Code of conduct for visitors regarding children and vulnerable adult residence:
The University of Bath aims to foster a positive and safe environment for all its students, staff, visitors and everyone connected with its activities. In order to achieve this, we require everyone to follow a basic code of conduct.
This code of conduct is in place to protect visiting children(1) (under 18 years of age) and vulnerable adults(2). It may equally protect employees.
We expect all visiting staff to conduct themselves in a way that ensures the safety of all children and vulnerable adults. This will entail complying with UK laws and regulations which may well differ from those in your own country.
Relationships with children and vulnerable adults
Visiting and University staff should maintain a professional relationship with children and vulnerable adults and a professional approach to their role at all times and should not socialise with visiting children and vulnerable adults outside working hours.
Communication between children and vulnerable adults and staff
Staff should not give out personal email addresses or phone numbers to children and vulnerable adults and should not communicate via email, text, phone or social networking/gaming sites. Staff should never post photos of children and vulnerable adults on any social networking sites. children and vulnerable adults should be informed that they must not request personal contact details of staff nor should they give out their own.
Staff should refrain from taking or exchanging personal photos with children and vulnerable adults.
The rules apply even after the course/event has ended. If a child or vulnerable adult tries to contact a member of staff via social media they must decline the invitation. These rules exist for the protection of employees as well as children and vulnerable adults.
Physical contact with children
Whilst the Care Commission have advised that there is currently no legislation in place which forbids a member of staff from consoling a child (e.g. putting an arm around the shoulder of an upset child) or assisting a child who has hurt themselves (e.g. cut their knee), it is expected that the member of staff will act professionally in all circumstances. The following guidance is given:
- Try to ensure that a second person i.e. colleague is present when dealing with an injured or upset child. In the case of a medical emergency, the appointed first-aider should be contacted immediately.
- In the case of demonstrating something that involves touching a child or vulnerable adult (e.g. sports), explain exactly what you are going to do before you demonstrate.
- Staff should avoid all unnecessary physical contact with children and vulnerable adults at all times as it could be misinterpreted. In the event that a child is hurt, injured or upset employees are encouraged to act with caution and to exercise common sense when deciding on their course of action.
- Any violent or contact of an aggressive nature will not be tolerated
Staff should not put themselves in a position where they will be alone with a child or vulnerable adult and should make sure someone else is present. If there is a need to talk to a child or vulnerable adult privately, they should use a quiet corner of a public space (e.g. refectory, common room). Staff should not enter children and vulnerable adults’ accommodation on their own.
Smoking, alcohol and drugs
Staff should never consume alcohol with children or buy alcohol for them. They should respect the smoking rules of the University and must not smoke with children. This includes the use of e-cigarettes.
Staff members will not possess, use, or be under the influence of drugs or alcohol while on University property.
Carrying weapons is illegal in the UK, so please do not bring or carry any weapons with you, should you find any children and vulnerable adults in your care with a weapon, please contact our Security team who will confiscate this for you.
The use of inappropriate, foul or abusive language towards any child or vulnerable adult or member of staff is not acceptable and staff should challenge inappropriate language from children and vulnerable adults appropriately.
Staff have an obligation to report concerns that the code of conduct is not being followed and there is a legal obligation to report concerns regarding any form of abuse or negligence towards any minor within their care or otherwise. Normally this would be through your own escalation or whistleblowing procedure, but when this may not be possible University Security may be contacted.
Any member of staff reporting concerns can be assured that confidentiality will be maintained.
The university Public interest disclosure (whistleblowing) procedure can be found here.
It is up to all of us to help with preventing people being drawn into terrorism. In order to protect children and vulnerable adults in our care, we must ensure that we do our best to be able recognise behaviour which may lead to radicalisation and extremism.
All University and visiting staff are expected to uphold the Prevent duty and to have due regard to the need to prevent people being drawn into terrorism. In order to do so staff should be able to recognise behaviour which may lead to radicalisation and extremism and to take action in accordance with Prevent guidelines.
All staff should be familiarised with and follow this Code of Conduct as well as relevant policies, in particular, the Safeguarding Policy:
Staff should not exchange/accept gifts from children and vulnerable adults as this could be misconstrued. Gifts should only be given to children and vulnerable adults as part of an agreed reward system (e.g. competition prizes) and should not be of significant value.
Raising a concern
If the immediate safety of an individual is in question and assistance is required in order to ensure that safety then please contact University of Bath Security on: - 666 on a landline - 01225 383999 from a mobile
Otherwise where matters may be of a concern regarding the concern of the behaviour of a responsible adult then please contact Liz Eyles: 01225 383239 (Head of ResLife) Clare Cobb: 01225 385101 (Residence Experience Manager) or Jane Loveys: 01225 386733 (Director of Campus Services) who will contact the University Senior Nominated Officers.