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Source: (consider it) Thread: Bunch of bell ends
Zacchaeus
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
[QUOTE]Originally posted by BroJames:
[qb] 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.

Not having enough evidence to secure a prosecution, is not necessarily the same as there being no evidence at all.

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
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.

And I can't quite believe you see that there are only two possible outcomes: a criminal conviction or completely innocent.

There are a million shades of grey between the two, and I'm absolutely certain you're applying your own judgement with regards to who has unfettered access to your own kith and kin in a nuanced manner. Because you're not that naive.

Cases where there's a shedload of evidence but no prospect of conviction pass across prosecutors' desks every single day. Just think of all the people who aren't convicted of domestic abuse when it's as plain as a pikestaff they're domestic abusers. Would you be happy when your child brought them home and introduced them to you as their new partner? "Oh, but they're innocent!" you'd opine.

Not.

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Improbable Botany

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Marvin the Martian

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I'm just trying to judge other people the same way I would like to be judged.

How ridiculous of me. Who would ever think that was a good way to approach things?

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Hail Gallaxhar

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Zacchaeus
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
I'm just trying to judge other people the same way I would like to be judged.

How ridiculous of me. Who would ever think that was a good way to approach things?

On the other had i want to be certain the week and vulnerable are protected, silly me..
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Bishops Finger
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And you a minister of the church, too! God forbid that the church should (in conjunction with other agencies, be it noted) show concern and take action..... [Disappointed]

Sometimes, our past comes back and bites us on the bum. This may or may not be 'fair', but it happens - and, in this case, the person with the bitten arse is not the only person involved.

Those deemed to be at risk MUST receive consideration and protection.

IJ

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Marvin the Martian

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quote:
Originally posted by Zacchaeus:
On the other had i want to be certain the week and vulnerable are protected, silly me..

The only way to be certain is to never let anybody go near them at all. Beyond that, you're just deciding what is an acceptable level of risk in light of the need to treat everybody as fairly as possible.

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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:
On the other had i want to be certain the week and vulnerable are protected, silly me..

The only way to be certain is to never let anybody go near them at all. Beyond that, you're just deciding what is an acceptable level of risk in light of the need to treat everybody as fairly as possible.
The bible tells us often to take special care of widows, aliens and orphans ie, the most vulnerable members of society.
We need to have pay special attention for those least able to look after themselves, the most vulnerable. And sorry but 2 similar but separate accusations, from different people, 15 years apart is either dammed unlucky or downright suspicious.

Mr Potter is a grown up and his own behaviour has led to this brouhaha, he was the one who brought it to our attention not the minster. We may or may not get to hear any more details because of confidentiality but his spell in the public eye is his own work

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Ricardus
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quote:
Originally posted by anne:
£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!

I agree there's Reasons for it. The [Ultra confused] [Ultra confused] [Ultra confused] was provoked by the contrast against the £25 fee, which is considered high, which I would get for ringing for a wedding, which takes two hours out of a Saturday afternoon and may indeed include getting the bells down afterwards ...

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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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BroJames
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
And if there had been any evidence then there would have been a prosecution.<snip>

The diocese is going to be basing its advice on what the Dean and Chapter have told it. Likewise for the national safeguarding advisor.

The first statement is not true. There may have been evidence, just not sufficient evidence to convince a jury beyond reasonable doubt that an offence had been committed. That may have been (for example) because it was simply a case of one person's word against another, or because the witness was a victim who felt (or was felt to be) unable to go through the court process. Or there may have been reasons why a prosecution was deemed not to be in the public interest. Again this sometimes happens where there is a risk of further harm to the victim.

I would be interested to know whether X was reinstated to teaching in 2000 after the decision not to prosecute. I may have missed it, but I don't recall seeing that he was, and the school's statement at the time struck me as quite reserved
quote:
Cathy Wordie, chairwoman of governors at Upper Poppleton school, said: "The staff and governors are delighted for Mr Potter that no charges are to be brought."
<snip>
The City of York Council said today: "We will be meeting with the Family Protection Unit of North Yorkshire police for a full briefing tomorrow.

The second statement of yours which I have quoted might be true, but I doubt it. It is much more likely that the Dean and Chapter and the Diocese listened to what the Council and the Police had to say, and that the safeguarding advisers were also in touch with them directly.

[ 20. October 2016, 16:42: Message edited by: BroJames ]

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Leorning Cniht
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:

Just think of all the people who aren't convicted of domestic abuse when it's as plain as a pikestaff they're domestic abusers. Would you be happy when your child brought them home and introduced them to you as their new partner? "Oh, but they're innocent!" you'd opine.

Or consider the case when your gut feelings are telling you that the person is innocent of any wrongdoing. Suppose you have a person who has been the subject of more than one, independent, accusation of impropriety, and you think he means no harm.

Fine - however, the odds are that he has some behaviours that tend to be misinterpreted as abusive, and so the odds are also that it is likely to happen again. Someone else is also likely to think that he is being inappropriate.

That's a bad thing. Even if he has no bad intent, you need to avoid that, both for the sake of future people who think they are being victimized, and for his own sake to avoid future accusations.

Marvin asks us to consider how Mr. Innocent-and-Misunderstood would feel to have his hobby - his life - removed from him at the stroke of a pen with no proof of wrongdoing. That's a fair question.

We are not given the details of the cases in question. But suppose a man has had accusations made against him. As I understand it, teaching bellringing frequently involves standing in close physical contact with your pupil whilst alone in the bell tower. There's plenty of opportunity for misbehaviour or misunderstanding there.

Depending on the nature of the allegations, it might be reasonable to tell a man in this situation that he may continue to ring, but may not teach, and may not have access to a tower key. And if a man in such a situation was willing to engage and cooperate with sensible safeguards, then perhaps there's a way to keep him ringing.

If, on the other hand, a man in such a situation were to protest that he has done nothing wrong, has been cleared of all charges, that his actions are a normal part of teaching bellringing and he intends to carry on as he has in the past, then you can be pretty certain that there will be further allegations.

And you can't have that.

[ 20. October 2016, 16:42: Message edited by: Leorning Cniht ]

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Chamois
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The thing that concerns me most about this affair is the statement by the Archbishop that some of the bell-ringers "consistently challenged the Chapter’s authority". In the Church Times article the ringer who organised the petition is quoted as saying: "“The reason for our sackings is that we questioned the way they have treated someone after the closure of the incident. They excluded someone, and we wrote letters saying: ‘How come you have excluded someone if you have no issues against them?’”

So, apparently, writing a letter asking for clarification of a process (which must have had a big impact on the bell ringing team - you can't expect them simply not to notice that one of their long-term members has been excluded) is "challenging the Chapter's authority". No no no no no. That sucks. Big time.

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The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases

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TomM
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quote:
Originally posted by Chamois:
The thing that concerns me most about this affair is the statement by the Archbishop that some of the bell-ringers "consistently challenged the Chapter’s authority". In the Church Times article the ringer who organised the petition is quoted as saying: "“The reason for our sackings is that we questioned the way they have treated someone after the closure of the incident. They excluded someone, and we wrote letters saying: ‘How come you have excluded someone if you have no issues against them?’”

So, apparently, writing a letter asking for clarification of a process (which must have had a big impact on the bell ringing team - you can't expect them simply not to notice that one of their long-term members has been excluded) is "challenging the Chapter's authority". No no no no no. That sucks. Big time.

That assumes the ringer quoted in the Church Times tells (or indeed, knows) the whole truth.
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Chamois
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Originally posted by TomM:

quote:
That assumes the ringer quoted in the Church Times tells (or indeed, knows) the whole truth.
Her account is at least consistent with what the Archbishop said in the interview shown on YouTube. She says they wrote letters asking why X had been excluded. The Archbishop said that some of the ringers consistently challenged the Dean and Chapter's "right to make that decision"
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Zacchaeus
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quote:
Originally posted by TomM:
quote:
Originally posted by Chamois:
The thing that concerns me most about this affair is the statement by the Archbishop that some of the bell-ringers "consistently challenged the Chapter’s authority". In the Church Times article the ringer who organised the petition is quoted as saying: "“The reason for our sackings is that we questioned the way they have treated someone after the closure of the incident. They excluded someone, and we wrote letters saying: ‘How come you have excluded someone if you have no issues against them?’”

So, apparently, writing a letter asking for clarification of a process (which must have had a big impact on the bell ringing team - you can't expect them simply not to notice that one of their long-term members has been excluded) is "challenging the Chapter's authority". No no no no no. That sucks. Big time.

That assumes the ringer quoted in the Church Times tells (or indeed, knows) the whole truth.
And of course it depends on exactly what the letters said.

And on anything else that went on that she doesn't know about

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Lamb Chopped
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quote:
Originally posted by Chamois:
The thing that concerns me most about this affair is the statement by the Archbishop that some of the bell-ringers "consistently challenged the Chapter’s authority". In the Church Times article the ringer who organised the petition is quoted as saying: "“The reason for our sackings is that we questioned the way they have treated someone after the closure of the incident. They excluded someone, and we wrote letters saying: ‘How come you have excluded someone if you have no issues against them?’”

So, apparently, writing a letter asking for clarification of a process (which must have had a big impact on the bell ringing team - you can't expect them simply not to notice that one of their long-term members has been excluded) is "challenging the Chapter's authority". No no no no no. That sucks. Big time.

You know, that sentiment ("How come you have excluded someone if you have no issues against them?") can be expressed in very different ways--you can have an ordinary polite enquiry, or you can go way over the top and get all accusatory and we're-probably-not-gonna-cooperate (like Trump with the results of the election right now). And the reaction of the authorities addressed could be very different depending on how they took the tone of the letter.

Again, with the letter and bunches of other evidence, we really can't be sure of anything. Best to be charitable to everybody.

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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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Lincoln Imp
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quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:
As I understand it, teaching bellringing frequently involves standing in close physical contact with your pupil whilst alone in the bell tower. There's plenty of opportunity for misbehaviour or misunderstanding there.

You understand wrong. There is no reason whatsoever to be alone in the bell tower (belfry/ ringing chamber, or bell chamber) with a pupil or any other person in the course of normal ringing & instruction, nor is there close physical contact other than what you would have queuing up for communion. You don't have individual private tuition in a tower with no-one else around. If someone suggests it, yes, pull the plug or give them a chaperone. Change-ringing is by definition a group activity.

We had this discussion when we were issued with guidelines (by our Diocese, not by the national governing body of the church bell ringers nor our regional umbrella organisation) that bellringing had been classified as a "regulated activity". It isn't according to the people who issued our DBS clearances. We complied nonetheless at cost. It was a clear case of guidelines being issued by people who did not even take the time to investigate the activity they classify as "regulated".

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There lives more faith in honest doubt, believe me, than in half the creeds. (Tennyson)

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ThunderBunk

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I still detect an outbreak of managerialism which has no place in a Christian community.

Leadership, compassion and forgiveness are required. Not passive-aggressive managerialism which, to my ear at least, lies behind both the statements from the Dean and Chapter and the response from the bellringers.

This is not to say that abuse should happen, or that reasonable measures should not be taken to prevent it. But there are degrees, and not everything has to be overly floodlit in this perverse kind of a way.

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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 BroJames:
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
And if there had been any evidence then there would have been a prosecution.<snip>

The diocese is going to be basing its advice on what the Dean and Chapter have told it. Likewise for the national safeguarding advisor.

The first statement is not true. There may have been evidence, just not sufficient evidence to convince a jury beyond reasonable doubt that an offence had been committed. That may have been (for example) because it was simply a case of one person's word against another, or because the witness was a victim who felt (or was felt to be) unable to go through the court process. Or there may have been reasons why a prosecution was deemed not to be in the public interest. Again this sometimes happens where there is a risk of further harm to the victim.

I would be interested to know whether X was reinstated to teaching in 2000 after the decision not to prosecute. I may have missed it, but I don't recall seeing that he was, and the school's statement at the time struck me as quite reserved
quote:
Cathy Wordie, chairwoman of governors at Upper Poppleton school, said: "The staff and governors are delighted for Mr Potter that no charges are to be brought."
<snip>
The City of York Council said today: "We will be meeting with the Family Protection Unit of North Yorkshire police for a full briefing tomorrow.

The second statement of yours which I have quoted might be true, but I doubt it. It is much more likely that the Dean and Chapter and the Diocese listened to what the Council and the Police had to say, and that the safeguarding advisers were also in touch with them directly.

I'd thought i'd read he'd been reinstated but I can't find it anywhere now - so maybe I dreamed it.

One of the news articles describes him as a former teacher - but he's 66 so he would be retired anyway

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Teekeey Misha
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quote:
Originally posted by Chamois:
So, apparently, writing a letter asking for clarification of a process ... is "challenging the Chapter's authority". No no no no no. That sucks. Big time.

Surely the reality is that they didn't just write "a letter asking for clarification"; they actively undermined the D&C's safeguarding efforts by, for example, including as their Tower Captain in a forthcoming competition the very person whom they knew the D&C had banned from the ringing team.

(It's reminiscent of the teenager who admits only to doing something innocent and harmless when you and they both know full well they were actually doing something neither innocent nor harmless.)

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Misha
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Leorning Cniht
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Here is an entirely different bellringer case. This looks really quite similar to Lamb Chopped's example - an adult who was not accused of anything criminal, but who was quite clearly behaving inappropriately with young people.

He was, quite rightly, removed.

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mr cheesy
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Right exactly. When you are in your 30s, sharing a tent on a camping trip and then bombarding a 15 year old girl with inappropriate sexual banter might not be illegal, but it is certainly inappropriate.

Someone who has no concept of social or sexual boundaries and who refuses to conform to the safeguarding instructions from the organisation with whom they're volunteering shouldn't be around children, even if what they're doing isn't criminal.

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Curiosity killed ...

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I know of a case where the local safeguarding officer asked if an agreement and controls could be put in place to allow a bellringer who had a past history of inappropriate behaviour to ring. That one was agreed, because the person concerned was prepared to sign and follow an agreed contract.

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ExclamationMark
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quote:
Originally posted by ThunderBunk:
I still detect an outbreak of managerialism which has no place in a Christian community.

Leadership, compassion and forgiveness are required. Not passive-aggressive managerialism which, to my ear at least, lies behind both the statements from the Dean and Chapter and the response from the bellringers.

This is not to say that abuse should happen, or that reasonable measures should not be taken to prevent it. But there are degrees, and not everything has to be overly floodlit in this perverse kind of a way.

The ringers publicised it. Arguably the Cathedral was taking leadership seriously by addressing concerns.

With Safeguarding, the law recognises no degrees: if a concern is raised and/or you become aware of one you are required to take it further. Whether that results in prosecution or acquittal it is traumatic for all involved - and yes, false accusations do happen. The professionals are used to dealing with such situations - let them do it.

Suspension (on full pay if you're not a volunteer) is pretty standard. It means that the people involved don't see/contact each other and allows for investigations to proceed unhindered.

Best not to get oneself into any position or circumstances where there is even the remote possibility of false accusation being made - ie never, ever be alone with a vulnerable person unless absolutely necessary or an emergency.

In this case, the concerns are high given the 3 accusations levelled against one person. Either he's very unlucky and/or being targeted or there are serious concerns about his behaviour. The stakes are so high as we have all seen such that no ne but no one takes these steps lightly. The involvement of other agencies suggests broader decision across a range of skilled practitioners. Nothing I've read or hard suggests that the D & C were wrong to involve such groups - hence the seriousness of the issue.

For those who think it's heavy handed - well it is. The alternative is to continue the age old practice of overlooking abnormal behaviour and screwing young lives up in the process. That's how it was until relatively recently and that approach didn't work .... too many people were excused too much ... "after all, it's just dear old Jimmy isn't it?"

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iamchristianhearmeroar
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quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:
Here is an entirely different bellringer case. This looks really quite similar to Lamb Chopped's example - an adult who was not accused of anything criminal, but who was quite clearly behaving inappropriately with young people.

He was, quite rightly, removed.

It sounds as if the ringer in that situation was lucky not to have been charged with criminal behaviour. Some of what he did sounds very close to grooming. But the law concerning online grooming in the UK was changed only very recently, which may have been too recent to catch this.

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Tubbs

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quote:
Originally posted by ExclamationMark:
quote:
Originally posted by ThunderBunk:
I still detect an outbreak of managerialism which has no place in a Christian community.

Leadership, compassion and forgiveness are required. Not passive-aggressive managerialism which, to my ear at least, lies behind both the statements from the Dean and Chapter and the response from the bellringers.

This is not to say that abuse should happen, or that reasonable measures should not be taken to prevent it. But there are degrees, and not everything has to be overly floodlit in this perverse kind of a way.

The ringers publicised it. Arguably the Cathedral was taking leadership seriously by addressing concerns.

With Safeguarding, the law recognises no degrees: if a concern is raised and/or you become aware of one you are required to take it further. Whether that results in prosecution or acquittal it is traumatic for all involved - and yes, false accusations do happen. The professionals are used to dealing with such situations - let them do it.

Suspension (on full pay if you're not a volunteer) is pretty standard. It means that the people involved don't see/contact each other and allows for investigations to proceed unhindered.

Best not to get oneself into any position or circumstances where there is even the remote possibility of false accusation being made - ie never, ever be alone with a vulnerable person unless absolutely necessary or an emergency.

In this case, the concerns are high given the 3 accusations levelled against one person. Either he's very unlucky and/or being targeted or there are serious concerns about his behaviour. The stakes are so high as we have all seen such that no ne but no one takes these steps lightly. The involvement of other agencies suggests broader decision across a range of skilled practitioners. Nothing I've read or hard suggests that the D & C were wrong to involve such groups - hence the seriousness of the issue.

For those who think it's heavy handed - well it is. The alternative is to continue the age old practice of overlooking abnormal behaviour and screwing young lives up in the process. That's how it was until relatively recently and that approach didn't work .... too many people were excused too much ... "after all, it's just dear old Jimmy isn't it?"

The other thing to bear in mind is that safeguarding isn’t just about children, it also covers vulnerable adults. That was one of the reasons why I was surprised one of the articles stated that the bell ringers weren’t subject to checks.

Reading between the lines, it sounds like the church decided that it’s better that anyone who is in a serves at church gets checked. One of the articles said they’d already looked at the alter guilds etc and were going through the same process with others. It may sound like a sledgehammer to crack a nut but given past failures, that’s not entirely surprising.

That sounds slightly separate to the other issue. As EM points out, it sounds like the church leadership tried to deal with things directly with the individual involved quietly. Either by telling them they had to stand down OR continue subject to certain conditions.

The individual went to the wider group who took their part. And the group went to the press and started a petition. So the church responded. Ho hum!

Whether or not the wider group knew exactly what the issue is open to question. Possibly not.

But even if they did, never underestimate people’s ability to explain stuff away. People we know don’t do bad things.

Tubbs

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"It's better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool than open it up and remove all doubt" - Dennis Thatcher. My blog. Decide for yourself which I am

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Leorning Cniht
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quote:
Originally posted by Tubbs:
That was one of the reasons why I was surprised one of the articles stated that the bell ringers weren’t subject to checks.

At some point I found the rules for a different diocese, which said that the tower captain, assistant, and anyone who tutored ringers required a DBS check, but regular ringers did not. It was OK for an unchecked ringer to step in as a leader / tutor / whatever on precisely one occasion without being checked.
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Callan
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Originally posted by Tubbs:

quote:
But even if they did, never underestimate people’s ability to explain stuff away. People we know don’t do bad things.
Oh, God, yes.

A clergy colleague of mine was accused, charged and convicted of a number of offences of this sort. At first it was kept confidential and he was "off sick" when the investigation was carrying on. When he was charged a petition was set up which consisted partly of people saying "I can't believe this of the man who conducted my daughter's wedding would have done such things" and partly "I hope the people who made these accusations purely for monetary gain and publicity (their identity is quite properly not in the public domain), are exposed to the fullest rigours of the law". I knew some of the signatories quite well and they were, basically, sane, decent and intelligent people, who clearly did not want to consider the possibility that someone that they had otherwise good grounds to like and respect may have had a darker side. Since the conviction some of them have realised that they were mistaken. Others will go to their grave convinced that a serious miscarriage of justice have taken place. Because, obviously, the people who reported the abuse were clearly doing it for the Lols, and the police, the judge and the jury were all in the business of fitting up an innocent clergyman because, um, reasons. I suspect a similar dynamic is at place here.

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How easy it would be to live in England, if only one did not love her. - G.K. Chesterton

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Golden Key
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Callan--

The petition signers sound like many of Trump's followers. And like Trump, himself.

(Not hijacking the thread. Just see a parallel.)

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Callan
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Yes, inasmuch as people are in denial as to what was going on.

But in a case of this sort, if I was the accused I'd hope that at least some of my friends and family would have as their immediate response: "I can't believe that of Callan!" If you have known someone for years and have good cause to like and respect them it is hard to accept, the possibility that they have a darker side and harder to accept that, even if innocent, accusations of this sort have to be investigated.

We invest in our friends and family and it is hard for us if they do something wrong, or if they are accused of doing something wrong. That's kind of the point. What I find odd is the way that people have clearly invested in Donald Trump. Melania and the kids, sure. But why does a grown adult who has never met a politician and who would otherwise be sceptical about the motives and ability of politicians suddenly decide that The Donald is the solution to everything that is wrong in their lives?

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How easy it would be to live in England, if only one did not love her. - G.K. Chesterton

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Golden Key
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I think a large chunk of it is that he's been in the limelight for so long ("The Apprentice", and coverage of his wealth and projects) that they feel they know him.

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Blessed Gator, pray for us!
--"Oh bat bladders, do you have to bring common sense into this?"--Dragon, "Jane & the Dragon"
--"I'm not giving up--and neither should you." --SNL

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Rev per Minute
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quote:
Originally posted by Lincoln Imp:
You understand wrong. There is no reason whatsoever to be alone in the bell tower (belfry/ ringing chamber, or bell chamber) with a pupil or any other person in the course of normal ringing & instruction, nor is there close physical contact other than what you would have queuing up for communion. You don't have individual private tuition in a tower with no-one else around. If someone suggests it, yes, pull the plug or give them a chaperone. Change-ringing is by definition a group activity.

Except that an experienced ringer will stand close behind a learner in the early stages of learning to ring, in order to show them how to hold the rope and in case they fail to catch the sally. Unless your church is particularly cramped, no queue for communion would be as close together. A ringer intent on getting closer than necessary might not be noticed if other ringers are concentrating on their own bells. And it is feasible that a small group of new ringers might be given separate lessons before they join the full band, although decent procedures would stop this being done by just one ringer.

While this situation is a complete mess in which neither side comes out well, the safeguarding agenda puts me mostly on the side of the Chapter.

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At the end of the day, we face our Maker alongside Jesus. RIP ken

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Mrs Shrew

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The ringers have now started a petition to have the Dean sacked, and are spreading it through our local newspaper.

I'm absolutely fuming that the paper is supporting this and not pointing out that we now know the circumstances of the issue, and that it was not her decision but a group decision.

It just seems so petty and vindictive, which makes me more minded to believe when the Minster say that the bell ringers were not cooperating with the safeguarding restrictions.

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"The goal of life is not to make other people in your own image, it is to understand that they, too, are in God's image" (Orfeo)
Was "mummyfrances".

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Doc Tor
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So, not a private fiefdom at all... [Roll Eyes]

It turns out that the bunch of bell ends were the ones at the end of the bells all along.

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Improbable Botany

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Bishops Finger
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What Mrs. Shrew said.

The ringers are ronger than the rongest thing ever made by the Rongmaking Factory in Rongtown.

Still, give them enough rope, and they'll hang themselves...

IJ

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

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Baptist Trainfan
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quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
Still, give them enough rope, and they'll hang themselves...

If that happens, it'll be a Health & Safety issue as well as a Safeguarding one!
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Bishops Finger
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I know, and serve 'em right! [Devil]

(Seriously, though, how stupid they are.)

IJ

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

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Bishops Finger
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Sorry to double-post, but the thought has occurred to me that the local paper, by reporting what the ringers are doing (but not necessarily thereby supporting them), are actually providing them with the (metaphorical) rope with which to hang themselves.

Given that the safeguarding issue has also been reported, how else can the petitioners for the Dean's removal now be regarded, other than in a bad light? No matter how much the ringers whinge and whine, ISTM that the Minster is well rid of them (well, the trouble-makers, at least).

IJ

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

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Tubbs

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quote:
Originally posted by Callan:
Originally posted by Tubbs:

quote:
But even if they did, never underestimate people’s ability to explain stuff away. People we know don’t do bad things.
Oh, God, yes.

A clergy colleague of mine was accused, charged and convicted of a number of offences of this sort. At first it was kept confidential and he was "off sick" when the investigation was carrying on. When he was charged a petition was set up which consisted partly of people saying "I can't believe this of the man who conducted my daughter's wedding would have done such things" and partly "I hope the people who made these accusations purely for monetary gain and publicity (their identity is quite properly not in the public domain), are exposed to the fullest rigours of the law". I knew some of the signatories quite well and they were, basically, sane, decent and intelligent people, who clearly did not want to consider the possibility that someone that they had otherwise good grounds to like and respect may have had a darker side. Since the conviction some of them have realised that they were mistaken. Others will go to their grave convinced that a serious miscarriage of justice have taken place. Because, obviously, the people who reported the abuse were clearly doing it for the Lols, and the police, the judge and the jury were all in the business of fitting up an innocent clergyman because, um, reasons. I suspect a similar dynamic is at place here.

Yes, I’ve seen this first hand as well.

They also rationalise what happened, “It wasn’t that bad because … Well, things and to take them away from a ministry they love / are brilliant at seems a bit harsh. They’re so nice …”. Or ”It’s just so and so and their little ways. They just need a sharp elbow in the ribs".

It also gets linked with Christian virtues like trust and forgiveness. “Of course we should trust people and they swore they understood it was a bad thing to do and promised never to do it again so we should forgive them like Christ forgive us … ”.

Rev T has had to introduce or revamp the safeguarding procedures at two of the churches we’ve been at.

There’s always an element of “Why do we need this stuff, it wasn’t necessary in the past …” and “People will think we don’t trust them.

Or, and my favourite, ”Isn’t this rather expensive? Couldn’t this money be spent on something more useful?” As in Christian life the "something useful" is usually outreach / mission, there is an irony.

Tubbs

[ 25. October 2016, 13:53: Message edited by: Tubbs ]

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"It's better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool than open it up and remove all doubt" - Dennis Thatcher. My blog. Decide for yourself which I am

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Zacchaeus
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Whatever went on, the only reason this is public knowledge is because of some of the bell ringers, who instead of working with the minster appear to have thought they could create a furore and use the weight of uniformed public opinion to force their own way.
The minster tried to keep it quiet and confidential, the bell ringers publicised it and now appear to have targeted the Dean personally in spite of it being made clear it was a chapter decision and the ABY was informed of what was happening

They seem have refused to do what the minster asked and have done things like including this man in their future events, despite at least some of them knowing the minster would not accept it. Which really does make them seem like a difficult and uncooperative group, who think they can do what they like and would not work with anything from the minster unless it was exactly what they wanted.

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Baptist Trainfan
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As you may know, this plot has now thickened with a fresh statement by the Chapter and reports in the BBC and elsewhere.

The Minster's statement would seem to back up Zacchaeus' comment above.

[ 16. December 2016, 15:22: Message edited by: Baptist Trainfan ]

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mr cheesy
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The furore seems to have been reignated by an eponymous and anonymous Anglican blogger/tweeter claiming that the dispute was over an insignificant issue, the Dean responding and a bunch of bellringers from Leeds refusing to go to York in solidarity with their "sacked" brethren.

Maybe it is about time that certain muckspreading gossipmongers shut up.

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

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Lyda*Rose

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Does anyone have an idea of what "The judge decided that no sanction would be imposed and the person concerned made certain undertakings" means?

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"Dear God, whose name I do not know - thank you for my life. I forgot how BIG... thank you. Thank you for my life." ~from Joe Vs the Volcano

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Chamois
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Well I'm not convinced.

The BBC website report says "No charges were brought against the individual and an application for a Sexual Risk Order was refused by magistrates in December 2015". In other words, there isn't much evidence that this person did commit the alleged indecent assault.

I think if this person were someone who was a member of the same church music group as myself, in these circumstances I would make a strong protest if the church said that person were to be excluded. This person hasn't been convicted of (or even charged with) an offence. There are concerns. OK. But to exclude them from a music group? I mean, it's not as though they were running a children's group. The Yorkshire Association of Change-ringers has a child protection policy in place on their website and I'd be astonished if the Minster ringers hadn't signed up to it. Exclusion seems totally disproportionate and also unjust to the individual who has got this matter hanging over him although there isn't any substantive evidence.

The ringers say they are upset because the Dean and Chapter refused to enter into any discussion, and then sacked the entire band. I wouldn't go on social media myself but then I don't use social media. Perhaps if you are a Facebook fan it's what you do.

I'm not surprised the Minster is having trouble replacing the ringers. They obviously had no conception of the time, talent and dedication you need to become a top-class 12-bell ringer. It's as though they had sacked the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and then expected to recruit a replacement orchestra of the same standard from unemployed musicians. With the added problem that there is a national shortage of bell-ringers of any standard and therefore there isn't an "unemployed" pool to draw on.

I think it's a great pity the Dean and Chapter acted in this way.

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The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by Chamois:
I'm not surprised the Minster is having trouble replacing the ringers.

Did you even read the Chapter's statement? The bit where they baldly state that those who newly volunteer are being intimidated and threatened?

If that's standard behaviour for bell ringers, then melt the peel down and have done with it. Perhaps they can be recast as swords.

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Improbable Botany

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Jolly Jape
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
quote:
Originally posted by Chamois:
I'm not surprised the Minster is having trouble replacing the ringers.

Did you even read the Chapter's statement? The bit where they baldly state that those who newly volunteer are being intimidated and threatened?

Well, like Mandy Rice-Davies said, they would say that, wouldn't they.

Honestly, what do you think the bell ringers should do, faced with the complete intransigence of the D&C, the refusal to even meet with them or discuss matters? There are only two options open to them, lie down and accept the diktat of the PTB (and implicitly accept the culpability of the ex-captain) or fight for the honour and reputation of their friend and colleague by the only means available to them and going public. You might think they were right, or you might think they were wrong, but it is hardly an unreasonable course of action, even if it is not the one you yourself would have chosen. As for the desire to keep things out of the public eye to protect the ex-captain's reputation, clearly, both he and his supporters felt confident enough in the rightness of their cause to take the hit in order to at least have the chance of fighting what they perceive to be a great injustice.

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To those who have never seen the flow and ebb of God's grace in their lives, it means nothing. To those who have seen it, even fleetingly, even only once - it is life itself. (Adeodatus)

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Bishops Finger
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Talk about being stuck between a rock and a hard place!

Just think what a brouhaha there would have been if the D & C had done nothing about the safeguarding issues, and had then been found wanting.

By the way, I hope those who say that they have been intimidated have duly informed the police.

IJ

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

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Jolly Jape
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So due judicial process is just so much bunk? If you are accused, you should be treated as if you are guilty? Call me old fashioned, but I'm rather attached to the idea of innocent unless proven guilty.

Of course, there are actions that could have been taken which might have resolved the situation in a win-win fashion, but that would have meant discussion between the ringers and the D&C, a course which they declined to take.

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To those who have never seen the flow and ebb of God's grace in their lives, it means nothing. To those who have seen it, even fleetingly, even only once - it is life itself. (Adeodatus)

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Gee D
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quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
Talk about being stuck between a rock and a hard place!

Just think what a brouhaha there would have been if the D & C had done nothing about the safeguarding issues, and had then been found wanting.

By the way, I hope those who say that they have been intimidated have duly informed the police.

IJ

Exactly. We've had a Royal Commission into child sexual abuse in institutions running here now for over 3 years. Case after case of abuse of children have come forward. A major thread is not that witnesses themselves abused children, but rather that no action was taken properly to investigate allegations. That so far has seen the resignation of ++Perth and +Grafton (both Anglican).

What has emerged now is that there are many in the Anglican Church - and probably others - who decry the loss of abusing clerics who have been popular. A Dean Newcastle had his orders revoked. Until then, he had been very well known in the city and its surrounding area, lifting the profile of the church, and becoming known as the most powerful person in the city after the Lord Mayor. A diocesan tribunal found that he had engaged in totally inappropriate behaviour involving under-age boys; members of that tribunal have been shunned by other office holders; the cathedral parish split in 2, and the present bishop - himself one who as a teenager had been abused - placed in an invidious position.

From all the reports linked above, the Dean and Chapter at York had no choice but to take the steps it did. Caesar's wife and all that.

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Not every Anglican in Sydney is Sydney Anglican

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Jolly Jape
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The difference, of course, is that there was a, presumably, thorough investigation by the police, the result of which was that the relevant authorities, in this case the DPP, found that there was no case to answer. Futhermore, the person concerned was not a member of the establishment with friends in high places, but an ordinary Joe, caught up in what must have seemed to him to be a nightmare. So I don't think the two situations are in any way comparable.

[ 16. December 2016, 21:41: Message edited by: Jolly Jape ]

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To those who have never seen the flow and ebb of God's grace in their lives, it means nothing. To those who have seen it, even fleetingly, even only once - it is life itself. (Adeodatus)

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BroJames
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There may not be enough evidence to prove beyond reasonable doubt (the criminal standard of proof) that someone is guilty (nor even to charge them - especially where a child may need to give evidence), but enough evidence to show that on the balance of probabilities (the civil standard of proof relevant to safeguarding action) that they should be excluded from contact with children.

Courts are slow to grant Sexual Risk Orders, and will not do so if e.g. they are satisfied that sufficient protection will be given by the person concerned giving binding undertakings as to their behaviour and/or activities.

The circumstances are at least consistent with the above, and do explain the actions of the D&C. They can't say X has done such and such, because it hasn't been (criminally) proved. But they can't ignore it if the evidence shows that on the balance of probabilities it took place. If X continues to deny anything took place, and a group of people as a group are unwilling to accept the safeguarding decision, then either the D&C excludes the group or they ignore their safeguarding policy. Meanwhile they can't give details both for the protection of the alleged victims, and because nothing has been criminally proven against X.

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