Appendix A3

Code of Conduct for working with children or young people 


All workers of the church should agree to the following code of conduct when working with children and young people. The word ‘child’ refers to all those under the age of 18 throughout this document



  • Do treat all people with dignity and respect
  • Respect and promote the rights of children to make their own decisions and choices
  • Encourage respect for difference, diversity, beliefs and culture
  • Act inclusively, seeking to make everyone feel welcome and valued
  • Use appropriate language
  • Be a good role model
  • Treat people with equal care and concern
  • Take all reasonable adjustments for young people with disabilities and special
    education needs
  • Listen to children and tell the Church Safeguarding Coordinator if you have any
    concerns about a child’s welfare
  • Refer to a more senior worker if a child does not respond to your instructions despite encouragement and warning
  • Encourage everyone to follow any behaviour agreement
    or ground rules and apply sanctions consistently
  • Seek to diffuse aggressive or threatening behaviour without the use of physical contact
  • Interact with children in a public place. If a child wants to talk one-to-one about an issue, tell another worker and find somewhere quieter, but still public, to talk
  • Make sure that any electronic communication is done with parental consent and is transparent, accountable, recorded and adheres to safeguarding policies. Using church platforms and not private accounts
  • Have a designated photographer to take, store and share photos of your group’s activities, in line with URC good practice guidelines
  • Use physical contact wisely; it should be:
  • in public
  • appropriate to the situation and to the age, gender and culture of the child
  • in response to the needs of the child, not the adult
  • respectful of the child’s wishes, feelings and dignity
  • Respect children’s and young people’s privacy
  • Ensure that any communication online is done through a work or church account –
    this may require setting up an account specific for that purpose
  • Ensure, where possible, parents or guardians are present in the building or other
    workers are aware when young people are communicating with you via social media. Communication with a child via social media should only ever take place when their
    parent or guardian and other adult workers are aware of these online interactions.
  • Inform your line manager or point of contact of your intention to communicate online with families or young people and keep a record of times and dates when you do this.
  • Keep up to date on policies, procedures and training, including safeguarding and health and safety
  • Understand that your conduct outside of work including on line can impact on your work with children and young people




  • Do not abuse the power and responsibility of your role for example do not belittle, scapegoat, put down, or ridicule a child or young person (even in ‘fun’) and don’t use language or behaviour with sexual connotations (e.g. flirting or innuendo)
  • Exclude children or workers from conversations and activities unless there is a good reason
  • Overshare about your own situations
  • Show favouritism (e.g. in selection for activities, in giving rewards, etc) or encourage excessive attention from a particular child (e.g. gifts)
  • Threaten or use sanctions which have not been agreed
  • Feel you have to deal with every problem on your own
  • Use physical restraint unless they are causing harm to themselves or others
  • Spend time alone with children out of sight of other people
  • Contact them through private messaging
  • Keep communication with children secret, while still respecting appropriate confidences
  • Use child/young person’s personal data for other purposes than activities consented
  • Take photos or videos without consent
  • Engage with children or young people through your personal social media or mobile account
  • Assume that children should tell you anything you ask just because you are a worker
  • Promise to keep anything a secret, it may be that if a child or young person is being harmed or at risk of harm, that you will need to share that information but only on a need to know basis
  • Work in ways that puts your needs and interests before those of the children you work with
  • Discriminate or leave discrimination or bullying unchallenged
  • Interact with children you are working with from personal social media accounts


I agree to abide by the above code of conduct while working with children and young people



on behalf of  Trinity URC Plymouth



Name of worker: