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Source: (consider it) Thread: Bunch of bell ends
Penny S
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And, if a teacher, all fellow staff banned from any contact with you.
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Marvin the Martian

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quote:
Originally posted by Lamb Chopped:
It sucks horribly to be the one accused. But the one thing you CAN'T do, if you are innocent and wish to remain in the right, is to circumvent the safeguards and restrictions put in place, however unreasonable they may seem.

Even to the extent of never being allowed to go back to church? Or maybe having to move to a different area?

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Hail Gallaxhar

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Marvin the Martian

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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
Because the alternative is letting abusers get a pass - and continue with what they're doing - because there isn't enough evidence for a conviction.

It's not "letting abusers get a pass" if no abuse happened. That's kinda the point.

quote:
In the case of "innocent" activities which only had the potential to be abusive and which were misconstrued, then it is hard cheese.
Virtually anything has the potential to be abusive. My 2-year old nephew loves to sit on my lap and have a cuddle - should I prevent him from doing so because such an action could be misconstrued, and such misconstrual could lead to me being banned from ever seeing him again?

quote:
In the case of actual false allegations, that is a slightly different thing.

It seems to me that in the context of a church group, the difference way well be if someone was getting rather too "friendly" with youngsters and wasn't taking the hint to back off. And comparing that to a false claim that someone who had actually instigated an abusive relationship.

The former might just have been clumsy behaviour mixed in with bone-headed refusal to listen to the advice of others. It might have never led to the abuse everyone is afraid of happening on their watch.

Who knows. But do we really want to let things get to the serious category before taking action?

Yes. Because otherwise you're moving quickly down the road of banning virtually all interactions between adults and kids. There must be a middle ground, some level of reasonableness to be found.

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Hail Gallaxhar

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mr cheesy
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
It's not "letting abusers get a pass" if no abuse happened. That's kinda the point.

Sorry, you think there is only abuse of children when there is a conviction, is that right? So Saville didn't actually abuse anyone..?

quote:
Virtually anything has the potential to be abusive. My 2-year old nephew loves to sit on my lap and have a cuddle - should I prevent him from doing so because such an action could be misconstrued, and such misconstrual could lead to me being banned from ever seeing him again?
No, because that on it's own is normal behaviour.

It is highly unlikely that any church anywhere is going to be concerned about a member of a family carrying or holding hands of a small child they know well, this is a strawman.

Consider this though: a Christian camp leader decides that it would be funny to take photos of the smallest boys having a water-pistol fight in shared baths in the bathroom.

In and of itself, this might be nothing. Or it might be something. If parents and/or other authorities found out, they might well remove the leader even without a conviction for anything more serious.

quote:
Yes. Because otherwise you're moving quickly down the road of banning virtually all interactions between adults and kids. There must be a middle ground, some level of reasonableness to be found.
The line in most circumstances is that you probably shouldn't be touching a child very much that isn't yours. The more touching and the more invasion of space that there is, the more problematic it is.

I think most people understand that some touching of a child is unavoidable, but that there is a clear point at which it is getting problematic and that action needs to be taken.

Whilst a family member is obviously much more touchy with a small child than would be acceptable with other people, there is clearly a point where even that becomes unacceptable.

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my new book: Biblical But Bollocks. Available in all good bookshops.

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Marvin the Martian

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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
It's not "letting abusers get a pass" if no abuse happened. That's kinda the point.

Sorry, you think there is only abuse of children when there is a conviction, is that right? So Saville didn't actually abuse anyone..?
I think that such things as false accusations exist, and if an investigation finds no evidence of wrongdoing then the accused should not be treated as if they were guilty anyway.

quote:
The line in most circumstances is that you probably shouldn't be touching a child very much that isn't yours. The more touching and the more invasion of space that there is, the more problematic it is.
Sometimes when I go to my brothers house they have kids from the neighbourhood round as well as my nephews. One of the girls (she's about 3) is almost as keen on having a cuddle as the nephew I mentioned earlier. Where does that fall in relation to your line?

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Hail Gallaxhar

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mr cheesy
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
Sometimes when I go to my brothers house they have kids from the neighbourhood round as well as my nephews. One of the girls (she's about 3) is almost as keen on having a cuddle as the nephew I mentioned earlier. Where does that fall in relation to your line?

I wouldn't touch someone else's child unless their parent was there and made it clear it was acceptable.

But I'm not in child protection, I don't know what others do.

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my new book: Biblical But Bollocks. Available in all good bookshops.

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Doc Tor
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Marvin, if the best you can say about the teachers at your kids' school is "None of them have actually been convicted of child abuse", I bet you a pound to a penny you and all the other parents would withdraw their kids tomorrow.

The systems are in place for a very good reason, reasons that have been outlined, and experienced, by several previous posters. Criminal prosecution is a (rightly) very high bar to cross, but just because there aren't any charges doesn't mean there isn't any evidence. A multi-agency investigation isn't something that happens just for shits and giggles.

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Lost in Space

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BroJames
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And in the case that gave rise to this thread no criminal charges were brought, and an interim sexual risk order was not made permanent, but other safeguarding measures were put in place.

Under the policy operative in my patch they would be designed to avoid the risk of harm to the vulnerable, and to avoid situations where the person about whom a concern had been raised might be at risk of further allegations.

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Stercus Tauri
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
It's not "letting abusers get a pass" if no abuse happened. That's kinda the point.

Sorry, you think there is only abuse of children when there is a conviction, is that right? So Saville didn't actually abuse anyone..?
I think that such things as false accusations exist, and if an investigation finds no evidence of wrongdoing then the accused should not be treated as if they were guilty anyway.

quote:
The line in most circumstances is that you probably shouldn't be touching a child very much that isn't yours. The more touching and the more invasion of space that there is, the more problematic it is.
Sometimes when I go to my brothers house they have kids from the neighbourhood round as well as my nephews. One of the girls (she's about 3) is almost as keen on having a cuddle as the nephew I mentioned earlier. Where does that fall in relation to your line?

One of our friends is a Sunday School teacher, and she babysits some of the same children during the week. One of them once asked her why she would cuddle them at home but not at church. I don't know how she answered, and I don't know how I would explain it either. Maybe, "I am more dangerous surrounded by other people at church than I am alone with you at home"?

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Thay haif said. Quhat say thay, Lat thame say (George Keith, 5th Earl Marischal)

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ThunderBunk

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Bad cases made bad laws; catastrophically bad cases, catastrophically bad laws, likewise procedures.

Whatever do you did to the least of these my brethren you did to me, according to the Beatitudes. If a person has suffered, then that is terrible.

If the damage is purely to a process, the condemnation does not stand. Can a Christian community really allow that kind of paranoia to run riot? Surely, it has a duty to act gently - firmly, where necessary, but gently, and in defence of people, not of procedures.

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Currently mostly furious, and occasionally foolish. Normal service may resume eventually. Or it may not. And remember children, "feiern ist wichtig".

Foolish, potentially deranged witterings

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Zacchaeus
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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
quote:
Originally posted by Zacchaeus:
Rightly or wrongly, they can probably name him because there is no current criminal investigation. So they are not doing anything illegal, though maybe immoral
But very sadly if the bell ringers hadn't forced the issue with the publicity, by which they were trying to force the Minster’s hand, then it would have stayed quiet and the press would not have dug the name out

Well defamation isn't a criminal issue.

That's why it's hedged around with words like 'suggests'

In a hypothetical situation whereby someone was rather annoyed that a newspaper had published their name in connection with an incident, it would be down to the publisher to prove it was true - or that there was public interest in printing it in a defamation case.

I'm not a lawyer, I've no idea what would happen in a situation like this. For me it just feels better not to use his name.


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Lamb Chopped
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
quote:
Originally posted by Lamb Chopped:
It sucks horribly to be the one accused. But the one thing you CAN'T do, if you are innocent and wish to remain in the right, is to circumvent the safeguards and restrictions put in place, however unreasonable they may seem.

Even to the extent of never being allowed to go back to church? Or maybe having to move to a different area?
The "move away" thing is not a safeguarding restriction anywhere I've ever heard of. It CAN result from unbridled gossip, which gives you a case for slander.

The "don't go back to church" thing is similarly unlikely. I know a case of attempted murder (extreme recklessness with a willingness to harm) where the perp was only told by the pastor to go to a different service. In the US, at least, there would have to be a restraining order to prevent church attendance altogether legally. Which is very unlikely, given that they can simply tell you to stick to certain times or activities.

Please realize that I'm not saying the harm done to an innocent accusee doesn't matter. It does. I'm only saying that fucking around with the restrictions isn't going to help anybody.

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Er, this is what I've been up to (book).
Oh, that you would rend the heavens and come down!

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Zacchaeus
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quote:
Originally posted by Zacchaeus:
quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
quote:
Originally posted by Zacchaeus:
Rightly or wrongly, they can probably name him because there is no current criminal investigation. So they are not doing anything illegal, though maybe immoral
But very sadly if the bell ringers hadn't forced the issue with the publicity, by which they were trying to force the Minster’s hand, then it would have stayed quiet and the press would not have dug the name out

Well defamation isn't a criminal issue.

That's why it's hedged around with words like 'suggests'

In a hypothetical situation whereby someone was rather annoyed that a newspaper had published their name in connection with an incident, it would be down to the publisher to prove it was true - or that there was public interest in printing it in a defamation case.

I'm not a lawyer, I've no idea what would happen in a situation like this. For me it just feels better not to use his name.


I'll try and get it right this time [Hot and Hormonal]

that's why its's hedged around with words like 'suggests'

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BroJames
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
quote:
Originally posted by Lamb Chopped:
It sucks horribly to be the one accused. But the one thing you CAN'T do, if you are innocent and wish to remain in the right, is to circumvent the safeguards and restrictions put in place, however unreasonable they may seem.

Even to the extent of never being allowed to go back to church? Or maybe having to move to a different area?
In my area there is a well-established protocol for enabling people who are subject to safeguarding restrictions to continue to worship. Although if it has been a high profile issue they may find it hard to continue in the same congregation.

I imagine that in that respect, if X in this business was a regular worshipper, it will be a problem he has already encountered because of the previous investigations and the publicity they had already received.

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BroJames
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The Church Times has now produced the fullest report I've seen on this affair.
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mr cheesy
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Possibly worth quoting a section of the statement from the Minster:

quote:
“Even after an investig­ation has taken place, and even if there is no prosecution achieved as an outcome of those investigations, if the authority, which in our case is the Chapter of York, cannot feel confident about an individual and their activity, and the way that they conduct themselves . . . if the organisation still feels there is a real or perceived risk, it can take a decision to exclude a person from a particular area of activity. That is what the Chapter did in relation to a member of the bell-ringing team.

”There has to be a process in which the church authorities have to look at the papers after any legal process has finished, and make a judgement as to whether or not they feel that the person, doing this particular activity, should be allowed to continue. In some circumstances, conditions are allowed, such as ensuring they are not on their own with people of a certain age-group. Chapter discussed the whole case with other agencies, and decided to exclude this person from the bell tower, but not the rest of church.”



--------------------
my new book: Biblical But Bollocks. Available in all good bookshops.

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BroJames
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Frankly it all looks complex and messy, and quite far from the simple story of "managerial abuse" that first hit the media. The balance between maintaining confidentiality where there is cause for concern, but no admitted or proved allegations, and ensuring that appropriate safeguarding measures are in place is a very tricky one.

If it is correct that X's
quote:
name is said to have been included recently in a list of York Minster ringers to form the Minster band for the 2017 National 12-bell Striking Competition.
it is hard to see how this can have been consistent with his exclusion from the tower at the minster, and the Church Times's report of a diocesan-wide notice (issued in April 2015 and since extended) advising incumbents to exclude him from other bell towers in the diocese.

Indeed, in the face of this advice to incumbents in the diocese it is hard to see how the Dean and Chapter could sensibly have allowed the minster tower to be an exception. And the decision of the powers the be amongst the York Minster Society of Change Ringers to include him in that list of ringers for the competition (for which practice together would be a standard requirement) does suggest that as a group they were not accepting his exclusion, or taking the safeguarding concerns seriously.

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Teekeey Misha
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
And you're all OK with that? With knowing that your reputation, hobbies and livelihood can all be taken away by one kid with a grudge against you?

Clearly I'm not particularly "OK" with it, hence I wrote "Sucks, doesn't it?". Whether I (or you or anyone else) like it or not, it is reality and, much as it may suck, a necessary reality.

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Misha
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BroJames
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A large part of good safeguarding practice is not just about protecting the vulnerable, but also about avoiding situations where those working with them might be subject to false allegations. The safeguarding requirement, for example, that an adult working with children should not be left alone with a child is not just to protect the child, but also to protect the adult from a false accusation.
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Ricardus
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Just read that Church Times article.

£700 to get the bells down? [Ultra confused] [Ultra confused] [Ultra confused]

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Then the dog ran before, and coming as if he had brought the news, shewed his joy by his fawning and wagging his tail. -- Tobit 11:9 (Douai-Rheims)

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Sioni Sais
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quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
Just read that Church Times article.

£700 to get the bells down? [Ultra confused] [Ultra confused] [Ultra confused]

£70 to get them down, another £630 to get them down safely in one piece.

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If someone takes a shot at President Trump will his bodyguards shout "Donald Duck"?

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anne
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quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
Just read that Church Times article.

£700 to get the bells down? [Ultra confused] [Ultra confused] [Ultra confused]

£700 quid to get the bells rung down in an timely fashion by a company that was not part of the problem, was prepared to work within all relevant policies, were definitely not going to try to make publicity for a cause out of the request and could not be criticised as incapable or unsuitable by any group who wanted to further muddy the waters? I bet that felt like a bargain!

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‘I would have given the Church my head, my hand, my heart. She would not have them. She did not know what to do with them. She told me to go back and do crochet' Florence Nightingale

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BroJames
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Plus it's a four hour round trip from Loughborough which would certainly add to the cost, and you're paying of the time of a professional. It doesn't looks out of order compared to these hourly rates for various trades.
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mr cheesy
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quote:
Originally posted by anne:
could not be criticised as incapable or unsuitable by any group who wanted to further muddy the waters? I bet that felt like a bargain!

Noting the final sentence of that CT article, I'm not sure the waters are quite as unsullied as might be thought.

I'm not sure about you people, but my brain is properly poached several times over by this story.

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my new book: Biblical But Bollocks. Available in all good bookshops.

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Zacchaeus
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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
quote:
Originally posted by anne:
could not be criticised as incapable or unsuitable by any group who wanted to further muddy the waters? I bet that felt like a bargain!

Noting the final sentence of that CT article, I'm not sure the waters are quite as unsullied as might be thought.

I'm not sure about you people, but my brain is properly poached several times over by this story.

The ramifications of that certainly make the mind boggle..
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Zacchaeus
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What it all says to me is:-

Man caught in safeguarding issue – without criminal charges - but in the current climate it’s enough that the dean and chapter have to look at the situation closely.

Man is asked to step down/comply with whatever it was the chapter asked.

Man thinks he can bluster and obfuscate and avoid the issue.

He can’t.

The dean and chapter have to end up taking firm action, which avoids naming and shaming him.

Man still thinks he can bluster his own way by the weight of public opinion.

He can’t.

Chapter are forced to reveal more than they wanted to or intended to.

Man is now named to the whole word as being the subject of 2 separate safeguarding complaints over a timescale of 15 years.

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Bishops Finger
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The D & C would probably have been happy to pay £7000 to Taylor's, if only to get the bloody ringers off their backs....

£700 seems reasonable, and quite what Potter being a director of Taylor's has to do with it, I don't know. There aren't that many professional bell companies in the country, anyway.

Ian J.

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The future is another country - they might do things differently there...

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Marvin the Martian

Interplanetary
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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
Possibly worth quoting a section of the statement from the Minster:

quote:
“Even after an investig­ation has taken place, and even if there is no prosecution achieved as an outcome of those investigations, if the authority, which in our case is the Chapter of York, cannot feel confident about an individual and their activity, and the way that they conduct themselves . . . if the organisation still feels there is a real or perceived risk, it can take a decision to exclude a person from a particular area of activity. That is what the Chapter did in relation to a member of the bell-ringing team.

”There has to be a process in which the church authorities have to look at the papers after any legal process has finished, and make a judgement as to whether or not they feel that the person, doing this particular activity, should be allowed to continue. In some circumstances, conditions are allowed, such as ensuring they are not on their own with people of a certain age-group. Chapter discussed the whole case with other agencies, and decided to exclude this person from the bell tower, but not the rest of church.”


Or to put it another way, even if someone is completely exonerated they can still be punished by banning them from doing what they love.

I mean, look at that wording: "if the organisation still feels there is a ... perceived risk". They might as well say "if we don't like him" or "if he don't look right to us".

This just confirms what I've been saying all along - it doesn't matter whether you're guilty or innocent, an accusation will be treated as a conviction anyway. I can't believe nobody else sees that as a bad thing.

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Hail Gallaxhar

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ThunderBunk

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Marvin I entirely agree with you. It's an appalling way for a Christian community and simply enables a witch hunt.

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Currently mostly furious, and occasionally foolish. Normal service may resume eventually. Or it may not. And remember children, "feiern ist wichtig".

Foolish, potentially deranged witterings

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Zacchaeus
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Two similar accusations years apart, by separate people, raise a lot of red flags

The police's burden of proof is very high, and he was allowed back to work etc after the first accusation had no action taken against him (he had been suspended from teaching).

But for it to happen twice then the necessity of protecting other people has to be considered, or the chapter is at fault.

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BroJames
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
Or to put it another way, even if someone is completely exonerated they can still be punished by banning them from doing what they love.

I mean, look at that wording: "if the organisation still feels there is a ... perceived risk". They might as well say "if we don't like him" or "if he don't look right to us".

This just confirms what I've been saying all along - it doesn't matter whether you're guilty or innocent, an accusation will be treated as a conviction anyway. I can't believe nobody else sees that as a bad thing.

But your paraphrase is inaccurate as regards the present case. In 1999/2000 a prosecution did not occur which means either the available evidence was insufficient to make it reasonably likely that the offence could be proved beyond reasonable doubt, or it was otherwise felt to be not in the public interest to mount a prosecution (e.g. vulnerability of witnesses, age of those required to give evidence etc.). That is not complete exoneration.

In 2015
quote:
[a sexual risk] order was initially granted by York Magistrates’ Court on an interim basis, pending final deter­mination, but ultimately the court refused to grant a sexual risk order, but other safeguarding measures were put in place by other author­ities.
Again that is not complete exoneration. The Sexual Risk Order may have been not granted either because it was not proved beyond reasonable doubt that behaviour had occurred which would merit an order, or because it was not proved on the balance of probabilities that an order was required to give protection (i.e. other safeguarding measures short of a court order would be sufficient). These other measures might include, for example,
quote:
a safeguarding notification [from the diocese to all incumbents that X] should not be permitted access to bell towers of churches in the diocese to ring or for any other purpose.
Again, if that was the advice the diocese was giving to parish clergy, how could the dean and chapter reasonably take a different line about the minster?
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Marvin the Martian

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quote:
Originally posted by Zacchaeus:
Two similar accusations years apart, by separate people, raise a lot of red flags

Quite aside from the obvious problem with such a position (namely, that it just raises the bar from one false accusation to two), the second investigation was described thusly:

quote:
None the less, this week North Yorkshire Police said in a statement that in June 2015 “it had applied for a Sexual Risk Order (SRO) following concerns raised during multi-agency safeguarding processes about a 66-year-old York man and his contact with children.
That doesn't sound like a fresh accusation to me, it sounds more like someone finding his name in an old database held by some other agency and starting the whole investigation again. With, I note, the same result. Except now we've gone so far over to the side of paranoia that even without any actual evidence of wrongdoing the authorities still think it's right and proper to punish him anyway.

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BroJames
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
That doesn't sound like a fresh accusation to me, it sounds more like someone finding his name in an old database held by some other agency and starting the whole investigation again. With, I note, the same result.

YMMV, but I find it hard to credit that this would have been done in relation to a one-off event sixteen years previously. ISTM that it is much more likely that there was fresh cause for concern.
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Bishops Finger
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Surely one of the benefits of a 'witch hunt' is that it weeds out witches from the rest of the population?

In any case, Potter has only himself to blame. If the result of his actions means that he is now unable to pursue his beloved bell ringing, that's tough shit, but we all have to bear the consequences of our sins.

I sympathise with those ringers who knew nowt of what was going on (perhaps those outside Potter's 'extended family'?). At least they may be able to recommence ringing at the Minster in due course, or perhaps n the meantime avail themselves of other towers.

Ian J.

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Spike

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quote:
Originally posted by BroJames:
The Church Times has now produced the fullest report I've seen on this affair.

And this from The Guardian

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Marvin the Martian

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quote:
Originally posted by BroJames:
In 1999/2000 a prosecution did not occur which means either the available evidence was insufficient to make it reasonably likely that the offence could be proved beyond reasonable doubt, or it was otherwise felt to be not in the public interest to mount a prosecution (e.g. vulnerability of witnesses, age of those required to give evidence etc.). That is not complete exoneration.

There's another reason why a prosecution may not occur after an investigation - if the investigation finds no evidence of wrongdoing.

quote:
The Sexual Risk Order may have been not granted either because it was not proved beyond reasonable doubt that behaviour had occurred which would merit an order, or because it was not proved on the balance of probabilities that an order was required to give protection (i.e. other safeguarding measures short of a court order would be sufficient).
Or because nothing actually happened. You keep ignoring that possibility.

quote:
These other measures might include, for example,
quote:
a safeguarding notification [from the diocese to all incumbents that X] should not be permitted access to bell towers of churches in the diocese to ring or for any other purpose.
Again, if that was the advice the diocese was giving to parish clergy, how could the dean and chapter reasonably take a different line about the minster?
According to your profile you're an Anglican minister. Ask yourself how you would feel if you were wrongly accused of molestation and as a result the Church authorities decided to ban you from ministering, even though the investigation never resulted in a prosecution.

Seriously. Really think about it. Imagine yourself in that position for just one minute, then come back and tell me if you still think the current ways of dealing with this sort of thing are fair.

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Zacchaeus
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quote:
Originally posted by BroJames:
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
That doesn't sound like a fresh accusation to me, it sounds more like someone finding his name in an old database held by some other agency and starting the whole investigation again. With, I note, the same result.

YMMV, but I find it hard to credit that this would have been done in relation to a one-off event sixteen years previously. ISTM that it is much more likely that there was fresh cause for concern.
The archbishop of York in his statement said there were two allegations one in the past and one recent

I have absolutely no sympathy with Mr Potter - if he had complied with the rules and waited for the investigation to end, it would have meant that if the ruling is, that the accusation is unfounded, then he could have quietly gone back to the bells with the world none the wiser.

The Minster tried to play it down and keep confidentiality, but now because he has gone public he has laid himself open to the press and public scrutiny. And to having his name bandied about, just because he thought he could bully his own way buy the weight of uninformed opinion

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Marvin the Martian

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quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
Surely one of the benefits of a 'witch hunt' is that it weeds out witches from the rest of the population?

You can't be being serious. Can you?

quote:
In any case, Potter has only himself to blame. If the result of his actions means that he is now unable to pursue his beloved bell ringing, that's tough shit, but we all have to bear the consequences of our sins.
Which actions/sins would those be? How do you know the accusation had any merit? Do you even care?

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Hail Gallaxhar

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Zacchaeus
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][/QUOTE]According to your profile you're an Anglican minister. Ask yourself how you would feel if you were wrongly accused of molestation and as a result the Church authorities decided to ban you from ministering, even though the investigation never resulted in a prosecution.

Seriously. Really think about it. Imagine yourself in that position for just one minute, then come back and tell me if you still think the current ways of dealing with this sort of thing are fair. [/QB][/QUOTE]


He also needs to consider as an Anglican minister, that should he use as a volunteer somebody who had two previous accusation for indecent behaviour made against them. And then there was then an issue with that person in his church, then he would be the one accountable and he would be the one hung out to dry by his diocese, the press, his congregation.

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BroJames
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I agree that it is possible that the person was concerned was wholly innocent. You don't seem able to accept that the authorities may in fact have acted quite reasonably. I've not made your argument in my posts because it has been amply made by you.

If it were only the Dean and Chapter, I might be more inclined to allow that you are right. The diocese, however, is a separate agency, and unlikely to be influenced by any alleged managerial grab for power within the cathedral. AFAICT its advice to incumbents about X not being allowed into bell towers still stands. More than that, this was a
quote:
complex multi-agency activity involving City of York Council, the York Diocese Safeguarding Adviser, and the Church of England’s National Safeguarding Officer
Nobody has lightly tried to trash anyone's reputation, and the way in which ringing at the cathedral was suspended suggests (to me at least) that there was an effort on the part of the cathedral to keep the safeguarding concerns confidential within a very small group of people, possibly not including all the bell ringers. Their action was cloaked under the general heading of management issues and health and safety.

I am both a parent and someone who works with children, and believe me I am alert to the circumstances in which allegations might arise, and what kind of behaviour is and is not appropriate. I have imagined what it might be like to be an innocent accused.

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Baptist Trainfan
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
According to your profile you're an Anglican minister. Ask yourself how you would feel if you were wrongly accused of molestation and as a result the Church authorities decided to ban you from ministering, even though the investigation never resulted in a prosecution.

But that is exactly what does (or, at least, can) happen for some people, such as teachers. And they may not even be told what the allegation is against them or who has made it, merely that it has happened.

And let's not use the word "ban" but "suspend". A teacher might well be removed from the school while the investigation wends its weary way. And the Minster made it very clear that many of the bell-ringers would be welcome to return.

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Marvin the Martian

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quote:
Originally posted by Zacchaeus:
I have absolutely no sympathy with Mr Potter - if he had complied with the rules and waited for the investigation to end, it would have meant that if the ruling is, that the accusation is unfounded, then he could have quietly gone back to the bells with the world none the wiser.

The investigation had ended, and he was apparently still banned.

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Zacchaeus
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quote:
Originally posted by Baptist Trainfan:
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
According to your profile you're an Anglican minister. Ask yourself how you would feel if you were wrongly accused of molestation and as a result the Church authorities decided to ban you from ministering, even though the investigation never resulted in a prosecution.

But that is exactly what does (or, at least, can) happen for some people, such as teachers. And they may not even be told what the allegation is against them or who has made it, merely that it has happened.

And let's not use the word "ban" but "suspend". A teacher might well be removed from the school while the investigation wends its weary way. And the Minster made it very clear that many of the bell-ringers would be welcome to return.

In fact the gentleman in this case was suspended from teaching in school during the last accusation and then reinstated after the investigation.
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Marvin the Martian

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quote:
Originally posted by Zacchaeus:
He also needs to consider as an Anglican minister, that should he use as a volunteer somebody who had two previous accusation for indecent behaviour made against them.

Yes. Just as someone who has been accused of fraud (but never even charged, much less found guilty) should still be perfectly free to become church treasurer should they so desire.

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Hail Gallaxhar

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Zacchaeus
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
quote:
Originally posted by Zacchaeus:
I have absolutely no sympathy with Mr Potter - if he had complied with the rules and waited for the investigation to end, it would have meant that if the ruling is, that the accusation is unfounded, then he could have quietly gone back to the bells with the world none the wiser.

The investigation had ended, and he was apparently still banned.
The police investigation might be over - the publicity hasn’t been clear about whether the other multi agency investigation is complete, or whether the ban, is the result of that investigation

But either way the only reason it is out there for us all to see is because of Mr Potter’s own publicity maybe with the collusion of other member of the bell ringing team..

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Marvin the Martian

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quote:
Originally posted by BroJames:
I agree that it is possible that the person was concerned was wholly innocent. You don't seem able to accept that the authorities may in fact have acted quite reasonably.

If there was no evidence of wrongdoing then acting as if there was is unreasonable. And if there had been any evidence then there would have been a prosecution.

quote:
If it were only the Dean and Chapter, I might be more inclined to allow that you are right. The diocese, however, is a separate agency, and unlikely to be influenced by any alleged managerial grab for power within the cathedral.
The diocese is going to be basing its advice on what the Dean and Chapter have told it. Likewise for the national safeguarding advisor.

quote:
I have imagined what it might be like to be an innocent accused.
So do you think it's fair that your life could be ruined by such a situation, or not?

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Marvin the Martian

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quote:
Originally posted by Zacchaeus:
In fact the gentleman in this case was suspended from teaching in school during the last accusation and then reinstated after the investigation.

Which is even more evidence that the Minster is wrong in this case. If he's still OK to teach, surely he's still OK to ring a few bells. [Roll Eyes]

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mr cheesy
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
Yes. Just as someone who has been accused of fraud (but never even charged, much less found guilty) should still be perfectly free to become church treasurer should they so desire.

Just so we're absolutely clear on this: if a camp leader has been taking photos of small boys in the bath but there is insufficient evidence to take it further forward to prosecution, you'd be absolutely fine with sending your child to that camp with the same leader?

The fact that the thing didn't go to court is not evidence that the thing didn't happen. I'd suggest that in a circumstance where something is known to have happened but that thing in-and-of-itself was not sufficient for a prosecution, then you'd still be wise to consider moving that person out of that role.

If money goes missing when someone is a church treasurer, it might be impossible to prove that they're a thief. But there might also be no other option than to believe that they're at very least extremely careless.

I think in that circumstance and even without a prosecution you'd want to be pretty bloody careful before letting them alone with the church money again.

[ 20. October 2016, 15:19: Message edited by: mr cheesy ]

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Zacchaeus
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
quote:
Originally posted by Zacchaeus:
In fact the gentleman in this case was suspended from teaching in school during the last accusation and then reinstated after the investigation.

Which is even more evidence that the Minster is wrong in this case. If he's still OK to teach, surely he's still OK to ring a few bells. [Roll Eyes]
He is not teaching now, he was teaching at the time of the 1999 accusation.
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mr cheesy
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This can't be a rare occurrence because I know someone who it has happened to. Nobody disputed that the thing had happened, but police and prosecutors did not take it forward because they were unable to prove that the person was more than bloody stupid.

But the person could not continue in the caring profession, prosecution or no.

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my new book: Biblical But Bollocks. Available in all good bookshops.

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