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Safeguarding Policy

Safeguarding Adults Policy and Procedure

1. Policy Statement

Safeguarding is everybody’s responsibility. Headway Surrey DBS checks staff and volunteers.

A vulnerable adult is any person aged 18 years or over who is, or may be, unable to take care of him or herself or who is unable to protect him or herself against significant harm or exploitation. This may be because he or she has a mental health problem, a disability, a sensory impairment, is old and frail, or has some form of illness.

The rights of vulnerable adults to live a life free from neglect, exploitation and abuse are protected by the Human Rights Act 1998. Specifically, a vulnerable adult’s right to life is protected (under Article 2); their right to be protected from inhuman and degrading treatment (under Article 3); and their right to liberty and security (under Article 5).

Our Commitment to Safeguarding

Abuse is a violation of an individual’s human and civil rights; it can take many forms. The Board of Trustees, staff and volunteers of Headway Surrey are committed to a practice which promotes the welfare of vulnerable adults and safeguards them from harm.

Staff and volunteers at Headway Surrey accept and recognise our responsibilities to develop awareness of the issues that cause vulnerable adults harm, and to establish and maintain a safe environment for them. We will not tolerate any form of abuse wherever it occurs or whoever is responsible.

We are committed to promoting an atmosphere of inclusion, transparency and openness and are open to feedback from the people who use our services, carers, advocates, our staff and our volunteers with a view to how we may continuously improve our services / activities.

We will endeavour to safeguard adults by:

  • Adhering to our safeguarding policy and ensuring that it is supported by robust procedures;
  • Carefully following the procedures laid down for the recruitment and selection of staff and volunteers;
  • Providing effective management for staff and volunteers through supervision, support and training;
  • Implementing clear procedures for raising awareness of, and responding to, abuse within the organisation and for reporting concerns to statutory agencies that need to know, while involving carers and vulnerable adults appropriately;
  • Ensuring general safety and risk management procedures are adhered to;
  • Promoting full participation and having clear procedures for dealing with concerns and complaints;
    Managing personal information, confidentiality and information sharing; and
  • Safeguarding vulnerable adults by implementing a code of behaviour for all involved with the organisation, including visitors.

Headway Surrey appoints staff and volunteers with great care to ensure as far as possible, that we do not employ anyone with improper motives for caring and working with service users.

2. Related Headway Surrey policies and procedures

You should also be aware of and adhere to the following policies:

  • Complaints, Compliments and Comments Policy and Procedure
  • Disciplinary Policy and Procedure
  • Whistle-blowing Policy and Procedure
  • Bullying and Harassment Policy and Procedure
  • Confidentiality Policy and Procedure

3. Responsibilities

Everyone has a responsibility to report abuse or concerns of abuse.

3.1 CEO and Trustees

  • To ensure that all staff and volunteers have access to this policy and therefore know what to do in the event of a breach of this policy.
  • To ensure that safeguards are in place to protect the interests of the client.
  • To ensure that the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) board is informed if there are any concerns about an employee/volunteer regarding vulnerable adults.

3.2 All employees / volunteers

All employees will;

Attend mandatory Safeguarding of Vulnerable Adult training. However, the level of training that an employee has received (or not) will not negate their responsibility to report abuse.

Read and, be aware of the contents of and always adhere to this policy .

4. Audit Plan

The CEO will:

  • Monitor adherence of the policy and report findings to the Board of Trustee
  • Report any concerns as required under the Vetting and Barring Scheme.

5. Scope

This policy applies within all Headway Surrey Services and includes all employees and/or volunteers as well as the Board of Trustees.

6. Guidelines for dealing with concerns about suspected Abuse

Headway Surrey has a duty to ensure that our clients are protected, and we need to ensure that we respond in the ‘best interest of’ our clients. Depending on the circumstance this might or might not be with the consent of the client. Guidance should be sought from the CEO. Employees should ensure that all concerns are dealt with sensitively and in the strictest confidence.

Employees should be aware it might not always be appropriate to take concerns forward formally and therefore all suspected concerns of abuse should be reported to the CEO. It is the responsibility of the CEO to decide the course of action to be taken.

All relevant documentation i.e. personal files and Headway Surrey Incident Form should be completed. Confidentiality should always be respected and information should only be shared with those ‘on a need to know only’ basis.

The severity of the suspected abuse may require the matter to be referred to appropriate agencies e.g. care / case manager, social services, or the police. Before making a referral, we may consult adult social services, if appropriate.

It is a legal requirement to contact the ISA board if there are any concerns about any employee/volunteer working with vulnerable adults and therefore you must speak to the CEO if you have any concerns about any employee/volunteer, who will decide on the appropriate course of action to take. Headway Surrey should ensure that all reports are accurate and written by the relevant clients of staff involved only.

6.1 Procedure:

This procedure describes the actions that should be followed by an individual who is concerned about abuse and details how they should raise an alert.

Anyone may become aware of or concerned about abuse in several ways.

  • Observed Abuse: the abuse has been directly witnessed
  • Disclosed Abuse: an adult says they are being or have been abused
  • Suspected Abuse: there are indicators that abuse is happening, but it has not been witnessed or disclosed.

Safeguarding immediate risk:

The first action is to ensure the immediate safety of the adult at risk. If there is an immediate risk of harm or need for treatment the police and/or the ambulance service should be contacted on 999.

If a crime is suspected or alleged the police should be informed:

  • in the case of an emergency via the 999 number,
  • in non-emergency situations via the 101 number.

If the client is not in immediate danger, follow the procedure below:

  • An alert must be reported within 24 hours or sooner depending on urgency and risk.

Advise Headway Surrey CEO of suspected abuse. If the CEO is suspected of abuse, contact the Headway Surrey Chair of Trustees and Headway UK Network Support Team - 0115 924 0800.

Advise the service user that we are required to contact the Safeguarding Team, even if they do not wish for us to do so. Do not question the service user further, investigate further or request any written statements or reports.

Do not speak to the alleged abuser. Keep the matter confidential and only discuss with the CEO (or Chair if appropriate).

Advise the service user that they have the option to decline further intervention if they wish, once Social Services have been informed.

Contact Surrey Safeguarding Board -

If you suspect somebody is being harmed, don’t ignore it, report it!

or complete the MASH referral form and email to Adults MASH
Out of hours Emergency

Call the Adult Social Care Emergency Duty Team 01483 517898

Contact Surrey Adult Social Care

Information and Advice
Availability: 8am to 6pm, Monday to Friday
Phone: 0300 200 1005
Textphone (via Text Relay): 18001 0300 200 1005
SMS: 07527 182 861 (for the deaf or hard of hearing)

Concerns of abuse, neglect or harm
If you're at risk of the above, or suspect someone else is, you must report it. Contact Surrey Multi Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH):

Availability: 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday
Phone: 0300 470 9100

Out of hours emergency
Availability: Outside 9am-5pm, Mon-Fri.
Phone: 01483 517898
Textphone (via Text Relay): 18001 01483 517898
SMS: 07800000388 (for the deaf or hard of hearing)

7. Monitoring and Review

We will review our policy, procedures, code of behaviour and practice at regular intervals, at least once every two years.