Safeguarding adults

This page contains an overview of the terms ‘safeguarding’ and ‘adults at risk'. It also contains information on how and when to report a case and how to do it.

National Safeguarding week

National Safeguarding Adults week takes place from Monday 21 November until Sunday 27 November 2022, and is a time for organisations to come together to raise awareness of important safeguarding issues, and enable more organisations and individuals to feel confident in recognising signs of abuse and neglect, and recording and reporting safeguarding concerns. It is co-ordinated nationally by the Ann Craft Trust, and the theme for this year is ‘responding to contemporary safeguarding challenges’.

Text says "We're supporting safeguarding adults week 2022! #SafeguardingAdultsWeek"

Northumberland Children and Adults Safeguarding Adults Partnership (NCASP) is a group of agencies who work together to protect children and adults with care and support needs from abuse and neglect.
Throughout Safeguarding Adults Week, the NCASP Board and partner agencies will be taking to social media to highlight important safeguarding adults messages. Check out our NCC Twitter and Facebook pages.

Please see our information padlet for more information about NCASP, Safeguarding Adults, and Safeguarding events and resources.

The Partnership have planned a range of activities to take place during this week, and there are number of webinars taking place which are open to all, and cover a range of topics linked to safeguarding adults and emerging issues and practice.  NCASP will also be launching their newsletter, providing information and updates about safeguarding, and the work of the Partnership.

We are also launching a leaflet and a series of posters, aimed at the public and staff, to raise awareness of Safeguarding Adults, and when/how to report concerns:
Safeguarding Adults leaflet
Safeguarding Adults poster – Alison
Safeguarding Adults poster – Tommy
Safeguarding Adults poster – Margaret
Safeguarding Adults poster – Alan
Safeguarding Adults poster – Louise
Safeguarding Adults poster - Peter
Predatory Marriage - A Hidden Crime

Self Neglect awareness

Free webinar taking place on the 22 November 2022, during national safeguarding adults week:
The North East Region of the Association of the Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) are delighted to announce an upcoming webinar taking place during National Adults Safeguarding Week 2022. 

Our webinar will be running on Tuesday 22nd November at 12.00 pm to 1.30 pm and will feature an overarching introduction to the theme of Self-Neglect along with a number of bite-sized information sessions, all delivered by nationally recognised professionals and academics in their chosen field of expertise.
Come prepared to find out more about:-

  • Hoarding;
  • Homelessness; 
  • Issues arising from trauma;
  • Alcohol and substance misuse and;
  • Ideas on how to engage with vulnerable adults in need of help.

We will also be formally launching our new animation – “What to do about Self-Neglect” and sharing 7 handy resource guides for professionals and practitioners on themes relating to self-neglect. 

To watch our animation, view the webinar programme and book your place please visit here.
 

How to report a concern about a vulnerable adult who is at risk of neglect or abuse in Northumberland.

If you are concerned about a vulnerable adult who is at risk of neglect or abuse in Northumberland contact: 

Onecall:  01670 536 400
Text phone: 01670 536 844
Email: safeguardingreferrals@northumberland.gov.uk

Safeguarding Adult referrals should be made using the Safeguarding Adults Enquiry Form.
If you need medical advice and support immediately, but it’s not life threatening, call your GP or NHS 111.

You should always call 999 in an emergency - for example when someone’s life is at risk or someone is seriously injured or critically ill.



For Adult Social Care staff:
If you are a member of Adult Social Care staff and want to report a concern. Please complete a Request for a decision form, and submit to the safeguardingreferrals@northumberland.gov.uk.

To report a crime:

In an emergency, contact the police, tel: 999

If the person is not in immediate danger, contact the police, tel: 101

To find out more information about safeguarding children please see:

Northumberland Safeguarding Children website 
Northumberland Safeguarding Children Board Procedures

You can find out more about what is abuse and how to speak up about abuse in the Easy Read booklets below:
Keeping Safe from Abuse - What is Abuse (Easy Read)
Keeping Safe from Abuse - Speaking up about Abuse (Easy Read)
 

Tricky Friends

'Tricky Friends' is a short animation originally developed by Norfolk Safeguarding Adults Board. The aim is to help people with learning disabilities, and also children and young adults, understand what good friendships are, when they might be harmful, and what they can do.

This can be used by carers, family, professionals and organisations, to raise awareness and help keep them safer while enjoying relationships.

Here you will find information about safeguarding adults at risk, how and when to report a case of abuse and how to do it.

Safeguarding means protecting an adult’s right to live in safety, free from abuse and neglect.

It is about people and organisations working together to prevent and stop both the risks and experience of abuse or neglect. At the same time it is essential that we make sure the person’s views, wishes, feelings and beliefs are a key part of deciding on any action.

From 1 April 2015 Safeguarding Adults is underpinned by The Care Act 2014. This calls for effective multi agency working to ensure that adults at risk of harm are safeguarded within our communities.

An adult at risk is defined by The Care Act 2014 as a person who:
  • Has needs for care and support (whether or not the authority is meeting any of those needs)
  • Is experiencing, or at risk of, abuse or neglect 
  • and as a result of those needs is unable to protect himself or herself against the abuse or neglect or the risk of it.

Abuse and Neglect

The Care Act 2014 identifies the following categories of abuse and neglect that should be included within Safeguarding Adult policy and procedures.

Abuse may be a single act or repeated acts of suspected, disclosed or witnessed abuse or neglect.

It may be:
  • Physical abuse, including hitting, slapping, pushing, kicking, misuse of medication, restraint, or inappropriate sanctions.
  • Sexual abuse, including rape and sexual assault or sexual exploitation or acts to which the vulnerable adult has not consented, or could not consent or was pressured into consenting.
  • Psychological abuse, including emotional abuse, threats of harm or abandonment, deprivation of contact, humiliation, blaming, controlling, intimidation, coercion, harassment, verbal abuse, isolation or withdrawal from services or supportive networks.
  • Financial or material abuse, including theft, fraud, exploitation, pressure in connection with wills, property or inheritance or financial transactions, or the misuse or misappropriation of property, possessions or benefit.
  • Neglect and acts of omission, including ignoring medical or physical care needs, failure to provide access to appropriate health, social care or educational services, the withholding of the necessities of life, such as medication, adequate nutrition and heating.
  • Discriminatory abuse, including forms of harassment, slurs or similar treatment because of race, gender and gender identity, age, disability, sexua orientation or religion.
  • Organisational abuse, including everything from individual acts of very poor professional practice to pervasive ill treatment, gross misconduct and systemic failure across a service.
  • Domestic abuse, including psychological, physical, sexual, financial, emotional abuse and “honour” based violence.
  • Modern day slavery, encompasses slavery, human trafficking, forced labour and domestic servitude.
  • Self-neglect, this covers a wide range of behaviours, including neglecting to care for one’s personal hygiene, health or surroundings and includes behaviours such as hoarding.
  • Radicalisation, the abusive process whereby adults with care and support needs are radicalised.
Abuse can happen anywhere - in a person's own home, a public place, care homes, hospitals, day centres or in the community. Anyone can neglect or abuse - family members, friends, neighbours, social workers, health staff, carers, volunteers and strangers. Stopping abuse or neglect is everyone’s responsibility and anyone can raise a concern.

If you or someone you know is being abused or neglected please report it.

If you require any general advice or more information please contact:

Safeguarding Adults Team
01670 536400 

 

If you are concerned that someone is at risk of, or experiencing, abuse or neglect please contact Onecall.

If your query relates to the Safeguarding Adults Board please contact Karen Wright, Senior Manager Safeguarding Adults.

 

From April 2022 the Northumberland Safeguarding Adults Board (SAB), which was formally a joint arrangement with North Tyneside SAB, integrated with Northumberland Strategic Safeguarding Partnership (NSSP) to form: The Northumberland Children and Adults Safeguarding Partnership (NCASP)

From December 2016 Northumberland has had joint Safeguarding Adults Board arrangements with North Tyneside, covering both geographical areas. However from April 2022, the Northumberland Safeguarding Adults Board integrated with the Children's Safeguarding Partnership (NSSP) to form the Northumberland Children and Adults Safeguarding Partnership (NCASP).

The purpose of the Northumberland Children and Adults Safeguarding Partnership (NCASP) is to support the Statutory Safeguarding Partners and Relevant Agencies to fulfil their responsibilities for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and adult with needs for care in support, and to ensure the effectiveness of safeguarding practice in Northumberland.
 
NCASP provides effective and informed leadership to the local safeguarding system and delivers a shared responsibility for the safeguarding of children, young people and adults at risk in Northumberland. The Partnership also seeks to engage with children, young people, adults and their families to inform its work. Central to the role of NCASP is to provide ‘added value’ to local safeguarding arrangements.

Click here for Northumberland Children and Adults Safeguarding Partnership information.
 
The Care Act 2014 introduced a statutory requirement for each local authority to set up a Safeguarding Adults Board (SAB). The main objective of a SAB is to assure itself that local safeguarding arrangements are in place and that partners act to help and protect adults in its area who meet the criteria under the act.
Click here to view the Care and Support Statutory Guidance.

The Safeguarding Adults Board is a multi-agency partnership that leads the strategic development of safeguarding adult’s work across, its main objecting being to improve local safeguarding arrangements to ensure partners act to help and protect adults experiencing, or at risk of neglect and abuse.

It does this by: 
  • Assuring itself that local safeguarding arrangements are in place as defined by the Care Act 2014 and statutory guidance
  • Assuring itself that safeguarding practice is person-centred and outcome-focused
  • Working collaboratively to prevent abuse and neglect where possible
  • Ensuring agencies and individuals give timely and proportionate responses when abuse or neglect have occurred
  • Assuring itself that safeguarding practice is continuously improving and enhancing the quality of life of adults in its area
  • Raising awareness within the wider community of the need to safeguarding adults at risk and promote their welfare
In accordance with the Care Act 2014, the SAB has three core duties:
  • Develop and publish a strategic plan setting out how they will meet their objectives and how their member partner agencies will contribute
  • Publish an annual report detailing how effective their work has been
  • Commission Safeguarding Adults Reviews (SARs) for any cases which meet the criteria for these

The Care Act 2014 stipulates that Safeguarding Adult Boards must publish:

  • an Annual report providing an overview of its work and achievements over the last year: 

Click here to view the latest Annual Report.

  • a Strategic Plan which explains how its vision and priorities will be delivered over the next year. 

Click here to view the latest Strategic Plan
 

Annual Reports

 

Strategic Plans


SAB Documents


SAB Meeting minutes

Minutes - North Tyneside & Northumberland SAB Meeting (December 2018)
Minutes - North Tyneside & Northumberland SAB Meeting (March 2019)
Summary Minutes - North Tyneside & Northumberland SAB meeting (June 2019)
Summary minutes - North Tyneside & Northumberland SAB meeting (Sept 2019)
Summary minutes - North Tyneside & Northumberland SAB meeting (December 2019)
Summary minutes - North Tyneside & Northumberland SAB meeting (March 2020)
Summary minutes - North Tyneside & Northumberland SAB meeting (June 2020)
Summary minutes - North Tyneside & Northumberland SAB meeting (Sept 2020)
Summary minutes - North Tyneside & Northumberland SAB meeting (December 2020)
Summary minutes - North Tyneside & Northumberland SAB meeting (March 2021)
Summary minutes - North Tyneside & Northumberland SAB meeting (June 2021)
Summary minutes - North Tyneside & Northumberland SAB meeting (Sept 2021)
Summary minutes - North Tyneside & Northumberland SAB meeting (December 2021)
Summary minutes - North Tyneside & Northumberland SAB meeting (March 2022)
If you have any enquiries relating to the Safeguarding Adults Board arrangements please contact: 

Karen Wright - Senior Manager, Safeguarding Adults
Email: karen.wright01@northumberland.gov.uk

Please note that this is for further information about the Safeguarding Adults Board only. If you are concerned that someone is at risk of, or experiencing, abuse or neglect please contact Onecall.
 

 

Safeguarding Adults Reviews (SARs) are a statutory requirement for Safeguarding Adults Boards (SABs)

 

What is a SAR?

Safeguarding adults practice can be improved by identifying what is helping and what is hindering safeguarding work, in order to tackle barriers to good practice, and protect adults from harm. 

Section 44 of the Care Act 2014 places a duty on local Safeguarding Adults Boards to arrange a SAR:

  • When an adult, with needs for care and support, (whether or not the local authority was meeting any of those needs) in its area dies as a result of abuse or neglect, whether known or suspected, and there is concern that partner agencies could have worked more effectively to protect the adult

or

  • If an adult in its area has not died, but the SAB knows or suspects that the adult has experienced serious abuse or neglect and there is concern that partner agencies could have worked more effectively to protect the adult

The purpose of a SAR is to learn lessons and make improvements rather than to blame individual people or organisations. This may be where a case can provide useful insights into the way organisations are working together to prevent and reduce abuse and neglect of adults.

There may be circumstances where the SAR criteria have not been fully met but it is felt that a review of the case would be beneficial. SAR's and Learning Reviews can also be used to explore examples of good practice where it is likely that lessons can be applied to future cases. These are decisions made by the Safeguarding Adults Review Committee.

Please see our 7 minute guide to Safeguarding Adult Reviews.

 

SAR referrals

The Safeguarding Adults Review Committee considers all referrals for SARs. This multi-agency group makes recommendations to the Safeguarding Adults Board on whether a SAR should be held, or if other actions should be taken to respond to the issues identified. Any agency can make a referral to the Safeguarding Adults Review Committee.

For further information regarding SARs please click here to view the North of Tyne Safeguarding Adult Review Policy and Procedure 2018 (Updated 2020) 

Please click here to make a referral to the Safeguarding Adults Review Committee. 

Please click here to make a referral for a case discussion or sharing of learning/intelligence.

SAR Quality Markers:

Please click here for the North East SAR Quality Marker checklist and guidance.

Please click here for the National SAR Quality Markers guidance.



SAR reports 

SAR findings and recommendations are reported to the SAB and action plans are produced.  The SAB then monitors the implementation of these plans, supported by the Safeguarding Adults Review Committee. The SAR report is then published, which is agreed with the family members or appropriate others.

Northumberland Safeguarding Adult Review Reports:

In November 2019 the North Tyneside and Northumberland SAB published a Safeguarding Adults Review in relation to Leanne Patterson. Click here to view the report and accompanying statement.  

In December 2018 the North Tyneside and Northumberland SAB published a Safeguarding Adult Review in relation to Adult W. Click here to view the report and accompanying statement.

In 2012 Northumberland SAB published a Safeguarding Adults Review in relation to Adult H.

Please click here to access the National SAR library.

The following documents have been produced to assist professionals undertaking safeguarding adults work.

Northumberland multi-agency Safeguarding Adults policy and procedures provide an overarching framework for Safeguarding Adults, and sets out what actions staff and agencies should take to protect adults at risk of harm from abuse.

Professionals should refer to the multi-agency safeguarding procedures and staff guidance to inform their actions when there is a concern about abuse or neglect.

Click her to view the Northumberland Safeguarding Adults policy and procedures

Professionals may also consult the NSAB Safeguarding Adults Risk Threshold Tool to inform their decision making.

Click here to view the NSAB Safeguarding Adults Risk Threshold Tool.

A range of urther practice guidance is also available to assist professionals, please see 'practice guidance' section below.

 

Local policies, procedures and working practice information for professionals:
Child to Parent Violence and Abuse Pathway
Exploitation Strategy - Northumberland - 2020-2023
NSAB Safeguarding Adults Risk Threshold Tool
North of Tyne Modern Day Slavery guidance
North of Tyne Safeguarding Adults Review Policy and Procedures
North of Tyne Self-Neglect guidance
North of Tyne Organisational Abuse Enquiries guidance
Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking Briefing
Modern Day Slavery and Human Trafficking Guidance
Northumbria Police Partnership Intelligence form
Northumbria Police Submitting Intelligence Briefing (27.03.19)
Northumberland Modern Slavery, Trafficking and Exploitation Concept of Operations
Northumberland Prevent Pathway
Northumberland Prevent Referral form
Northumberland Safeguarding Adults Falls Policy
Northumberland Safeguarding Transitions Protocol

Briefings and 7 minute briefings:
CARE (Caring about Adversity, Resilience and Empowerment) 7 minute briefing
Child to Parent Violence and Abuse 7 minute briefing
Cuckooing briefing
Discriminatory abuse/Hate/Mate crime
Domestic Abuse Act
Language briefing
Newcastle JSCR 7 minute guide
Making Safeguarding Personal 7 minute briefing
Professional Curiosity 7 minute briefing
Self-neglect briefing

Northumbria Missing Adults Protocol:
Northumbria Missing Adults Protocol (February 2022)
Northumbria Missing Adults Protocol Appendix 2 - Return Home Interview schedule
Northumbria Missing Adults Protocol Appendix 3 - Herbert Protocol form
Northumbria Missing Adults Protocol Appendix 4 - Winnie Protocol form

Regional 7 x 7 Self-Neglect 7 minute briefings:
Self-Neglect 7 minute briefing - Alcohol and Substance Misuse
Self-Neglect 7 minute briefing - Engagement
Self-Neglect 7 minute briefing - Hoarding
Self-Neglect 7 minute briefing - Homelessness
Self-Neglect 7 minute briefing - Overview
Self-Neglect 7 minute briefing - Self-care
Self-Neglect 7 minute briefing - Trauma

National reports of interest
Adult Safeguarding and Homelessness: A briefing on positive practice
Adult Safeguarding and Homelessness: Experience-informed practice
Alcohol Change UK (July 2019) - Learning from tragedies: an analysis of alcohol-related Safeguarding Adult Reviews published in 2017
Alcohol Change UK (December 2020) - Safeguarding Vulnerable Dependent Drinkers
Alcohol Change UK (September 2021) - How to use legal powers to safeguard highly vulnerable dependent drinkers
Discriminatory Abuse: A briefing for practitioners
LGA/ADASS Safeguarding Resources
Pressure Ulcers and the Interface with a Safeguarding Enquiry (DHSC)
Safeguarding adults in care homes NICE guidance
Safeguarding people in closed environments
Making decisions on the duty to carry out safeguarding enquiries
Understanding what constitutes a safeguarding concern
Scamwise: spotting, avoiding and reporting scams (Independent Age)
SCIE: Safeguarding Adults - types and indicators of abuse

To find out more information on how to help if you believe someone you know is the victim of domestic abuse please see the Domestic Abuse website
 

MARAC - Multi-Agency Risk Assessment Conference

A MARAC is a meeting where information is shared on the highest risk domestic abuse cases between representatives of local police, health, child protection, housing practitioners, Independent Domestic Violence Advisors (IDVAs) and other specialists from the statutory and voluntary sectors.

A victim should be referred to the relevant MARAC if they are an adult (16+) who resides in the borough and are at high risk of domestic violence from their adult (16+) partner, ex-partner or family member, regardless of gender or sexuality.  

After sharing all relevant information they have about a victim, the representatives construct a joint risk management plan that provides professional support to all those at risk and that reduces the risk of harm.

The aim of the MARAC is to manage the risk to the adult victim but in doing this it will also consider other family members including any children involved and managing the behaviour of the perpetrator.  Information shared at the MARAC is confidential and is only used for the purpose of reducing the risk of harm to those at risk. 
At the heart of a MARAC is the working assumption that no single agency or individual can see the complete picture of the life of a victim, but all may have insights, knowledge and expertise that are crucial to their safety.

To make a referral to MARAC, please contact your Agency's designated MARAC lead.  If you are not aware of who your MARAC lead is, please contact the Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub via OneCall

If you require further information or advice contact:
Lesley Pyle
Northumberland & North Tyneside Domestic Abuse & Sexual Violence Coordinator
Email: lesley.pyle@northumberland.gov.uk 

The single point of contact for Adult Social Care MARAC referrals is:
safeguardingadults@northumberland.gov.uk
Tel: 01670 536400

The Northumberland and North Tyneside Safeguarding Adults Board Workforce Development subgroup oversee the implementation and delivery of a multi-agency  Safeguarding Adults Training programme.

In Northumberland a range of Safeguarding Adults training courses are delivered on  a multi-agency basis.

For further information and to book a place on Safeguarding Adults training please contact:

For Northumberland County Council and Private/Independent Sector staff:
Tel: 01670 624803
Email: learningandOD@northumberland.gov.uk

For Northumbria Healthcare staff:
Tel: 0191 2031415
Email: trainingdept@northumbria-healthcare.nhs.uk

For advice about Safeguarding Adults training please contact:
Leigh Waller
Tel: 01670 629041
Email: leigh.waller@nhct.nhs.uk

Mental Capacity Act

The Mental Capacity Act (MCA) 2005 applies to everyone involved in the care, treatment and support of people aged 16 and over living in England and Wales who are unable to make all or some decisions for themselves. The MCA is designed to protect and restore power to those vulnerable people who lack capacity. 

The MCA provides the legal framework for making decisions on behalf of people who lack the mental capacity to make decisions themselves. 

For further information please the Mental Capacity Fact sheet 
 

Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards

The Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards apply to vulnerable people in England and Wales, aged 18 or over, who have mental health needs (this includes dementia), who are in hospitals and care homes, and who do not have the mental capacity (ability) to make decisions about their care or treatment. 

If they lack capacity (or are unable) to make these decisions then the law allows decisions to be made in their best interests. To meet the requirements for an assessment under the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards the following criteria must be met: 

1. The person MUST lack capacity to consent to their care or treatment in the care home, hospital or other supported living arrangement. 

2. The person is not free to leave. That means the person is not free to live where they want or with who they want. 

3. The person is under continuous supervision and control. For example: Do staff always need to be aware of where the person is, who they are with and make checks and take action if there is any doubt about this? 

If the above criteria is met, the Local Authority will undertake an assessment. This will be carried out by a Best Interests Assessor and a Specialist Doctor, and will involve speaking to family or friends, or appointing an Independent Mental Capacity Advocate. The assessment will decide how long the authorisation will last (maximum 12 months), and when it will need to re-assessed. The person will be provided with a representative during the period of authorisation, and has the right to challenge through the Court of Protection.

If the above criteria are met and the person is being deprived of their liberty in any other living accommodation, then the Local Authority may need to apply to the Court of Protection to seek their authorisation. If so, then we would need to consult with the person, their carers, relatives and representatives. 

For further advice or information please contact:
DoLS team
Email: DOLSNorthumberland@northumbria-healthcare.nhs.uk
Tel: 01670 629 700

For further information relating to Mental Capacity and the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguarding please see this section of the Safeguarding Adults procedures.

Liberty Protection Safeguards

The Liberty Protection Safeguards (LPS) will replace the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS), and will provide protection for people aged 16 and above who are or who need to be deprived of their liberty in order to enable their care or treatment and lack the mental capacity to consent to their arrangements. The timescale for implementation has not been confirmed.

Click here to see Liberty Protection Safeguards - at a glance.
 

Related guidance

Supporting people living with dementia to be involved in adult safeguarding enquiries