Whether you work in a school, care home, a hospital, a nursery or other sectors, those working in the care and the education sector have a responsibility to help protect vulnerable individuals. Employers should ensure that all employees have the right training to carry out their safeguarding duties.
What is Safeguarding?
Safeguarding can be defined as protecting vulnerable individuals from abuse, neglect or any form of harm. Harm can come from adults, other children or people working closely with these vulnerable individuals.
A child is defined as anyone who is below the age of 18. This type of safeguarding is protecting them from abuse, maltreatment or exploitation, as well as preventing any harm to their health or ability to develop. Individuals caring for children should also make sure they have safe and effective care and effective outcomes in life.
Safeguarding a child means you are identifying and protecting them from harm.
A vulnerable adult is someone who is above the age of 18 and is unable to care for themselves and not able to protect themselves from harm. One of the differences with safeguarding adults is that while preventing them from risk abuse of neglect, they also need support maintaining control of their own lives.
Do I need a Safeguarding policy?
If you or your employees work with vulnerable adults or vulnerable children then the answer is yes. Policies should be put into practice, reviewed annually (or more frequently) and available to the public.
The Care Act 2014 instructs local services like councils, the NHS & the police to work together to make policies to protect adults.
The Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 also requires anyone working with vulnerable groups of people to go through a vetting process to check for any previous criminal convictions.
The Children’s Act 2008 allows local authorities and other organisations to better regulate interventions in the interest of vulnerable children.
Safeguarding Policies should:
- Demonstrate ownership of the safeguarding agenda
- Maintain and review a record of concerns
- Follow safe recruitment procedures, including DBS checks (by the Disclosure and Barring Service)
- Maintain safe premises and equipment, inside and out
- Make sure that all staff are aware of their responsibilities
- Report concerns promptly
- Be alert to the signs and symptoms of abuse
- Make provision for whistleblowing
- Tell staff you have an open door policy
- Cooperate with investigations by Adult Social Care
- Support any protection plan put in place
What should be in a Safeguarding Policy?
The NSPCC set out an 'example of a safeguarding policy statement’ this includes:
- The purpose & scope of the policy in a statement
- Legal framework
- What you believe
- What you recognise
- How you will seek to keep children & young people safe
- Any related policies & procedures
- Contact details for anyone who wants to report an incident
Safeguarding policies may also include:
- What you can do if there is an incident, allegation or concerns are raised
- Definitions of abuse, harm and neglect
- Disciplinary procedures that are in place when an incident happens or allegations are made
- How you record incident s & allegations and any disciplinary procedures that will be taken if they are not carried out
- Who is responsible for recording the above
- Do’s and don’t’s as advice to employees
What are the benefits of Safeguarding Training?
This Safeguarding Children Training Course for anyone working with children. This course covers the 4 R’s of protecting children. This course will also help you recognise signs of neglect, discomfort and abuse. As well as, knowing the correct procedure when responding to signs/reports of abuse and how to record them.
Safeguarding Vulnerable Adults
Our SOVA Course defines which adults need protecting and who is most at risk. It also defines the different forms of abuse and how to deal with abuse.
Whether you work with vulnerable adults or children, you have a responsibility as part of your job role to ensure that they do not come to harm, neglect or abuse. If you think that you or your employees could benefit from Safeguarding Training then get in touch and get started with a free trial today.