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Safeguarding: protecting ourselves and others

Diocese welcomes findings of Serious Case Review

The Diocese of Oxford has welcomed the publication of the Serious Case Review published on Wednesday 1 February by the West Berkshire Local Safeguarding Children Board.

The report was commissioned by the Local Safeguarding Children Board last year to look into how organisations handled allegations of sexual offences against children, which were committed by people in positions of trust. It followed the sentencing of two men earlier that year for separately committing sexual offences against children. One of those was Robert Neill, a teacher sentenced to 21 years for offences between 1986 and 2003, and the other was the Revd Peter Jarvis, who was sentenced to 15 months for offences committed between 2008 and 2012.

The Bishop of Reading, the Rt Revd Andrew Proud, said: “We welcome the findings of the Serious Case Review. We have created an action plan in response to the findings in the report and have already begun to implement the recommendations.

“The Diocese of Oxford takes safeguarding extremely seriously and we are investing more resource in training, following new national guidelines.”

Referring to the case of Mr Jarvis, he added: “Any case like this is a matter of sorrow and regret for the Church of England. We recognise that the suffering of survivors of sexual abuse is profound and long lasting.

“The Church of England will not tolerate abusive behaviour in its clergy or anyone else for whom we have pastoral responsibility. We take allegations of abuse extremely seriously and always work with the statutory authorities to ensure abusers are brought to justice and that pastoral care is offered to those directly affected.”

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