Safeguarding adults

Some adults aged eighteen and over due to age, disability, illness or lifestyle may not be able to protect themselves against significant harm or exploitation.

Every day, abuse of adults at risk goes unreported. Local authorities, police and NHS agencies involved with adults who might be at risk of abuse have a duty of care to make sure that procedures are in place to encourage reporting of suspected abuse, and take action to stop the abuse.

Identifying abuse

Abuse occurs when someone’s human and civil rights are violated by someone else. This can be:

  • a single or series of actions of abuse
  • deliberately or unknowingly causing harm
  • failure to protect people from abuse

Anyone can abuse and often it can be the person you least expect. Abusers could include:

  • spouse/partner
  • carers and care workers
  • family member/relative
  • friend
  • neighbour
  • volunteer helper
  • someone not known to the person

Things to look out for:

  • possible changes in the person's behaviour or mood/personality
  • unexplained injury or a series of injuries
  • signs of fear or distress
  • signs of neglect
  • theft, fraud or unexplained financial worries

Who to tell

Reporting abuse on line

You can use our safeguarding adults alert form to report any suspected abuse on line.

If you are a professional and suspect abuse use the safeguarding alert form for professionals.

Adult Social Care Services

Telephone 0300 123 6721

Lancashire Police

Telephone 0845 1 25 35 45

Health or social care staff

For example, a social worker, nurse, doctor, occupational therapist

You can also tell someone you trust. Ask them to report the matter for you.

If you are in immediate danger or you think a criminal act is being committed contact the police by calling 999.

What you can expect to happen next

If you tell health or social care staff, they will:

  • take your concerns seriously
  • make sure that the person is safe
  • help the person to get medical treatment, if needed
  • involve the police if a crime is suspected
  • involve other staff to investigate and protect the person being abused

When you report a suspected abuse, you do not have to give your name, but if you do, it will not be given to the people involved.

All suspected incidents of abuse will be investigated fully and appropriately.