As part of the Government’s ‘Making sure the Care Act works’ consultation, an event was recently held in Leeds bringing together key professionals across the city to discuss various elements relating to safeguarding adults.
We asked Dr Paul Kingston, independent chair of the Leeds Safeguarding Board to talk to us about the event.
This is quite timely with the recent launch of a safeguarding adults campaign in Leeds.
The event was on the safeguarding adult’s elements of the draft Care and Support Statutory Guidance, issued to accompany the Care Act 2014.
So Paul, the Care Act is explained by a lot of draft guidance, did your event cover the whole act?
It is most definitely a big document, with over 400 pages of draft statutory guidance, so there was a lot of material to go through. The consultation only requested responses to six specific questions on the safeguarding adult’s chapter, but we wanted to consider all the main references to safeguarding, of which there are many throughout the report.
What were the key topics you discussed?
We talked about the new statutory basis for Safeguarding Adults Boards (SABs), who should be members of SABs, the objectives and functions of SABs.
We also discussed the requirement to undertake safeguarding adults reviews when an adult at risk has died or been seriously injured, and abuse or neglect is suspected or known to have contributed to this.
Safeguarding adults reviews (SARs) replace serious case reviews and learning the lessons reviews. SARs are not a “one size fits all”, but SAR is a single term to cover a range of approaches. They are not about apportioning blame, but about learning to prevent it happening again.
We discussed how people think the lessons can best be disseminated to partner organisations and to front line staff.
Are there any challenges that the safeguarding board might face when bringing in the new changes?
In addition to the guidance on Boards and Safeguarding Adults Reviews, we discussed the challenges and the cultural changes required to put the new guidance on safeguarding and protection from abuse and neglect into practice. Some of these include:
- The duty to promoting wellbeing, including protecting people from abuse or neglect, whenever the local authority (Adult Social Care) interacts with anyone in the course of its work under Part 1 of the Care Act 2014.
- Always establishing the outcomes the person wants right at the beginning of the episode, and then focusing on them throughout, and checking if these outcomes have been achieved regardless of process.
- Making sure that the new Adult Social Care information and advice service requirements include safeguarding adults, as required.
- The implications of the duty to make enquiries, or cause them to be made, how safeguarding enquiries will fit with needs and carers assessments, the fact that all enquiry outcomes are to be notified back to the local authority, and the requirement for the local authority to determine with the adult what, if any, further action is necessary and acceptable.
- The duty for the local authority to arrange an independent advocate or appropriate person and the task of representing someone throughout assessment, care planning, review and safeguarding processes. The fact that the guidance expects the role of an Independent Mental Capacity Advocate (IMCA) to include representation and support, where necessary, rather than a second advocate being arranged.
- The new duty of the local authority and partners to cooperate and the duty to supply information, as requested by the Safeguarding Adults Board in safeguarding enquiries and safeguarding adults reviews, and what would help with this.
- We also discussed exploitation and grooming, and whether it was helpful to have exploitation identified as a separate category of abuse.
Finally, did you find the event useful?
Absolutely, the event was really useful. Being able to combine the thoughts and discussions of a good number of professionals involved with safeguarding across the city has given us lots of great ideas to inform our consultation response to the government, on behalf of the Leeds Safeguarding Adults Board.