Safeguarding adult policy

Values and Principles

The purpose of this policy is to set out the council’s approach to safeguarding adults and promoting their welfare. It provides a strategic framework for the procedures which the council has adopted to ensure that we deliver on our commitment in a consistent way across the organisation.

Our approach to safeguarding adults links to our corporate priorities, which includes a commitment to maintain a safe and healthy community, to be achieved by

  • Working with partners to keep people safe
  • Helping to improve and maintain the health and wellbeing of residents

The council has a set of core values. Our values demonstrate what is important to us in our dealings with residents, businesses, partners and employees.

2.1. Our Values

Integrity: We will be honest, clear and consistent about what we do

Transparency: We will be approachable, accountable and transparent in the way we communicate and conduct our business

Respect: We will have respect for residents, businesses, partners and employees

Fairness: We will fair in our policies and decision making, listening to the views and feedback we receive

2.2. The six principles of safeguarding

This policy is based on six principles, which together drive our approach to safeguarding. These are:

  1. Empowerment – presumption of person-led decisions and informed consent.
  2. Prevention – it is better to take action before harm occurs.
  3. Proportionality – proportionate and least intrusive response appropriate to the risk presented.
  4. Protection – support and representation for those in greatest need.
  5. Partnership – local solutions through services working with their communities, who have a part to play in preventing, detecting and reporting neglect and abuse.
  6. Accountability – responsibility and transparency in delivering safeguarding.

For adults at risk of abuse and neglect this means that they will:

  • be asked about what outcomes they want from the safeguarding process and these outcomes directly inform the action taken as appropriate;
  • receive simple and clear information about what abuse is, how to recognise the signs and where to seek help and support;
  • be assured that professionals are working in their interest and will only get involved when needed;
  • receive help and support to report abuse and neglect and that they can take part freely, as much as they want, in the safeguarding process;
  • know and understand that professionals will work together to get the best result to support them;
  • understand the role of everyone supporting them.

Our council is an extended partner of the Hertfordshire Safeguarding Adults Board (HSAB). Our Safeguarding Adults at Risk Policy has been developed in line with the HSAB County wide guidance, Safeguarding Adults at Risk: The multi-agency policy, procedure and practice for working with adults at risk of abuse and neglect in Hertfordshire 2017.

2.3. Making safeguarding personal

Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council will always aim to make safeguarding personal so that it is person led and outcome focused. This will be done by engaging the adult at risk in the decision making process to improve their quality of life, wellbeing and safety.

We provide a range of support services to adults. To ensure adults at risk are safeguarded, we will actively seek to make communities safer by identifying and responding to any signs of abuse, neglect and suspected criminal offences.

The council will also work with adults at risk of abuse and neglect to ensure they are aware of the support options available to them, taking care to consult with them fully before any action is taken. The only situation where consultation will not take place is where reasonable justification is evidenced to suggest that the adult may not have the personal capacity to make any decisions or actions in their own best interest.

We will also ensure that any support offered is carried out in partnership with relevant agencies and that a collective approach is taken to provide this.

The core aims of developing a culture of safeguarding adults is to prevent abuse and neglect wherever possible, whilst promoting an approach that focuses on improving life for the adults concerned. To do this, awareness must be raised so that communities, alongside professionals, play their part in preventing, recognising and responding to abuse and neglect.