Adult safeguarding

Adult safeguarding is the term used to describe the function of protecting adults, aged 18 or over who appear to have health and social care needs, from abuse or neglect. There are 10 main categories of abuse, which are:

  • physical
  • sexual
  • psychological or emotional
  • financial or material
  • discriminatory
  • neglect and acts of omission
  • organisational or institutional
  • domestic violence
  • modern slavery
  • self-neglect.

If you are worried about someone being abused or neglected, please say something.

Contact us to report your concerns

Adult safeguarding is shared across a range of public services, but we have the key responsibility for it. An adult at risk may be a person who:

  • is elderly and frail due to ill health, physical disability, or cognitive impairment
  • has a learning disability
  • has a physical disability and/or sensory impairment
  • has mental health needs
  • has a long-term illness or condition
  • misuses substances or alcohol
  • is a carer such as family members and friends
  • is unable to demonstrate the capacity to make a decision and is in need of care and support.

Adults can be more at risk of abuse when they live:

  • alone
  • have care and support needs
  • depend on others, for example to manage their money
  • find it difficult to communicate.

Abuse can occur in a variety of different settings, some examples are:

  • care homes
  • public places
  • day centres
  • the adult's home
  • hospitals.

Anyone can be an abuser, it could be a:

  • friend
  • family member
  • volunteer
  • neighbour
  • care worker.

If you are a professional working with adults there are adult safeguarding forms to support you.

Kent and Medway Safeguarding Adults Board (KMSAB)

The Kent and Medway Safeguarding Adults Board (KMSAB) exists to make sure that all member agencies are working together to help keep Kent and Medway's adults safe from harm and protect their rights. The local adult safeguarding system seeks to prevent abuse and neglect and stop it quickly when it happens.

Visit the KMSAB website for more information about the board.