The management and trustees of Daddys With Angels recognises that the protection and safety of vulnerable adults is everyone’s responsibility. Daddys With Angels defines a vulnerable adult based on the Law Commission’s definition – that a person who: ‘is or may be in need of community care services by reason of mental or other disability, age or illness; and who is or may be unable to take care of him or herself against significant harm or exploitation.’
In clarifying this further, Daddys With Angels adopts the Department of Health’s guidance in that an ‘adult’ refers to a person aged 18 years and over and that people with learning difficulties, mental health problems, older people and people with a disability or impairment will be included within this definition, particularly when their situation is complicated by additional factors, such as physical frailty or chronic illness, sensory impairment, challenging behaviour, drug or alcohol problems, social or emotional problems, poverty or homelessness.
This policy, the related procedures and the Code of Good Practice which follow establishes the roles and responsibilities of staff, in relation to the protection of vulnerable adults, with whom their work brings them into contact.
In relation to vulnerable adults, the approach Daddys With Angels will take is based on, and reflects, the principles of relevant legislation and guidance relating to the protection of vulnerable adults.
- The welfare of the vulnerable adult is paramount consideration
- All vulnerable adults, regardless of age, disability, gender, racial or ethnic origin, religious belief and sexual orientation have a right to protection from harm or abuse
The trustees are responsible for the protection of vulnerable adults within Daddys With Angels. They have designated the Director to oversee this on their behalf. This will include ensuring the implementation and monitoring of this policy.
In relation to recruitment and selection of staff, this will also include ensuring that all criminal disclosures are made regardless of when they were committed or whether they were of major or minor consequence including spent convictions under the rehabilitation of Offenders Act, and references taken which refer to candidates’ suitability to work/have contact with vulnerable adults.
It is also the responsibility of the trustees of Daddys With Angels, to ensure that all staff for whom they are responsible, are aware of and understand the importance of implementing this policy and the related procedures and code of good practice.
The board of trustees recognises that if vulnerable adults are to be truly protected it is essential that everyone working with vulnerable adults contributes to the work of those with direct responsibility for the protection of vulnerable adults. The procedures that follow recognise and are consistent with that objective and have been designed to complement Local Authority procedures.
As a responsible body, we cannot and should not restrict our sense of duty to those vulnerable adults we identify as our service users. Staff, through their work, comes into contact with a number of vulnerable adults each and every year. By being vigilant and acting where concerns exist, we can play an important part in their protection.
In operating this policy, staff must also be aware that, in order to protect vulnerable adults, in some circumstances it will be necessary to share what might normally be regarded as confidential information. The following principles should be adhered to:
- Information will only be shared on a need to know basis
- Information will only be shared when it is in the best interests of the service users
- Confidentiality must not be confused with secrecy
- Informed consent should be obtained but if this is not possible and other vulnerable adults are at risk it may be necessary to override it.
Guidance in the form of a vulnerable adults protection procedure has also been developed to provide staff with ideas which not only will help to protect vulnerable adults, but will also help to identify any practices which could mistakenly interpreted and perhaps lead to false allegations of abuse. Staff should familiarise themselves with this and if it is necessary to carry out practices contrary to it, only do so after discussion with, and the approval of, the director.
Remember, the first priority should always be to ensure the safety and protection of vulnerable adults and that is I s the responsibility of all staff to act on any suspicion or evidence of abuse or neglect.
End of Vulnerable Adults Protection Policy.