Everyone has the right to live their lives free from abuse and neglect.
Safeguarding is about organisations working together to protect an adult’s right to live in free from abuse and neglect. It is also about making sure that, wherever possible, organisations listen and give regard to the adult’s wishes, choices and feelings. The aim is to safeguard adults in a way that supports them in making choices and having control about how they want to live.
Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility. If an ‘adult at risk’ is experiencing or suspected to be experiencing abuse or neglect, then the Local Authority must ensure that enquiries are made; including establishing if any action needs to be taken.
Who is an adult at risk?
An adult at risk is defined in the Care Act (2014) as anyone aged 18 and over who:
- Has needs for care and support (whether or not the local authority is meeting any of those needs)
- Is experiencing, or at risk of, abuse or neglect
- As a result of those care and support needs, is unable to protect themselves from either the risk of or the experience of abuse or neglect.
The Care Act (2014) places duties on the Local Authority, the NHS and the Police to cooperate to support adults at risk which is set out in the Care Act (2014) guidance. We require organisations that provide care funded by the NHS to comply with The Care Act (2014) and set this out in its contracts with providers. It also requires providers to comply with Somerset’s Safeguarding Adults Multi Agency Policy
Abuse may be one or a combination of different types of abuse, including physical, psychological, sexual, financial, organisational, discriminatory, modern slavery, neglect, self-neglect and domestic abuse and violence.
ICB responsibilities for safeguarding adults
The ‘Safeguarding Children, Young People and Adults at Risk in the NHS: Safeguarding and Accountability Assurance Framework (2019)’ outlines our statutory responsibility as an ICB to secure the expertise of designated professionals for both safeguarding adults and children:
The Somerset Safeguarding Adults Board
The Somerset Safeguarding Adults Board (SSAB) is a partnership committee providing strategic leadership for adult safeguarding across the county.