Vulnerable Adults and Children
Guidelines for Staff and Volunteers working with Adults
"There can be no secrets and no hiding place when it comes to exposing the abuse of vulnerable adults"
The Care Standards Act, No Secrets and Speaking Up For Justice form a comprehensive system for identifying and reporting crime against vulnerable adults.
Locally there are policies, procedures and guidance to protect vulnerable adults in all settings, from all forms of abuse. Here is a very brief summary of what abuse is, and what you should do.
A vulnerable adult is someone over 18 who is or may be in need of community care services, and may be being cared for by you.
Abuse is the violation of an individual's human and civil rights by any other person or persons. It may be something that is done to the person or something not done when it should have been. It may be:
- Physical Abuse, which includes hitting, pushing, inappropriate use of medication, sanctions or restraint.
- Sexual Abuse, which includes rape and any sexual act which was not freely consenting.
- Psychological/Emotional Abuse, which includes threats, intimidation, coercion, harassment.
- Financial Abuse, which includes theft, and pressure in connection with wills or property, possessions or benefits;
- Neglect which includes ignoring medical or physical needs, not providing access to appropriate health, social care, the withholding of the necessities of life, such as medication, adequate nutrition and heating.
- Discriminatory Abuse, which includes, all forms of harassment, slurs or similar treatment based on a person's disability, race or gender.
If you have any concerns or suspicions that abuse has occurred
- You must report this to your manager
- Your organisation will have a procedure for dealing with situations of abuse
- Your manager must ensure that the appropriate local social services is alerted
- You should be protected by your organisation's whistle blowing policy
Protecting vulnerable children
What should I do if I think a child is being abused or neglected?
It is vital that child safety is a matter for everyone - not just those who work in the child protection service.
If you are worried about a child for any reason, contact Social Services and talk about your concerns. Please do not keep your worries to yourself.