Safeguarding · adults at risk

Policy & Procedures

We all have a responsibility to safeguard adults who are experiencing, or are at risk of, abuse and neglect.

This policy and procedure outlines what adult safeguarding is and what to do if you have a concern. The safeguarding children and young people policy, for those under the age of 18, is covered in a separate document – Safeguarding Children & Vulnerable Adults.

Policy statement

This organisation is committed to creating and maintaining a safe and positive environment for all people benefiting from or involved in our support and activities. It accepts its responsibility to assist in the welfare of all people and to safeguard them from poor practice, abuse and bullying.

All individuals within the organisation – members, volunteers, staff and trustees – have a role and responsibility to help ensure the safety and welfare of adults.

This organisation accepts that we are required to fulfil our duty of care, which means that we must do everything that can be reasonably expected of us to help safeguard and protect people from harm, and to act when we suspect that someone is being harmed, or is at risk of harm.

What is adult safeguarding?

The official definition of “Adult safeguarding” is working with adults with care and support needs to keep them safe from abuse or neglect. It is an important part of what many public services and charities do, and a key responsibility of local authorities (Care Act 2014).

The safeguarding duties apply to an adult who:
• has needs for care and support (whether or not the local authority is meeting any of those needs)
• is experiencing, or is at risk of, abuse or neglect
• is unable to protect themselves from either the risk of, or the experience of, abuse or neglect, as a result of those care and support needs

Adults who fulfil this criteria are ‘adults at risk’.

People can have a need for care and support for a variety of reasons – for example they may have a learning disability, a physical disability, a chronic health condition or have a mental health issue. Such conditions may bring with them additional vulnerabilities, however having care and support needs does not mean that people are automatically adults at risk and need safeguarding.

Safeguarding adults is underpinned by:
• The Care Act 2014
• Mental Capacity Act (MCA) 2005

Types of abuse suffered by adults identified in the Care Act 2014 are:

  • Physical
  • Sexual
  • Psychological/Emotional/Mental
  • Financial and material
  • Neglect and act of omission
  • Discriminatory
  • Organisational
  • Modern Day Slavery
  • Domestic Violence
  • Self Neglect – including hoarding

Other types of harm that adults may experience include:

  • Cyber Bullying
  • Forced Marriage
  • Female Genital Mutilation
  • Mate Crime
  • Radicalisation

Safe recruitment and safeguarding training

We want to make sure that all of our volunteers and staff have the right skills and qualities to create a safe environment. All staff and volunteers will be subject to safe recruitment procedures and will also be updated with any relevant legislation, policies and procedural changes. Appropriate training will also be identified and offered, including safeguarding adults training.

Communication

The organisation will make available its Safeguarding Adults Policy and Procedures to all staff, volunteers, members and partner organisations.

What to do if you have concerns about an adult member

Organisation members, staff and volunteers are not expected to be an expert in recognition of a safeguarding concern; however, all adults working, volunteering and participating have a duty of care to be vigilant and respond appropriately to suspicions of poor practice, abuse or bullying. They should also respond to any indication of abuse that may be occurring outside of the organisation setting.

This does not mean that it is your responsibility to decide if a situation is poor practice, abuse or bullying, but it is your responsibility to report your concerns to the designated person within RTSUK – see review box on front sheet.

If you cannot contact someone within the organisation or feel that your concerns are not being dealt with properly you can contact the relevant authority (the person’s home address local authority or in case of emergency, the Police or else your local Adult Social Services Duty Officer.