PCR2 Review Update 25/3/20

Current work on the PCR2 Review has been suspended in light of the COVID-19 crisis. The situation will be reviewed on the 25th June and will be updated thereafter.



Original Announcement

The past cases review (PCR) conducted  in 2007 – 2009, was a large-scale review of the handling by the Church of child protection cases over many years. The aim of the review was to identify persons presenting ongoing risks to children whose cases had not been acted on appropriately.  As the scope of that review was in relation to harm to children, all dioceses have now been asked to re-examine and extend the review to consider any potential risk to adults. In this new past cases review (PCR2), the House of Bishops wants to ensure that our churches and church-related activities are as safe as possible for children and vulnerable adults. It is therefore important that all cases of concern relating to children, young people and vulnerable adults have been considered and dealt with appropriately.

A primary aim of PCR2 is to ensure that there are no outstanding and unmanaged safeguarding risks to children, young people and vulnerable adults posed by church officers.   The review will seek to ensure that the support needs of known survivors of church abuse have been considered and met.  


Parish Involvement

Parishes have a key role to play in PCR2 and they have been asked to check any records held within the parish. 

The following information was sent to Incumbents and priests-in-charge in the Diocese of Durham for their action and returns on: 13th January 2020, with copies being sent to all Parish Safeguarding Officers, Churchwardens. Where churches are in vacancy the churchwardens are responsible for providing the returns.

    • Letter from the Bishop of Durham
    • Declarations (Past Cases Review Record & Confirmation Return)
    • FAQs


Support to survivors of abuse

Survivors were not invited to contribute to the original PCR and that shortcoming is being addressed in PCR2 as the Church has wanted to ensure a different, trauma-informed approach is taken. Listening to survivor voices has helped to shape how this review will be conducted.

Individuals who wish to make representations to the PCR2 process, regarding how the church dealt with their experience are invited to contact Frank Whitelock, Independent Reviewer will be updated after the 25th of June – please see note above. 

Anyone who wishes to come forward with information or make a disclosure regarding church-related abuse are encouraged to contact the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser, Beth Miller on 07968 034075 or email beth.miller@durham.anglican.org.

However, realising that this may not feel safe for those with a lived experience of abuse from within the church, a dedicated telephone helpline – 0800 80 20 20 – operated independently from the church by the NSPCC has been set up.

Anyone can use the helpline to provide information or to raise concerns regarding abuse within the Church of England context, whether they are reporting issues relating to children or adults or seeking to whistleblow about poor safeguarding practice.

More information about PCR2 is available from the Church of England website at:https://www.churchofengland.org/safeguarding/promoting-safer-church/safeguarding-news-statements/past-cases-review-2

Our Diocesan Safeguarding Team can be contacted via: safeguarding.administrator@durham.anglican.org 

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