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Safeguarding means protecting people’s right to live in safety, without abuse or neglect. Safeguarding involves people and organisations working together to stop abuse and neglect happening, and tackling it where it does.
Safeguarding is everyone's responsibility. We work closely with other agencies to promote people's welfare and protect them from harm.
Everyone employed by us has a role to play in identifying concerns, sharing information and taking prompt action when issues are identified.
The Six Key Principles of Safeguarding
The Care Act 2014 sets out six key principles that underpin all safeguarding work:
Empowerment – Personalisation and the presumption of person-led decisions and informed consent.
Prevention – It is better to take action before harm occurs.
Proportionality – Proportionate and least intrusive response appropriate to the risk presented.
Protection – Support and representation for those in greatest need.
Partnership – Local solutions through services working with their communities. Communities have a part to play in preventing, detecting and reporting neglect and abuse.
Accountability – Accountability and transparency in delivering safeguarding.
Housing providers have a duty to co-operate with local authorities implementing their statutory duties around safeguarding. This may include: conducting ‘enquiries’ into incidents, sharing information or engaging with local Safeguarding Boards.
What is Abuse?
Abuse can take many forms, these include:
Physical abuse- including hitting, slapping, pushing, kicking, misuse of medication, restraint, or inappropriate sanctions.
Sexual abuse- including rape and sexual assault or sexual acts to which the vulnerable adult has not consented.
Emotional/psychological abuse- including emotional abuse, threats of harm or abandonment, deprivation of contact, humiliation, blaming, controlling, intimidation, coercion, harassment, verbal abuse, isolation or withdrawal from services or supportive networks.
Financial abuse- including theft, fraud, exploitation, pressure in connection with wills property or inheritance or financial transactions, or the misuse or misappropriation of property, possessions or benefits.
Neglect/Acts of omission- including ignoring medical or physical care needs, failure to provide access to appropriate health, social care or educational services, the withholding of the necessities of life, such as medication, adequate nutrition, and heating, poor quality living environments.
Discriminatory abuse- including abuse based on a person’s race, sex, disability, faith, sexual orientation, or age; other forms of harassment, slurs or similar treatment or hate crime/hate incident.
Forced marriage- a marriage without the consent of one or both parties and where duress is a factor.
Reporting a Safeguarding Issue
If there is a child or adult in immediate danger or a crime has been committed it is really important that you phone 999 for the Police.
Once you have done this or if the issue is not immediate, you can report your concerns directly to your local authority safeguarding adult or child team by looking up Safeguarding on their website or callng them.
You can also alert us to your concerns by calling our Contact Centre on 0333 200 7304.
Confidentiality and Anonymous Reporting
Reporting abuse can be done anonymously. We will not normally take action or share information without the consent of the person who is being abused. The exception to this is when there are others at risk of harm and/or where the person at risk is not able to make a decision for themselves because of their mental capacity or where we believe the risk could seriously affect their well-being.
What Happens When We Are Alerted to Potential Abuse Occurring?
We will carry out a risk assessment to decide whether to make a referral to the Local Authority Safeguarding Team. If we do make a referral, the Local Authority Safeguarding Team will review what has happened and decide whether the best way of helping is to continue following safeguarding procedures, or look to see if there is a more appropriate way to provide support.
Due to confidentiality we will not be able to share with you the outcomes of any referral we make.