What is safeguarding adults

If someone is in immediate danger dial 999 and ask for police assistance

Safeguarding means protecting someone's right to live in safety, free from abuse and neglect. It involves people and organisations working together to prevent and stop that abuse or neglect. All safeguarding will honour the feelings, beliefs and decisions of the person in question. 

Safeguarding will also recognise that people sometimes have complex interpersonal relationships and they may be ambivalent, unclear or unrealistic about their own personal circumstances.

The Six Safeguarding Principles

All safeguarding work is supported by six key principles:

  1. Empowerment - we will support and encourage people to make their own decisions and give informed consent
  2. Prevention - we will strive to take action before harm occurs
  3. Proportionality - we will give the least intrusive response to the risk presented
  4. Protection - we will give support and representation for those in the greatest need
  5. Partnership - we will provide local solutions through local community services – communities have a part to play in preventing, detecting and reporting neglect and abuse
  6. Accountability - we insist upon accountability and transparency in all safeguarding practices

Who might need our services

Adults who fall under the below categories may be in need of safeguarding. This list, however, is not exhaustive. 

They may, for example: 

  • have care needs and support (whether or not the local authority is meeting any of those needs) 
  • are at risk of, or who have a history with, abuse or neglect
  • be unable to protect themselves from abuse or neglect due to their care needs

They may, for example, also:

  • be frail due to age, ill health, physical disability or cognitive impairment, or a combination of these
  • have a learning disability
  • have a physical disability and/or a sensory impairment
  • have mental health needs, such as dementia or a personality disorder
  • have a long-term illness/condition
  • suffer from alcohol or substance abuse
  • be unable to demonstrate enough mental capacity to make decisions and are in need of care and support

If you are concerned that an adult with care and support needs may be at risk of abuse or neglect, contact North Somerset Council via Care Connect on 01275 888801.

For more information on recognising the signs of abuse in children, see the North Somerset Safeguarding Children Partnership website.