It is the responsibility of all those involved in Scouting to ensure, so far as is reasonably practical, that all activities are conducted in a safe manner without risk to the health of the participants.
Or 'Staying Safe - Safety Checklist for Leaders' aims to help all adults working with young people to fulfil their role and responsibilities in managing and supporting safety in Scouting. The safety of both young people and adults is important. A large part of this is about being organised, asking the right questions and doing things that will help safety without taking away a sense of adventure appropriate to the age group. This is a straight-forward checklist that can be dealt with quickly and easily. Additional support can be found on www.scouts.org.uk/safety, or alternatively, speak to your line manager or others locally.
Safe scouting: a code of conduct
- Do ensure all activities are approved in accordance with POR (Rule 9.1)
- Do identify hazards and discuss how they will be managed to reduce risk (see the Activities - Risk Assessment factsheet; Staying Safe checklists for managers, executive committees and sectional leaders).
- Do ensure all meetings, events or activities have a leader in charge who is responsible for overseeing the activity and all adults and young people. This includes, registers, headcounts, allocation of roles to specific adults and checking they are aware of their specific responsibilities (see leader in charge info at www.scouts.org/safety). The best way of doing this is for all adults who will be involved in the activity to agree which one of them will undertake this function.
- Do give young people appropriate training, guidance and rules.
- Do be prepared to deal with accidents (have a first aid kit and relevant emergency contact details).
- Don’t be afraid to stop or alter an activity being run by you or another leader.
- Don’t put your needs above those of young people. Ensure activities are appropriate for the young people involved.
- Don’t ignore concerns expressed by adults or young people.
- Don’t assume that someone else is managing safety – always check.
Organising your programme
- Check POR rules
- Is this a Scout-led or externally-led activity?
- Check whether further insurance is required
- Check whether HQ needs notifying
- Ensure an InTouch process is in place
- Ensure all activities are approved in accordance with POR Policy
Leader in charge
- Ensure all meetings, events or activities have an identified leader in charge that is responsible for overseeing the activity and all adults and young people. This includes responsibility for registers, headcounts, allocation of roles to specific adults and checking they are aware of their specific responsibilities (see leader in charge info at www.scouts.org/safety). The best way of doing this is for all adults who will be involved in the activity to agree which one of them will undertake this function.
Putting safety on the agenda
- Ensure you understand how and when to record and report incidents, accidents and near misses. Information is contained within the purple card.
- Discuss safety at all events, activities and camp-planning meetings and reviews.
- Give young people appropriate training, guidance or rules.
Use the Five Steps of Risk Assessment
Further guidance on when to write down your risk assessment can be found in the risk assessment factsheet.
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