All citizens and organizations have a role to play in protecting vulnerable adults from abuse, wherever and whenever it occurs. The approach is to maintain an appropriate balance between the promotion of independence and the safeguarding of vulnerable adults. In the CASSIS Protection of Vulnerable Adults Monitoring Report for 2008 – 2009, there were 4,451 alleged cases of abuse of vulnerable adults, reported across Wales. These figures represented a 5% increase on cases reported In the previous year.
With the common cities of alleged abuse being older women, the next largest category of abuse was individuals with learning disabilities. For many vulnerable adults their abusers are closer to home and may be loved ones, or individuals into whose care they have been entrusted. As in relation to safeguarding, those working in the care sector have a key role to play In the safeguarding/protection of vulnerable adults. However the understanding of who may be a vulnerable adult and what constitutes a safeguarding issue can be less clear. In 2002, strategic guidance was issued to authorities in Wales, called ‘In Safe Hands’.
This established the national framework for the development of local policies/procedures and guidance for the protection of vulnerable adults. In Wales the guidance was issued under section 7 of the Local Social Services Act 1970, establishing the framework for these local policies and procedures. Therefore providing the basis for social services departments in Wales, to co-ordinate a process of local policy development. To prevent, Identify, respond to and ameliorate action against perpetrators of abuse. Four regional forums were formed in Wales, following the publication of ‘In Safe Hands’.
Each region developed its own regional adult protection policy and procedures in line with the national guidance. The four regions have played the key role in the developing, agreeing and implementing the policies and procedures. The four for a areas In Wales are:- * North Wales forum * Defy Posy forum * South Wales forum * Gwenn region The functions of the for a are to:- * Co-ordinate Adult Protection policies within the region * Promote shared understanding and practice for all agencies within the region * Contribute to all Wales understanding of OVA practice Promote a joined up approach to training
Within the for a there are representations from statutory organizations such as local authorities, health boards and the police service. The forms may also include representation from the fire service, Wales Ambulance Service, INS Trusts and the independent sector, such as a care provider organization and the (voluntary) sector. The regulatory and national Mullen standards regimes, regarding OVA, that were effectively. From the 26th July 2004, providers of care and employment, agencies and businesses, will be able to request checks against the OVA list, as part of an application for a Criminal Record Bureau (CRY) Disclosure.
In respect of individuals, being considered for care positions. Checks against a OVA list can only be made via the CRY as part of a disclosure under the Police Act 1997. If the disclosure check reveals that the individual is on the OVA list, or is provisionally on the OVA list, the CRY will advise the employer that the person may not be employed in a position of care. The Safeguarding Vulnerable Adults Group Act 2006 was introduced following the findings of the Bighead inquiry into the Sham murders. The act introduced a vetting and barring scheme for people working with children, whereby a new
Independent Safeguarding Authority must maintain lists of people who are barred from certain kinds of work with children and adults. That list includes those who are convicted of or admit to, certain specified criminal offences, including various sexual Offences, and those involving violence or the mistreatment of children. Once barred the restrictions last from a minimum of 1 too maximum of 10 years. Following the death of Victoria Climb at London in 2002, where she had been tortured and murdered by her guardians which led to a public inquiry and produced major changes in Child Protection Policies.
The public inquiry headed by Lord Laming, discovered numerous instances where Climb could have been saved and also that many organizations in Climbers case were badly run. The subsequent report by Laming made numerous recommendations related to child protection. Climbers death was largely responsible for the formation of the Every Child Matters initiative, the introduction of the Children’s Act 2004, the creation of the Contact Point project, a government database designed to hold information on all children, and the creation of the office of the Children’s Commissioner for England.
Changes to working practices were made following the findings in the, Vanessa George case. Where, children suffered sexual abuse at the Little Tees Nursery in Plymouth. Jim Gould, the chairman of the Plymouth Safeguarding Children Board, called for the government to introduce legislation to ‘strengthen accountability frameworks for nurseries’. A review of the George case found poor regulation, inadequate training, and a lack of supervision at the nursery. Members of the Plymouth Safeguarding Children Board, Inch carried out the review, strongly criticized the regulator Offset for not picking
Jp concerns on how the structure of the nursery was being run. Rhea Protection of Vulnerable Adults (OVA) Scheme was set out in the Care Standards Act 2000. At the heart of the scheme is the OVA List. From 2004 providers of care and employment agencies and businesses to such providers will be able to request regular checks against the OVA List as part of an application for a Criminal Records urea (CRY) Disclosure with respect to individuals being considered for care positions. The aim of the OVA Scheme is to significantly enhance the level of protection for vulnerable adults.
The presence of the ‘alienable adult, their relatives or advocates at this stage may compromise an investigation. If the strategy meeting confirms or decides there is to be a non- rimming investigation, it must then agree the remit for the investigation, including appointing the investigators. The lead investigator should be either a social worker from the local authority or a health professional employed by an INS body. Support Investigators may be from the CASSIS or the local authority. The care manager should not be an investigator. They must not have supervisory or management responsibility for the alleged perpetrator.
If to do so would compromise their position or would lead to the objectivity of any subsequent investigation being questioned. The role of the * Gather all information specific to the allegation being investigated * Record all interviews and ensure interview records are signed * Examine, and where appropriate retain or copy all relevant policies/documentation. * Evaluate the Information gathered, prepare a written report and make recommendations on findings * Maintain a running record of the investigation process giving details of all contacts and actions undertaken in relation to the investigation.
The final decision about the status of the allegation will then be made by the reconvened strategy eating. As of July 2004 it is a statutory requirement on providers of care and employment agencies and businesses that supply individuals to these providers, to refer care workers and individuals supplied to care positions to the Secretary of State. In deciding whether an individual should be referred for inclusion on the OVA List, providers of care must decide whether, in their view, the individual has been guilty of misconduct which has harmed or placed at risk of harm a vulnerable adult.
Individuals that have been suspended on the grounds that they may have caused arm to a vulnerable adult, but before decisions have been made to dismiss him or permanently transfer him to a non-care position, should also be referred to the OVA List. A person’s name may be removed from the OVA List if the provider confirms to the OVA team that the allegations against the suspended worker are clearly and fairly shown to be groundless. At Snowman Care Centre a step by step guide to follow procedures in the case of any suspected, alleged or actual abuse is as follows: Ensure the safety of the resident. * Get assistance from other staff.
Use the emergency call bell if required. Inform the senior career/manager immediately. * Make written notes of times and the events that took place. * Seek medical advice if required. * Inform the social worker in the placing authority. * Inform the police if required. * Inform the next of kin. * Monitor and supervise the resident to prevent further incidents occurring. Record all details in Care Plans/SEC. * Complete accident report form if required. * Complete VIA form and send it to Adult Protection Team, Kevin McCarthy. Complete and fax Regulation 38 form to CASSIS. * Review care plans, sign and date accordingly.