Five non-executive directors have been appointed to the new Scottish Catholic Safeguarding Standards Agency (SCSSA):

    • Clare Burns solicitor former Reporter to the Children’s Panel.
    • Marie Connell former Detective Inspector, Police Scotland.
    • Greg Gallagher former Senior Manager, Head of Service and Director of Children’s Services in Social Work Services.
    • Pauline McDonald Head of Health, Safety & Compliance, ENABLE Scotland.
    • Patrick O’Meara former strategic commander, Scottish Ambulance Service; Chief Medical Support Officer to the UK Army Cadets.

The announcement comes following the appointment by the Catholic Church in Scotland of Lady Rita Rae QC as the first Board Chair of the SCSSA.

She said: "I look forward to having the benefit of their expertise and advice as we commence the task of establishing this agency which will have the role of assuring safeguarding compliance in the Catholic Church in Scotland.

“Throughout the recruitment process, I have been greatly impressed by the calibre of those who came forward to offer their services. It was not easy to settle on a final choice from the excellent candidates who applied.”

Lady Rae commissioned recruitment agency Aspen People to manage a process which was open to anyone and which welcomed applications from people of all faith backgrounds and none.

The SCSSA will operate entirely independently of the Catholic Church, with its own staff and non-executive directors to ensure that dioceses and religious communities are meeting safeguarding standards.