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Suspensions Process for Commissioners

Information for Commissioners

The Suspension Process

Introduction

As part of your Commissioner's role in Scouts, it may be necessary to suspend a volunteer’s involvement for a period of time. Suspending a volunteer is a neutral act and is intended to protect Scouting and all the individuals concerned. 

Suspensions apply to the volunteer’s entire membership. This means suspended volunteers aren’t allowed in any Scout meetings, events and premises until the suspension is lifted. This also means the volunteer is suspended from all roles they might have, including across Groups, Districts, Counties/Areas/Regions (Scotland) and at Headquarters. 

Commissioners should read this guidance in conjunction with POR Chapter 16, where the suspensions process is explained.    

If you have a Safeguarding concern related to a volunteer, please follow the yellow card and contact the HQ Safeguarding team. The team will be able to support you. You can contact them on +44(0)20 8433 7164 or safeguarding@scouts.org.uk.

Suspending a volunteer is a neutral act and is intended to protect the movement and all the individuals concerned. 

It allows time and space for any necessary investigation or enquiry to take place, in as fair and objective manner as possible. It prevents situations that could give rise to further concerns or allegations and could potentially cause further compromise. 

You’ll find a detailed list of reasons for suspending a volunteer in POR Rule 16.4

If the reason for suspension is related to a safeguarding concern, the headquarters Safeguarding Team are there to support you throughout the process. You can contact them on +44(0)20 8433 7164 or safeguarding@scouts.org.uk

At least 2 Commissioners need to be involved in the suspensions process. The first Commissioner suspends the volunteer, and the next Commissioner authorises the suspension. For example, if the District Commissioner is the suspending Commissioner, then the County Commissioner is the authorising Commissioner. 

When you are considering a suspension, it is important that you discuss this with the Commissioner authorising the suspension first. 

The suspending commissioner agrees the suspension outcome with the Appointments Advisory Committee (AAC), and the authorising Commissioner approves the outcome.  

The suspended volunteer can also have an independent Scouts volunteer to act as liaison person. Read the section “Suspending the volunteer” to find out more information about the liaison person.   

If the reason for suspension is related to a safeguarding concern, the headquarters Safeguarding Team are there to support you throughout the process. You can contact them on +44(0)20 8433 7164 or safeguarding@scouts.org.uk

The key stages, decision makers and outcomes within the suspensions process.