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Safeguarding Adults


Everyone should be able to live their life free from fear and harm. Some people are more at risk of harm because of their age, or mental capacity or disability and are not always able to protect themselves.

The Government is determined that adults with heightened risk of harm should be given the greatest protection possible from harm: Safeguarding means protecting an adult's right to live in safety, free from abuse and neglect.

We want to make you aware of adult abuse and provide you with the information you need to report any abuse you think is happening.

This information has been put together by Hillingdon Council, Health Services and the Police. These organisations are represented on the Hillingdon Safeguarding Adults Board.

Their role is to put in place legislation and to offer guidance on how adult abuse can be prevented and stopped.

Hillingdon council follow the guidelines as per Protecting adults at risk: London multi-agency policy and procedures to safeguard adults from abuse.


Who might be an adult at risk of harm?

An adult at risk of harm is someone who is not able to care for or protect themselves from harm and exploitation. It might be because of their age, mental or physical incapacity, sensory loss, or physical or learning disabilities.

It might be someone who is usually able to manage but is unable to do so because of an accident or illness. They also may be unable to protect themselves from harm or exploitation.

Some may find it hard to get the help and support they need to stop the abuse.

What is abuse and neglect?

The following are examples of abuse and neglect (please remember that this is not an exhaustive list):

Physical - for example, hitting, slapping, burning, pushing, restraining or giving too much medication or the wrong medication.

Psychological - for example, shouting, swearing, frightening, blaming, ignoring or humiliating.

Financial - for example, the illegal or unauthorised use of a person's property, money, pension book or other valuables.

Sexual - for example, forcing a person to take part in any sexual activity without consent.

Neglect - for example, where a person is deprived of food, heat, clothing, comfort or medication.

Discriminatory abuse, including racist, sexist and other forms of harassment.

Domestic abuse - any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over, who are or have been intimate partners or family members, regardless of gender or sexuality.

Organisational abuse - the 'mistreatment or abuse or neglect of an adult at risk by a regime or individuals within settings and services that adults at risk live in or use, that violate the person's dignity, resulting in lack of respect for their human rights'. (Care and Support Statutory Guidance 2014).

Neglect - ignoring medical, emotional or physical care needs.

Act of omission - failure to provide access to appropriate health, care and support or educational services, the withholding of the necessities of life, such as medication, adequate nutrition and heating.

An adult at risk of harm may also neglect themselves or deliberately harm themselves.

Abuse and neglect can happen to anyone, at any time and in any situation

It may:

  • be an act which goes against your human rights
  • be a single act or repeated acts
  • happen in any relationship
  • result in harm
  • take advantage of someone's vulnerability

Report it

If you are concerned that an adult at risk of harm, living in Hillingdon, is being abused, or if the individual experiencing the abuse discloses this to you, reassure them that you are taking them seriously then report it.

You should contact in confidence Hillingdon Social Care Direct.

If however you think a serious crime has taken place or there is a need for an immediate police response to protect the adult at risk, dial 999.

We will take basic details so it is helpful to have the facts to hand. Based on what you tell us we will

  • clarify the circumstances of the alleged abuse or neglect,
  • take any immediate steps to protect the adult at risk,
  • if needed decide what should happen next involve other agencies where necessary, for example the police or health services

Safeguarding Board

Hillingdon Safeguarding Adults Board

Hillingdon Safeguarding Adults Board (SAB) is a multi-agency partnership comprising statutory, independent and charitable organisations. The Board's objective is to protect and promote individual human rights, independence and improve wellbeing, so that adults at risk stay safe and are protected at all times from abuse, neglect, discrimination, or poor treatment.

The Role of the board is to:

  • Lead the strategic development of safeguarding adults work in the borough of Hillingdon
  • Agree resources for the delivery of the safeguarding strategic plan
  • Monitor and ensure the effectiveness of the sub-groups in delivering their work programmes and partner agencies in discharging their safeguarding responsibilities
  • Ensure that arrangements across partnership agencies in Hillingdon are effective in providing a net of safety for vulnerable adults
  • Act as champions for safeguarding issues across their own organisations, partners and the wider community, including effective arrangements within their own organisations
  • Ensure best practice is consistently employed to improve outcomes for vulnerable adults

From April 2015, production of an annual report became a statutory requirement under The Care Act 2014. Prior to this, and in accordance with good practice, an annual report had been produced in previous years and presented to Council Cabinet, the Health & Wellbeing Board, and the Community Safety Partnership.

The Annual Report for 2018-19 is published on the Hillingdon Safeguarding Adults Board website.

Safe Places Scheme

The Safe Places Scheme in Hillingdon aims to keep people at risk of harm safe.

People who join the scheme carry a card with details of who they need to be contacted if they need help.

Shops, services and businesses who are part of the scheme will display a sticker in their window and people can go into these locations and ask for help if they feel vulnerable, scared or at risk, whilst they are out and about in the community.

The Disabled Association Hillingdon (DASH) have set up this scheme and more information can be found on their website

Last reviewed: 18/09/2018

Useful links


While every care has been taken in the compilation of the information on this website, neither Hillingdon Council or PCG Care Solutions will be held responsible for any loss, damage or inconvenience caused as a result of using the site and any inaccuracies/errors within these pages.

If you choose to purchase services via the Marketplace, you are advised to refer to the Buyers Guide prior to making a purchase, as well as making your own enquiries and seeking independent advice. This is applicable to Adult services only, as there is no Marketplace for Children's services.