Reporting a concern to safeguarding
The welfare of children and young people is our priority and everyone has a duty to report safeguarding concerns. You have the right to report any concerns in confidence and free from harassment.
All adults must follow the Yellow Card Code of Conduct. Currently, the Yellow Card asks volunteers to report concerns to their Group Scout Leader or District Commissioner.
We’re making some changes to our Yellow Card. From 1 January 2024, the new requirement is for everyone to report any concern directly to the UK HQ Safeguarding Team. This makes sure that we’re aware of concerns as soon as possible and can put measures in place to minimise risks to children, young people and adults at risk.
A safeguarding concern could be about:
- A breach of the Yellow Card or Green Card
- Police or statutory agency involvement regarding a member
- A welfare concern
- Suspicions that a child could be at risk of harm
You must report all safeguarding concerns to the UK HQ Safeguarding Team as soon as possible (always within 24 hours), whether you are told about them directly or indirectly. If you are not sure what to do, or you are not sure if a concern has been reported, contact the UK HQ Safeguarding Team.
The UK HQ Safeguarding team will be on hand to provide you with advice, support and guidance from the moment you report a concern. If you inform another member about the concern, then both individuals must then report direct to the UK HQ Safeguarding team.
This applies to all concerns, no matter how insignificant they might seem or when they happened or whether they happened inside or outside of Scouts.
You can report by:
- Phoning 020 8433 7164 (9am – 5pm weekdays)
- Phoning 0345 300 1818 (out-of-hours)
- Emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
- Using the Safeguarding Reporting Form
If a child or young person is at immediate risk of harm call 999 or 112 and ask for the police. Tell the UK HQ Safeguarding Team you have done this.
You can also call the NSPCC on 0808 800 5000 or email them at email@example.com.
Another change we’re making to the Yellow Card is that anyone reporting a concern who has a personal relationship or family connection with those involved needs to step back from the situation and inform the UK HQ Safeguarding Team.
If you have a query regarding an existing safeguarding concern, please contact the Safeguarding Officer or Manager via their direct dial and/or email.
Safeguarding reporting form
Please complete as much of this form as possible including essential information before contacting the UK HQ Safeguarding Team.Download the reporting form
Reporting non-recent child abuse
If you were abused in childhood (up to 18 years old) in Scouts, you can report this to the UK HQ Safeguarding Team. It's never too late to report abuse you experienced.Get advice and support for non-recent abuse
Information on the safeguarding process.Learn more about the process
Safeguarding Procedures for Commissioners
Guidance for Commissioners on safeguarding procedures.Discover the Safeguarding procedures
The roles and responsibilities of a Safeguarding Adviser
The role of the Safeguarding Adviser is to support the development of safeguarding awareness in their local areas.Discover more about accountabilities
The Yellow Card
The Yellow Card is available to view and download on our website.Read The Yellow Card
As adults in Scouting, the safety of young people is our priority. We have created a bank of resources that you can share with young people. Including important safeguarding videos which you can share with young people and their parents. As well as 'Staying Safe Leaflets' and information on anti-bullying.
We have information that parents and carers need to know about safety and safeguarding.
It's the responsibility of all adults in Scouting to help develop a caring and supportive atmosphere, where bullying in any form is unacceptable. Read our anti-bullying guide and your responsibilities within our anti-bullying policy.
The Orange Card
The Orange card is a code of practice for young people. It's the policy of The Scout Association to safeguard the welfare of all members by protecting them from neglect and from physical, sexual and emotional harm.Read the Orange Card
This safeguarding training’s designed to help you stay up-to-date on safeguarding practice and your responsibilities as a member of Scouts.Take the eLearning today