Index – IICSA and other safeguarding issues

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) was established in 2015, and tasked with considering the extent to which state and non-state institutions “failed in their duty of care to protect children from sexual abuse and exploitation”, and to consider what action should be taken to identify and address other outstanding failings. It has produced 19 reports; the last was issued on 20 October 2022, and the inquiry is due to disband in the coming months.

Over this period we have published a number of updates an reviews, and links to those from posted after March 2018* are given below. (Scroll down to indicated heading on links to weekly round-ups).

Links to safeguarding issues in the Church of England following the publication of the final IICSA findings are provided below, and to those concerning spiritual abuse and spiritual influence in relation to UK elections. Other aspects are covered here.


2024

Fiona Scolding to review Pilavachi links to New WineNew Wine has issued a Press Release announcing the commissioning by its Trustees of Fiona Scolding KC to undertake an independent review into the allegations concerning Mike Pilavachi and how they relate to New Wine, (28 February 2024).

Safeguarding: General Synod vote. On 24 February 2024, the Church of England issued a Press Release on the speech of the Lead Bishop and the agreed motion on safeguarding following the publication of the Wilkinson and Jay reports, (24 February 2024).

Church of England safeguarding response group, The Church of England has announced the establishment of “a group to consider how to respond and plan next steps” following the publication of Sarah Wilkinson’s Review of the Independent Safeguarding Board and in light of the forthcoming Future of Church Safeguarding review to assist Professor Alexis Jay OBE in recommending a model for fully independent safeguarding within the Church, (24 January 2024).

Jay Review on Safeguarding in Church of England. On 21 February 2024, Professor Alexis Jay CBE issued a Press Release on her independent Report into the future of safeguarding in the Church of England. Below are reproduced the Press Release from Professor Jay, extracts from the report, and links from the Church of England Press Release, (21 January 2024).

2023

Independent Safeguarding Board: Review’s findings, on 11 December 2023 it was reported that the Review of the Independent Safeguarding Board (ISB) had been published. Extracts from the report’s Summary of Conclusions are reproduced, (12 December 2023).

Church of England National Safeguarding Standards, on 17 October, the Church of England published its five National Safeguarding Standards and accompanying Quality Assurance Framework, (22 October 2023).

Removal of plaque from church for safeguarding reasons, Hodge Ch. in Re Removal of a Commemorative Plaque for Safeguarding Reasons [2023] ECC Oxf 9[*] in his determination on a petition to remove an unauthorized commemorative plaque from within a church, (17 October 2023).

Former ISB – Church appoints interim commissioner, the Church of England issued a Press Release announcing that an interim commissioner of independent reviews has been appointed to ensure the work promised by the former ISB (Independent Safeguarding Board) can continue. Kevin Crompton, a senior safeguarding professional with experience in child and adult safeguarding and scrutiny in local authority setting, will start work this month, (14 September 2023,

Barrister to head Church’s ISB Review, 0n 11 September 2023, it was announced that the Archbishops’ Council had instructed Sarah Wilkinson, a barrister from Blackstone Chambers, to undertake a review of the first phase of the Church of England’s  Independent Safeguarding Board (ISB). She is an experienced public law practitioner who has represented the Government both as sole and junior counsel in a wide range of high-profile judicial review cases, (11 September 2023).

Conclusion of Mike Pilavachi investigation,  on 6 September 2023,  the Church of England issued the following Press Release, extracts of which are reproduced below. Soul Survivor Trustees have issued a response part of which is incorporated in the Church’s Press Release, (6 September 2023).

“Due regard” and statutory guidance (II), The first part of this analysis of “due regard” and “statutory guidance” considered guidance issued under the Dioceses, Pastoral and Mission Measure 2007 (“the 2007 Measure”), and that on “net zero” and, more recently, for “contested heritage“ issued under the Faculty Jurisdiction Rules 2015. This second part reviews guidance on Clergy Discipline and Safeguarding, and the general issues of the authority of guidance, and its practical application, (23 August 2023).

The future of safeguarding in the Church of England, The Future of Church Safeguarding Programme was set up to recommend a model for fully independent safeguarding within the Church of England. The Programme operates entirely independently from the Church and is led by Professor Alexis Jay OBE, (16 August 2023).

“Due regard” and statutory guidance (I), This post considers guidance produced under the Dioceses, Pastoral and Mission Measure 2007. Part II will address the authority of guidance; the application of guidance and sanctions; and Clergy Discipline and Safeguarding. (15 August 2023).

Seal of Confession: ELS Working Party Report, on 3 July 2023, the Ecclesiastical Law Society published the Report of its Working Party on the Seal of Confession which was established following the House of Bishops’ invitation for contributions towards the work of its own Working Party. An extract from the Report’s Section 10, Next Steps and Key Recommendations, is reproduced below; the full text of the Working Party’s Report is here, (3 July 2023).

Safeguarding: statement by the independent reviewer in the Smyth case, The Church of England published the statement from the independent reviewer in the Smyth case. Evidently his report has now been delayed even further, (18 April 2023).

Learning Lessons Review: Revd Michael Hall, On 21 July 2023, the Diocese of Oxford issued the Press Release concerning the independent report by Elaine and Patrick Hopkinson. In April 2022, the Diocese commissioned a safeguarding case review into allegations of spiritual abuse connected with St Margaret’s, Tylers Green, High Wycombe between 1981 and 2000. (21 July 2023).

IICSA Chair to develop proposals for CofE safeguarding, The Church of England has announced that Professor Alexis Jay is to develop proposals for fully independent structure for safeguarding scrutiny, (20 July 2023).

Safeguarding and the Church of England, L&RUK round up. (25 June 2023).

CofE Independent Safeguarding Board to be “reset”, “The Council has therefore agreed a reset. This will involve ending the contracts of two of the members of the Board, Jasvinder Sanghera and Steve Reeves, and of the acting Chair, Meg Munn…In the very immediate future, we have asked Meg Munn to provide business continuity for the remaining business of this phase of the ISB’s work”. (23 June 2023).

Trevor Devamanikkam review published, (11 May 2023).

Church of England & IICSA Final Report, the National Safeguarding Steering Group, the House of Bishops and the Archbishops’ Council have published a joint response to recommendations in relation to the safeguarding work of the Church of England. (12 January 2023).

2021 and 2022

IICSA statement from Church of England National Safeguarding Director, (26 October 2022).

IICSA, sacramental confession and mandatory reporting of child sexual abuse, Recommendation of the final IICSA Report on the introduction of mandatory reporting in England and Wales (20 October 2022).

Withholding religious divorce controlling and coercive behaviour: Moher, the law around a husband’s refusal to grant his wife a religious divorce. (19 May 2022).

Safeguarding case review: Revd Michael Hall, Tylers Green, Diocese of Oxford commissioned a safeguarding case review into allegations of spiritual abuse connected with St Margaret’s, Tylers Green, High Wycombe between 1981 and 2000…(3 May 2022).

Church of England: publication of detailed responses to IICSA report, The Church of England’s detailed responses to the recommendations of the IICSA report of October 2020 (20 March 2021).

2020

Church of England statement on IICSA report: update. Further to the Church of England statement on the publication of IICSA report, reported here on 6 November 2020, an update was issued on 16 November 2020, (17 November 2020).

IICSA Report: Roman Catholic Church, On Tuesday 10 November, the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) published its overarching investigation report into the Catholic ChurchThe Roman Catholic Church Investigation Report (“the Report”) is based on public hearings held during October and November 2019. (10 November 2020).

Church of England statement on publication of IICSA report.  The Church of England has issued the following statement on the publication by the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, IICSA, of its overarching investigation report into the Anglican Church in England and Wales. (6 October 2020).

IICSA Public Hearing – Child Protection in Religious Organisations The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) has announced that a Public hearing in Child Protection in Religious Organisations and Settings investigation will take place 16 – 27 March. (12 March 2020).

Synod support IICSA recommendations The Church of England has reported that General Synod voted unanimously to endorse the is response to the five recommendations from IICSA, and urged its national safeguarding steering group to work towards a more fully survivor-centred approach to safeguarding, including arrangements for redress for survivors. (12 February 2020).

Church of England’s response to IICSA The following summary of the Church of England’s response to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) has been published by Meg Munn, Independent Chair, National Safeguarding Panel Church of England. (7 February 2020).

2019

IICSA final hearing – Roman Catholic Church, (21 October 2019).

IICSA Inquiry – Residential Music Schools, (30 September 2019).

IICSA: Some more legal views, Comments on the seal of the confessional. Oral evidence from the Revd Canon Dr Rupert Bursell QC, 4 July 2019, in addition to the transcript, there were three evidence documents from Dr Bursell: ACE025279-1, (8 November 2017); ACE027523, (13 May 2019); and ACE027554, (23 May 2019). (6 July 2019).

IICSA Public Hearing in Anglican Church investigation – Week 2, (4 July 2019).

Church of England response to IICSA report, (29 June 2019).

IICSA Public Hearing in Anglican Church investigation – Week 1, (29 June 2019).

IICSA: publication of Roman Catholic Church Case Study, (20 June 2019).

IICSA: Diocese of Blackburn Letter, A letter from senior clergy in the Diocese of Blackburn, reflecting on IICSA reports on Chichester Diocese and Peter Ball, sent to all Clergy, Readers and Safeguarding Officers in the diocese. (18 June 2019).

IICSA Report: child abuse in religious communities. The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse has published a research report on child sexual abuse in religious institutions, based on accounts shared by survivors at its Truth Project. (30 May 2019).

IICSA Report into the Anglican Church. On Thursday 9 May 2019, the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, IICSA, published its 252-page report into the Church of England,  based on its case studies last year of the Diocese of Chichester and the response to allegations against the former Bishop of Gloucester, Peter Ball. (9 May 2019).

IICSA second seminar on mandatory reporting, (18 April 2019).

IICSA and mandatory reporting of child sexual abuse: update, The IICSA had consulted with the Victims and Survivors Forum, a self-nominating group of victims and survivors of child sexual abuse, published a summary of responses: Mandatory reporting of child sexual abuse: A survey of the Victims and Survivors Forum, in which the great majority of respondents from the Forum (88.6%) were in favour of introducing mandatory reporting. (17 April 2019).

IICSA 7th preliminary hearing on Anglican investigation, (16 January 2019).

2018

IICSA mandatory reporting seminar – 27th September, Details published of the first of two IICSA seminars on mandatory reporting, (19 September 2018).

Action on IICSA themes backed by General Synod, (7 July 2018)

IICSA Interim Report: Main points. The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) published its Interim Report on Wednesday 25 April 2018. (26 April 2018).

IICSA Interim Report: Church of England. Press Release from the Church of England. (25 April 2018).

IICSA hearings on Anglican Church – Closing Statement. The Church of England published the following Statement on the IICSA Inquiry into the institutional failures within the Anglican Church. In addition, the Archbishops of York & Canterbury have issued a joint Pastoral Letter“. (23 March 2018).


Spiritual abuse

General

The Law Commissions on electoral law and “undue spiritual influence”, (24 March 2020).

Church of England

“Spiritual abuse” – the “lessons learnt” reviews, A summary of the three lessons learnt reviews from the Oxford diocese, (31 July 2023).

Learning Lessons Review: Revd Michael Hall, the independent report by Elaine and Patrick Hopkinson. In April 2022, the Diocese commissioned a safeguarding case review into allegations of spiritual abuse connected with St Margaret’s, Tylers Green, High Wycombe between 1981 and 2000. (21 July 2023).

Stowe & Maids Moreton parishes: Independent safeguarding report, On 23 October 2020, Diocese of Oxford published the findings from the independent review into events in the parishes of Stowe and Maids Moreton; these concerned the murder of Peter Farquhar, a vulnerable member of the local church, by Ben Field, who also had roles within the church.

In addition to the Press Release, the Diocese has published a summary briefing [now archived] including the recommendations and diocesan responses, links to a “Seven Minute Briefing” and The Independent Safeguarding Review: lessons learnt from events in the parishes of Stowe and Maids Moreton, 2012-2019. (23 October 2020).

Review: Jonathan Fletcher and Emmanuel Church Wimbledon, On 5 December 2019, Thirtyone:eight announced that it had been commissioned by Emmanuel Church, Wimbledon to undertake an independent lessons learnt review concerning Jonathan Fletcher and Emmanuel Church. (5 December 2019).

Independent Case Review published – Oxford Diocese, Summary of Review’s findings on Revd Tim Davis, (11 September 2019).

IICSA: Some more legal views, Comments on the seal of the confessional –  the Revd Canon Dr Rupert Bursell KC, (6 July 2019).

Clerical abuse of spiritual power and authority: Penalty, Our post on 12 March 2018 reported the announcement by the Diocese of Oxford that a two-year penalty had been imposed on the Revd Timothy Davis, following the recent penalty hearing (26 March 2018).

Clerical abuse of spiritual power and authority, Tribunal finds priest guilty of abuse of spiritual power and authority; The Reverend Timothy Davis, Vicar of Christ Church Abingdon, (‘TD’), in respect of the mentoring he provided to a 15/16 year old schoolboy (‘W1’) whose family were members of his congregation. (9 January 2018).

Independent Case Review – Oxford Diocese, Diocese of Oxford Press Release on the establishment of an Independent Case Review of the diocesan safeguarding response to allegations of spiritual abuse in the case of the Revd Tim Davis. (12 December 2018).

IICSA: Some legal views, Evidence to IICSA Inquiry from “a venerable ecclesiastical lawyer” a.k.a. the Revd Canon Dr Rupert Bursell KC, ( 15 March 2018).

Allegations against clergy under the Clergy Discipline Measure, Dismissal of the allegations against The Reverend Timothy Blewett. We noted “[t[he decision in Blewett is notable in that it is a rare example of a matter going all the way to a Tribunal and then being dismissed. Although the hearing against The Reverend David Faulks in 2007 found “significant and culpable financial inefficiency and incompetence”, it rejected any suggestion of dishonesty and imposed a conditional discharge. (L&RUK post 2 February 2018; the hearing took place on 23 and 24 March 2017).

Permission to Officiate – the new policy, A summary of some of the more important components of the new Policy on Granting Permission to Officiate (PTO)  issued by the Church of England’s House of Bishops Delegation Committee on Friday 20 July 2018. (23 July 2018).

Confession & safeguarding: Canterbury diocese guidelines, The diocese of Canterbury Statement on Confession & Safeguarding. The post reproduces the section within the diocesan guidance on safeguarding which relates to confession. (30 May 2018).

Exeter Diocese CDM complaint not proved, Successfully defence of clergyman charged with conduct unbecoming by forming sexual relationship with man 22 years his junior. (4 May 2018).

Revd Timothy Davis: Tribunal and penalty, The penalty hearing in relation to the decision of the CDM Tribunal on 28 December 2017; Church of England officials believed that this was the first occasion on which a tribunal had convicted a priest of spiritual abuse”. (12 March 2018).

“Misconduct in Public Office” revisited, Following the publication of An Abuse of Faith – the independent report by Dame Moira Gibb into the Church’s handling of the Bishop Peter Ball case, the post  considers two of the aspects raised that have been raised – “misconduct in public office”, and membership of the House of Lords. (30 June 2017).

“Undue spiritual influence” – where next? Implications of independent report on electoral fraud and “undue spiritual influence”, (30 August 2016).

CofE abuse inquiry findings – Elliott Review, Response of Bishop of Crediton, Sarah Mullally, re: compensation and apologised to a survivor of clerical sexual abuse, named as Garth Moore (16 March 2016)

Other faith bodies

Withholding religious divorce controlling and coercive behaviour: Moher, the law around a husband’s refusal to grant his wife a religious divorce. (19 May 2022).

The nun who sued her Mother Superior – the strange case of Saurin v Starr, In a guest post, Neil Addison recalls a judgment handed down this day 150 years ago that was something of a cause célèbre in its time…. (28 February 2019).

Separating medical practice and religion: Brayshaw, Case note on Brayshaw v The Partners of Apsley Surgery & Anor [2018] EWHC 3286 (QB). (7 December 2018).

Historical sexual abuse and the Jehovah’s Witnesses: A v Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, Another instalment in the developing law on vicarious liability for historic sexual abuse, (22 June 2015).


Spiritual influence

“Spiritual influence” and elections – an update, An update to our 2015 post which has attracted significant interest following recent events. (9 May 2024).

The Law Commissions on electoral law and “undue spiritual influence”, The Law Commission of England and Wales and the Scottish Law Commission have published their joint report on Electoral Law. One of the issues that the two Commissions have had to deal with is that of “undue influence”. Its Terms of Reference were to “review the law relating to the conduct of elections and referendums in the UK, including challenges and associated criminal offences”. (24 March 2020).

“Undue spiritual influence” – where next? Implications of independent report on electoral fraud and “undue spiritual influence”, Sir Eric Pickles’ Report. A report to government, not a report of government. (30 August 2016).

“Spiritual influence” and the law, Case note on Erlam & Ors v Rahman & Anor [2015] EWHC (QB), and this addresses a number of aspects of election law in relation to a petition brought by four members of the public (4 May 2015)

“Spiritual influence” and elections updated: Lutfur Rahman found guilty of illegal electoral practices, (23 April 2015).

“Spiritual influence” and elections, Election Court hearing of the challenge to the re-election of Lutfur Rahman, the Mayor of the London Borough of Tower Hamlets. Rahman is accused, inter alia, of securing re-election last year by telling Muslims that it was their religious duty to vote for him, (11 February 2015).


* Last updated, 8 April 2024 at 16:50.

Cite this article as: David Pocklington, "Index – IICSA and other safeguarding issues" in Law & Religion UK, 17 January 2023, https://lawandreligionuk.com/2023/01/17/iicsa-index/

 

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