Agenda item

Safeguarding Update


The Board considered a report of the Strategic Director, Communities, which gave Members an update regarding the safeguarding work being undertaken across the Borough.


The Board was advised of the following areas:-


·             The Care Act 2014 had been heralded as ‘an historic piece of legislation that would make a difference to some of the most vulnerable people in society for many years to come’.  The Act aimed to put adult safeguarding on a statutory footing.  The Board noted the main areas of safeguarding adults responsibilities contained within the Act and an action plan had been developed to ensure that Halton was compliant which HSAB would monitor progress;


·             Safeguarding Adults Board were required to produce an annual report, which summarised all of the key achievements and priorities which they had been working towards over the previous year.  In Halton this as an activity that had been undertaken annually and the Annual Report 2012/2013 had been published.  The Board noted the four key priorities which the Annual Report had focussed on;


·             An updated Inter-Agency Policy, Procedure and Good Practice Guidance had been produced by the Integrated Adults Safeguarding Unit, in conjunction with members of Halton Safeguarding Adults Board.  The document provided all agencies involved with safeguarding in Halton, with a practical and informative policy, which would ensure that procedures between statutory agencies were consistent across the whole of Halton;


·             The Safe in Town project and Halton Speak Out had been awarded almost £5k from the Cheshire Police and Crime Commissioner, which was subsequently match funded by the Halton Clinical Commissioning Group earlier in the year.  This funding was agreed on the principle that the types of beneficiaries and premises signed up to the scheme would widen; and


·             The Board noted that the Annual Report set out in Appendix 1 to the report described how organisations and individuals across all sectors were working together to safeguard vulnerable people.


The following comments arose from the discussion:-


·             the Board noted the new offence for providers of supplying false or misleading information regarding information that they were legally obliged to provide.  However, it was noted that this situation had not been an issue in Halton;


·             the importance of unannounced visits to care homes and at key times was noted. Clarity was also sought on the latest time that a visit would be undertaken.  In response, It was reported that visits were undertaken outside of normal working hours and if an alert had been raised it would depend on the type of alert i.e. if it was in relation to night staff, a late night or early morning visit would take place;


·             it was reported that there had been an increase in the number of alerts raised by care staff which highlighted that training and awareness raising was proving to be successful;


·             it was noted that individuals could report their concerns anonymously;


·             it was noted that Halton were taking part in a making safe project which would gather information of the service users experience of the safeguarding process; and


·             it was noted that it was rare in Halton to have safeguarding issues in relation to direct payments.  However, it was also noted that financial abuse from family members and friends was on the increase. 


RESOLVED: That the report and comments raised be noted.



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