Last updated 11th March 2020
This page contains everything parishes need to fully engage with Past Cases Review 2 (PCR2) and it is accessible via the new PCR2 panel on this website's homepage. It is also accessible under the Safeguarding tab on the homepage.
This is a summary of what follows for reference:
We want to ensure our churches and church-related activities are as safe as possible for children and for vulnerable adults.
An initial ‘past case review’ in The Church of England took place around a decade ago to identify any ongoing risks to children and young people.
All Dioceses, including our Diocese, have now been asked to extend the review in 2019-20 to include children, young people and vulnerable adults. This latest process is known as Past Cases Review 2 (PCR2).
Our Diocesan Bishop, Rt Rev. Julian Henderson, the Bishop of Blackburn, sent a letter on February 28, 2020 to all parishes (see Core Documents below) which includes further important information to help them work with the Diocesan Safeguarding Team and to ensure that collectively we complete the review promptly and effectively. All parishes MUST read and act on the information provided.
These website pages are also designed to be a 'one stop shop' of everything required by parishes for engagement with the PCR2 process.
In his letter Bishop Julian (pictured) says: "Thank you for all you do to make our churches a safe place for people to worship.
"PCR2 is a central part of the Church of England’s proactive approach to ensuring our churches are safe environments for everyone.
"The purpose of the review is to identify where abuse allegations have not been managed appropriately, or safely, or with the needs of the vulnerable at the centre of decision making.
"The welfare of children or of adults at risk of abuse (vulnerable) is of paramount importance to us in undertaking this review."
Survivors at the heart of PCR2
Here at the Diocese of Blackburn and also nationally, survivors voices are vital to PCR2. This approach was underpinned here with the issuing of what has become known as 'The Blackburn Letter' to our parishes in summer 2019.
The recent powerful two-part BBC documentary: ‘Exposed: The Church’s Darkest Secret’ was a stark reminder of the damage that can be done to people’s lives when the Church does not listen and does not respond well.
Speaking on BBC Radio Lancashire immediately after the documentary aired Rt Rev. Philip North, the Bishop of Burnley said: “There is no such thing as (what is often described as) ‘historic abuse’. If you are a survivor … even if the episode happened 20 or 30 years ago the trauma is still real; but if we don’t listen to those voices, we are re-abusing.
"It is a fact that healing for survivors of abuse can only truly begin when we are not afraid to bring the shadows into the light and try to see through God’s merciful eyes."
Core documents for PCR2
(All of these downloadable documents have also been sent via email to parishes with the Bishop's letter.)
Further advice and resources for parishes
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Parishes may have further questions about the PCR2 process that aren't covered by the information we have provided alongside the Bishop's letter.
If that is the case, then your first port of call should be these Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) as you may find the answer you are looking for here ...
Articles for parish use
As well as this regularly updated website page on PCR2 which is a 'one stop shop' for everything you need, there will be regular updates on PCR2 for parishes in a number of ways.
These will include articles in the Diocesan magazine 'The See'; ebulletin updates ... in Parish Update (every two weeks); Safeguarding Matters (quarterly) as well as stories in the news section of this website.
In addition, here are number of articles parishes can use in their local communications, some of which require adding local links within the text (where shown) to complete them ...
Remember too that general communications advice is always available 24/7 on the communications resources area of this website.
Further reading: useful background information
All of the material in this section is specifically designed to be available for parishes to read and can also be downloaded for use in local parish communications ...
(More articles and website links will be added here over time.)
General advice and contact details
In addition to this dedicated PCR2 'one stop shop' page the safeguarding team for this Diocese has its own set of pages on this website which can be explored by starting here and then navigating further using the menu on the right of the page you land on.
Meanwhile, anyone wanting further information, or to make disclosures of church-related abuse, can make direct contact as follows:
Diocesan Safeguarding Team
Recognising this may not feel safe for those with a direct experience of abuse from within the Church, if you would prefer to speak to someone else in the first instance contact:
Anyone can use these additional routes to provide information or to raise concerns regarding abuse within the Church of England context; whether they are reporting issues relating to children, adults or seeking to whistleblow about poor safeguarding practice.
Your concerns will always be taken seriously.
Finally, please direct any media enquiries you may receive about the Past Cases Review 2 to Ronnie Semley, our Diocesan Communications Manager on 01254 503416 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Ronnie Semley; page created February 2020