Safeguarding and Guidance

Abbreviated version – click here for full policy document

Safeguarding is everyone’s business and Redbourn Care Group (RCG) will comply with its responsibilities under the Care Act 2014 and work together with other organisations to protect people who need help and support.

Redbourn Care Group is committed to

  • Ensuring that the welfare of adults they work with and support, is paramount at all times
  • Maximising people’s choice, control and inclusion and protecting their human rights
  • Working in partnership with others in order to safeguard adults at risk
  • Ensuring safe and effective working practices are in place

This policy and guidance sets out the roles and responsibilities of Redbourn Care Group in working together with other professionals and agencies in promoting adults welfare and safeguarding them from abuse and neglect.

This guidance applies to all volunteers, trustees and others (permanent, seconded, temporary or voluntary) working within Redbourn Care Group and applies to them.

Definition of adults at risk

The definition is set out in the Care Act 2014 and the safeguarding duty applies to a person over 18 years who

  • has needs for care and support (whether or not the local authority is meeting any of those needs) and
  • is experiencing, or is at risk of, abuse or neglect and
  • as a result of those needs is unable to protect themselves against the abuse or neglect or the risk of it.

Thus, all adults who meet the above criteria may be defined as adults at risk.

Click here for pdf with diagrams, flowchart and table.

Who is at risk of being abused?  Any adult aged over 18 years and who:

  • has needs for care and support
  • is experiencing, or at risk of abuse or neglect
  • is unable to protect themselves against significant harm or exploitation

Types and indicators of abuse and neglect

The Care Act 2014 and the Care and Support Statutory Guidance define the categories of abuse but emphasises that organisations should not limit their view on what constitutes abuse.  The main forms of abuse are below.  This is not an exhaustive list but an illustration as to the sort of behaviour that could give rise to a Safeguarding concern.

Type of Abuse
Description of Abuse
Physical abuse Including assault, hitting, slapping, pushing, misuse of medication, restraint or inappropriate physical sanctions.
Domestic violence / abuse Including psychological, physical, sexual, financial, emotional abuse; so called ‘honour’ based violence.
Sexual abuse Including rape, indecent exposure, sexual harassment, inappropriate looking or touching, sexual teasing or innuendo, sexual photography, subjection to pornography or witnessing sexual acts, indecent exposure and sexual assault or sexual acts to which the adult has not consented or was pressured into consenting, sexual exploitation.
Psychological abuse Including emotional abuse, threats of harm or abandonment, radicalisation, deprivation of contact, humiliation, blaming, controlling, intimidation, coercion, harassment, verbal abuse, cyber bullying, isolation or unreasonable and unjustified withdrawal of services or supportive networks.
Financial or material abuse Including theft, fraud, internet scamming, coercion in relation to an adult’s financial affairs or arrangements, including in connection with wills, property, inheritance or financial transactions, or the misuse or misappropriation of property, possessions or benefits.
Modern slavery Encompasses slavery, human trafficking, forced labour and domestic servitude. Traffickers and slave masters use whatever means they have at their disposal to coerce, deceive and force individuals into a life of abuse, servitude and inhumane treatment.
Discriminatory abuse Including forms of harassment, slurs or similar treatment; because of race, gender and gender identity, age, disability, sexual orientation or religion.
Organisational abuse Including neglect and poor care practice within an institution or specific care setting such as a hospital or care home, for example, or in relation to care provided in one’s own home. This may range from one off incidents to on-going ill-treatment. It can be through neglect or poor professional practice as a result of the structure, policies, processes and practices within an organisation.
Neglect and acts of omission Including ignoring medical, emotional or physical care needs, failure to provide access to appropriate health, care and support or educational services, the withholding of the necessities of life, such as medication, adequate nutrition and heating.
Self-neglect  This covers a wide range of behaviour; neglecting to care for one’s personal hygiene, health or surroundings and includes behaviour such as hoarding.

 

Responsibilities of Redbourn Care Group

  • To take action to identify and prevent abuse from happening.
  • Respond appropriately when abuse has or is suspected to have occurred.
  • Ensure volunteers, trustees, Office Manager and others who work with RCG are aware of their opportunities to attend training and support them in accessing these events.
  • Ensuring that the organisation has a dedicated member with an expertise in safeguarding adults.
  • Ensure that all volunteers and staff who come in contact with adults with care and support needs have a DBS check in line with the requirements of theDisclosure and Barring Service.
  • Whilst it is unlikely that RCG would work directly with children, in the event that this were to happen, the policy is to always have a 2-adult presence i.e. whenever we work with children it will always be in the presence of a parent or guardian, or a responsible adult nominated by them.

Responsibilities of all volunteers, trustees, office manager and others who work with RCG

  • Follow the safeguarding policies and procedures at all times, particularly if concerns arise about the safety or welfare of an adult at risk.
  • Participate in appropriate safeguarding adults updates/training and maintain current working knowledge as appropriate.
  • Discuss any concerns about the welfare of an adult at risk with the Office Manager and/or the Trustee who is the designated Safeguarding Lead.
  • Contribute to actions required including information sharing and attending meetings where required.
  • Work collaboratively with other agencies to safeguard and protect the welfare of people who engage with the service.
  • Remain alert at all times to the possibility of abuse.

Training

All volunteers, trustees, office manager and others who work with RCG should receive a basic safeguarding adults awareness training at a level according to their role.

Reporting Abuse

Make a referral to Adult Safeguarding using the link click here
What to do if you think an adult at risk may be subject to abuse or neglect
Take immediate action to keep the person safe, for example by calling an ambulance.  Where there is immediate danger to life, serious injury or a crime committed dial 999 OR 111
Consult with the Designated Safeguarding Lead

Peta Gunson : peta@redbourncaregroup.co.uk : 07836553264

Useful contact number:

Hertfordshire Health and Community Services 0300 123 4042

This policy will be subject to annual review.

Policy approved and adopted by all Trustees April 2019.

Policy Statements

As a caring organisation, Redbourn Care Group (RCG) seeks to provide an environment where all members (also known as volunteers) and clients can work or be supported fairly and safely.  We will take reasonable precautions to protect and minimise risk to our members, clients and the wider community we serve.

RCG is committed to ensure that all members are kept safe from harm whilst they are involved with the organisation in any way.  The RCG and its members will also fulfil the responsibilities in relation to any legislation, including the Equality Act (2010) to protect people from discrimination, and the Care Act (2014) to protect a person’s right to live in safety, free from abuse and neglect (see separate Safeguarding Policy).

As a voluntary organisation working with adults at risk, we will seek to

  • Promote the general welfare, health and wellbeing and safeguarding of adults at risk
  • Protect, maintain and uphold the human rights of all
  • Eliminate discrimination
  • Have in place and follow clearly defined procedures for recruiting members
  • Ensure that all members are capable of carrying out their role
  • Ensure that members know what their responsibilities are and how to record and report their concerns
  • Ensure that members are encouraged to report any abuse, alleged malpractice, illegal acts or omissions
  • Ensure effective procedures are in place for responding/referring complaints and disclosures/allegations
  • Whilst it is unlikely that RCG would work directly with children, in the event that this were to happen, the policy is to always have a 2-adult presence i.e. whenever we work with children it will always be in the presence of a parent or guardian, or a responsible adult nominated by them
  • Always have a 2-adult presence when providing our clients with transport and outings using the RCG minibus

We encourage clients (service users) and members to feel comfortable, part of a social group and to communicate with the Office Manager or a Trustee if they have a suggestion for improvement or a concern.  This includes sharing any ideas for future developments and/or raising any problems they may experience using or delivering the Group’s service.

With the permission of clients or to comply with our legal responsibilities, we may contact other agencies as relevant or required.

If a volunteer or client suspects, experiences or witnesses ill treatment of another person while involved in the Group, we expect them to tell the Office Manager, or any other Trustee who would then pass on the information in confidence to a relevant and appropriate body.  Only people who would need to know about this would be told.

The Trustees will fully investigate and seek to resolve all complaints, of whatever nature, concerning the provision and delivery of service or member activity.  If this cannot be achieved, then a person of expertise will be approached to determine resolution.

Equality

It is RCG’s policy to treat all persons with dignity and respect.  It is unlawful to discriminate against anyone because of age, being or becoming a transsexual person, being married or in a civil partnership, being pregnant or having a child, disability, race including colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin, religion, belief or lack of religion/belief, sex, and sexual orientation.  These are called ‘protected characteristics’.

We will seek to ensure that no one who gives or receives a service with us or is a member of RCG will be treated detrimentally.  We do not tolerate abusive or unfair treatment, whether in word or deed, and will investigate and take action as required.

Specifically, each member has a personal responsibility for treating all clients, and other members, without any form of discrimination as follows

  • direct discrimination – treating someone with a protected characteristic less favourably than others
  • indirect discrimination – putting rules or arrangements in place that apply to everyone, but that put someone with a protected characteristic at an unfair disadvantage
  • harassment – unwanted behaviour linked to a protected characteristic that violates someone’s dignity or creates an offensive environment for them
  • victimisation – treating someone unfairly because they’ve complained about discrimination or harassment

Whistle blowing

If a member believes there is malpractice or wrongdoing, they can and should ‘blow the whistle’.

The accepted name for reporting a concern is ‘making a disclosure in the public interest’.  Such action is taken for the good of society.  All members will be supported and protected if they decide to ‘blow the whistle’ on the organisation or a colleague.  All such reports will be directed to a Trustee who may seek the advice of others on the Board of Trustees and will decide on the appropriate course of action.

This policy will be subject to annual review.

Policy approved and adopted by all Trustees April 2019.