We all have the fundamental right to live our lives in safety and free from harm and abuse
We all have the fundamental right to live our lives in safety and free from harm and abuse. Safeguarding those who are vulnerable is a complex issue, how do we protect them without violating their rights to make the choices and decisions which allow them to develop, thrive and maintain a meaningful life in which their wellbeing is the number one objective? Safeguarding means protecting an individual from ill-treatment and abuse, preventing impairment of health or development due to the individual’s vulnerability and ensuring the environment of the individual is consistent in providing safe effective care that promotes personal development and wellbeing. Protection is a big part of the safeguarding process but in comparison refers directly to the specific activity that protects a person that is or is likely to suffer harm. If all agencies/partners work together to safeguard effectively then the need to protect from harm should be greatly reduced. Safeguarding is the duty of everyone involved, protection is statutory. Just because someone is vulnerable it does not mean they shouldn’t have the right to make choices and take risks, however the capacity to understand the implications or consequences of any choices made by a vulnerable person must be taken into consideration. If it is felt that a person does not have the capacity to understand an action or decision they want to take, then the decision may need to be made for them as to what is in their best interest. No single person should decide what is in the best interest of the vulnerable person it should be a multi-agency decision involving all parties and advocates. Each decision or choice must be considered individually, just because a vulnerable person is deemed not to understand the implications of one decision does not necessarily mean they won’t understand the implications of another. The ‘No secrets’ guidelines was issued by the Department Health under section 7 of the
2. Explain the legislative framework for safeguarding vulnerable adults
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We have a legal framework whose laws and guidelines have a direct impact on policies and procedures set out to protect vulnerable children and adults. Children are protected from abuse by The Children’s Act of 1989 and applies to children and young adults up to the age of eighteen. Safeguarding vulnerable people is a complex issue needing frequent reviewing to ensure legislation remains effective and current, for example over the past few years we have seen the rapid growth of the internet and social media leading to new risks and threats to vulnerable children and adults. These risks are not exclusive to vulnerable persons but have led to the EU General Data Protection Regulation which comes into force on 25th May 2018 and the UK Data Protection Bill which is before parliament now with a view to being passed in 2018.