behaviour and language, and to give constructive guidance.
• Never be left alone with a child. Always carry out all activities openly within the group.
• At concert venues – adult members should never change in front of children.
• The band should ensure that there are adequate toilet facilities at the band room for both
females and males.
• Transporting children in cars – never allow yourself to be alone or travel with them alone in
a car (see transportation guidelines below).
• Parents – have a duty to ensure that when they leave their children for band that they have
actually arrived in the band room safely, (not just dropped off outside in the car park). They
should also ensure that they are there to collect their children at the stated time when
finishing a rehearsal.
• Two or more members of the band should stay behind with any children or young adult
who are collected late for the safety of both the child and the adults alike.
• Any concerns of a Child Protection nature should always be passed onto the named Welfare
Transporting young people and vulnerable adults to rehearsals and concerts.
If sharing a lift involves a young player or adult players with care and support needs, these best practice
guidelines should be followed:
• transport to rehearsals and concerts is the responsibility of the parent or carer, unless group
transport has been arranged by the band.
• If a young player, or adult player with care and support needs, is needing help with transport, this
should be arranged directly between the parent/player and band member offering the lift and not
through a third party or the committee. It should be made clear to the parent/carer that this is a
personal arrangement and the band does not hold any responsibility for this arrangement.
• Band members should be made aware of best practice when providing lifts to young people and,
in some cases, those with care and support needs. This should include but is not limited to;
o Where possible, avoid travelling with the young person alone
o Agreeing pick up and drop off arrangements with parents
o Asking the young person to sit in the rear of the car, particularly if you are alone
o Having a contact number for the parent
o Driving within the law
• Despite the band not holding responsibility for the arrangement of lifts, there is still a duty of care.
If there are any concerns raised regarding transporting young people or those with care and
support needs, they should be dealt with in line with the band’s safeguarding and whistle blowing
policy and, if necessary, appropriate referrals made to statutory authorities.