Everybody has the right to be safe, no matter who they are or what their circumstance.
Safeguarding is about protecting children, young people and vulnerable adults from abuse or neglect. We are all responsible for the safety of children, young people and vulnerable adults and must ensure that we are doing all we can to protect the most vulnerable members of our society.
The surgery has safeguarding policies to ensure the safety of all our patients and our staff are trained to identify when people may be at risk. Our Practice safeguarding lead is Dr hergeven Dosanjh, who oversees the Practice policies and protocols on safeguarding.
We work closely with Coventry County Council and the various statutory bodies that co-ordinate safeguarding matters.
Would you know what to do if a child was being harmed or neglected?
This section is for anyone who may be concerned that a child may be at risk of abuse or neglect, and information for support and advice.
Who is responsible for looking after a child’s welfare?
The simple answer is everyone. It is all our responsibility to protect children.
All children have a right to grow up in a caring and safe environment. All adults have a responsibility to protect children, including;
- Family members
- Members of the public
What is child abuse?
There are different types of abuse. For example;
- Physical injury – being hit, kicked and punched
- Physical neglect – not being properly fed or clothed and poor hygiene
- Sexual abuse – inappropriate sexual behaviour , language,indecent assault or sexual activity
- Emotional abuse – constantly criticised, ignored, humiliated and exposed to family violence
How can you tell if a child is being abused or neglected?
Children rarely tell if they are being abused. However there may be signs that concern you, that may be an indication of a child being abused or neglected. The child may;
- Appear afraid, quiet or withdrawn
- Have unexplained bruising or bruising in an unusual place
- Appear afraid to go home
- Appear hungry, tired or unkempt
- Be left unattended or unsupervised
- Have too much responsibility for their age
- Be acting in a sexually inappropriate way
- Be misusing drugs or alcohol
The adult may be;
- Acting in a violent or sexual manner towards a child
- Misusing drink or drugs while caring for a child
- Verbally abusive towards a child
What to do if you are concerned?
If you are concerned about a child, speak to someone. This might be a health visitor, nursery or school staff, a teacher, a police officer, a social worker or a doctor.
Make sure you;
- Do not interrogate the child
- Act promptly
- Note down your concerns with dates and times
- Give as much information as you know about the child and family
Would you know what to do if a vunerable adult was being harmed or neglected?
This section is to highlight to people what abuse is, how it can be identified and reported to ensure people get the help they need to stay safe and independent
What is abuse?
Abuse is behaviour towards a person that deliberately or unintentionally causes harm. It is a disregard of a person’s human rights and in the worse case can endanger life.
Abuse can be physical, sexual, financial, psychological, institutional, neglectful or discriminatory.
What are the signs of abuse?
General signs that someone has been or is being abused include;
- Unexplained injury / repeated visits to a GP or the Accident and Emergency Department of a hospital
- Signs of distress
- Withdrawal or isolation
- Unexplained pregnancy or sexually transmitted disease
- Self neglect or basic physical and emotional needs not being met by others
- Not able to pay bills or buy food even though enough money appears to be available.
Which adults are at risk of abuse?
‘Adults at risk’ are people aged 18 years and over. They may;
- Rely on other people or services to care for them or support them with day to day tasks, may be because of their age, a physical or learning disability, other physical or mental health need or involvement in substance misuse.
- Lack mental capacity.
- Not be able to speak up for themselves.
Where might abuse happen?
Abuse can happen anywhere; in people’s own homes, public places, day centres, residential homes, hospitals, GP surgeries, colleges, police stations and prisons.
Anyone can be an abused including, professionals, volunteers, trades people, family members, carers, partners, friends and neighbours.
How to report it?
If you see or hear something that concerns you and you suspect that abuse may be happening, or someone tells you that they have been abused, they should telephone Coventry City Council ‘Safeguarding Adults’ Team;
Tel: 024 7683 3800 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Adult abuse and neglect is everyone’s business. If you suspect a vulnerable adult is being abused or neglected please call or email the above contacts for advice and information.