We deliver services to the agencies
and ministries of the Diocese of Parramatta
Safe CommunityIntegrityVoiceJustice

OFS Logo Rev RGB1.1
bishop-1

Statement of Commitment from our Bishop

Most Reverend Bishop Vincent Long OFM Conv DD STL

“The Diocese is committed to being a community of safeguarding. This means we have zero tolerance of abuse in any form. We promise to do everything we can so no child or other person in our care is harmed again. As part of this, our job is to make sure everyone who works or acts for the Church understands and recognises the Standards as an integral part of their understanding of what it means to be engaged in the life of the Church”

A definition of Safeguarding

The Diocese of Parramatta is committed to being a community of safeguarding that actively promotes the dignity and rights of children and of all other persons, particularly those who may be at risk.

The Safeguarding Office delivers advice and support to the parishes, agencies and ministries of the Catholic Diocese of Parramatta to ensure the Diocese is safe for all people. The Office also receives and manages concerns, reports or complaints regarding the conduct of people who are responsible for leading ministry or providing services in the Diocese.

In all of our works, ministries and activities, we respond to the call of the Gospel to protect those who are vulnerable by fostering culture, education, systems, processes and environments where the safety and wellbeing of children and vulnerable people is paramount.

JararaPlaque.jpg

Acknowledgement of Country

In the spirit of reconciliation, we acknowledge the traditional custodians of the lands in which the Diocese of Parramatta sits, the land of the Darug and Gundungurra people.

We would like to pay our respects to the Aboriginal Elders past, present and future for they hold the traditions, memories and wisdom of Mother Earth on which we place our feet upon today.


Artwork by Joshua Sly

Aboriginal Education Assistant and Biripi Artist.

Acknowledgement to survivors of abuse

We acknowledge the lifelong trauma of abuse victims, survivors and their families, the failure of churches in Australia to protect, believe and respond to children and vulnerable adults, and the consequent breaches of community trust (CPSL).

TreeBlossoms_5378_1.0

News & Events

Keep up to date with news and upcoming events

Office for Safeguarding and Professional Standards Newsletter Issue 3

Office for Safeguarding and Professional Standards third newsletter includes news on the Revised Diocese Safeguarding Framework, recent local and international initiatives, Parish Safeguarding Toolkits and much more! To access the newsletter, ...
Read More

Office for Safeguarding and Professional Standards Newsletter Issue 2

Office for Safeguarding and Professional Standards second newsletter includes news on Children's Week 2019, a new Guide called the Complaint Handling Guide: Upholding The Rights of Children and Young People and much ...
Read More

Creating a Safe Church From within – Two Days with Fr Hans Zollner SJ Summary Report

Over Friday 31 August and Saturday 1 September 2018, approximately 600 people from the Dioceses of Parramatta and Wollongong, together with many members of religious congregations and several other dioceses, ...
Read More

Office for Safeguarding and Professional Standards Newsletter

Office for Safeguarding and Professional Standards first newsletter includes an update on new resources to support our agencies and ministries in safeguarding. Also included in the newsletter are recent local ...
Read More

Promoting Sunny

1800 RESPECT have created a new App called Sunny, which connects women with disability impacted by violence and abuse to services. It is free to download for iPhone and Android ...
Read More

National Catholic Safeguarding Standards (Safeguarding Standards)

National Catholic Safeguarding Standards (Safeguarding Standards) On May 30 2019, Catholic Professional Standards Limited (CPSL) published the 10 Safeguarding Standards to provide a framework for each Catholic entity, ministry and ...
Read More
Mobile-img

Journaling is a useful tool for assessing and tracking what’s happening in your relationship.

The records you keep in the Iris app can help you talk to someone about what you are experiencing, how you can work out what is best for your relationship and most importantly assist in your journey to safety.

Mobile-img
Mobile-img

Having a supportive conversation with someone who experienced childhood trauma can be life changing.

Dr Cathy Kezelman
President, Blue Knot Foundation

It’s a big thing for people to listen and take note of what we went through.

Katie
Child sexual abuse survivor
hands-2906458__480

Being abused in faith-based communities can particularly tarnish concepts of God and create additional confusion.

blueknot.org.au
National Centre of Excellence for Complex Trauma
teen on phone1

Telling somebody is the first step

If you're being hurt by someone at Church, it's OK to tell somebody. No matter what you might be going through, no matter how alone or worried you feel, it is super important that you tell, text, message, email somebody what is happening. Abuse is sometimes not talked about out of fear that you will get into trouble, that you somehow caused it to happen or that you won't be believed.
 
  • Abuse in never OK - no matter who is doing it or what they do in the Church community.
  • Abuse is never your fault- no matter where it happened in the Church community or how it happened.

Telling somebody is the first step. If you don't get help at first, then don't give up- tell someone else you can trust until you get the help you need.

Telling somebody is the first step

If you're being hurt by someone at Church, it's OK to tell somebody. No matter what you might be going through, no matter how alone or worried you feel, it is super important that you tell, text, message, email somebody what is happening. Abuse is sometimes not talked about out of fear that you will get into trouble, that you somehow caused it to happen or that you won't be believed.

  • Abuse in never OK - no matter who is doing it or what they do in the Church community.
  • Abuse is never your fault- no matter where it happened in the Church community or how it happened.

Telling somebody is the first step. If you don't get help at first, then don't give up- tell someone else you can trust until you get the help you need.

Facts about trauma

  • The Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) study explored the strong link between childhood abuse and subsequent physical and mental health challenges.
    See video.
  • For many First Nations survivors, the trauma of child sexual abuse could not be separated from the inter-generational trauma associated with child removal ... other First Nations survivors pointed to connections with family, community and culture as sources of strength and resilience.
    (Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, Final Report, Volume 5, p 19.)
  • Being trauma-informed means being aware of the impacts of stress on the body and brain. It also means that you understand that people with experiences of interpersonal trauma have had their trust violated and may treat even your well-meant conversation with suspicion.
    (Blue Knot Foundation, Talking about Trauma: Guide to Everyday Conversations for the General Public.)
  • Understanding the connection between prior trauma and current behaviour is an important step towards healing. Often people do develop the skills necessary to survive. At times, people can feel as though they are barely surviving. That they’re barely functioning or not functioning at all. It is important to acknowledge that ‘good enough’ functioning is an achievement.
    (Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, Final Report, Volume 3, p 26.)