Campaign to help protect adults at risk

A new campaign is aiming to raise awareness of the abuse and harm that can be suffered by adults at risk of harm.

A series of events are taking place next week – June 15 to 20 – to make Safeguarding Adults for Everyone Week (SAFE).

Adults at risk of harm may be unable to take care of themselves and protect themselves from harm or exploitation because they are disabled, have mental health problems, or are frail, elderly or ill.

The events planned include a community walk and picnic, coffee and cake mornings, a Big Tea Dance and a major conference for safeguarding professionals.

Mayor Norma Redfearn said: “Every adult has the right to be treated with dignity, have their choices respected and live a life free from fear.

“Sadly some of the more vulnerable adults in our community face the risk of being abused.

“I know a lot of good work is being carried out in North Tyneside and safeguarding vulnerable adults is one of our top priorities. We all have a responsibility to look out for those who are more vulnerable and we need to report any concerns we may have.

“The message from SAFE week is simple: Safeguarding is everyone’s business.”

SAFE week is a joint initiative between North Tyneside, Newcastle and Northumberland councils in partnership with health, Northumbria Police, and voluntary and private agencies.

Abuse takes many forms, there is no easy way to identify signs of abuse, but some of the signs may be:

• Multiple bruising or finger marks;

• Injuries the person cannot give a good reason for;

• Deterioration of health for no apparent reason;

• Loss of weight;

• Inappropriate or inadequate clothing;

• Withdrawal or changes in usual behaviour;

• A person who is unwilling to be alone with a particular carer; or

• Unexplained shortage of money.

Anyone concerned that a vulnerable adult is being abused should contact North Tyneside Council Adult Social Care Gateway Team on (0191) 643 2777 or out of hours on (0191) 200 6800.