Safeguarding Policy for Adults

Policy Statement

Kehillat Kernow (KK) is a vibrant and growing community which values the relationships which are nurtured here through our inclusive programme of services and educational/social activities for all ages. Safeguarding is part of these relationships,

KK fully recognizes the responsibility and duty placed upon them to safeguard and promote the welfare of children, young people, and adults in the community and beyond. We are committed to building a ‘culture of safety’ in which children and vulnerable adults are protected from abuse and harm in all areas of our service delivery.

KK will ensure that safeguarding practice reflects statutory responsibilities and government guidance and complies with best practice. As we are a volunteer-based community with no employees, our community members have a full and active part to play in protecting children, young people, and vulnerable adults from harm.  Our Council takes an active lead in promoting awareness and training across our lay leadership.

Our Safeguarding Lead who co-ordinates adult protection issues for Kehillat Kernow services and events is: " class="broken_link">Rachel Chatfield, 07786 176821.

Rachel is a Clinical Psychologist with professional experience of safeguarding. She holds an Enhanced DBS and is employed by Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust. She is a chartered member of the British Psychological Society and Registered with the Health and Care Professionals Council.  She has experience of safeguarding within her professional career.

Context – Safeguarding duties:

Section 42 Care Act, 2014 states that Safeguarding duties apply if:

An adult (18+)

  1. Has needs for care and support (whether or not the Local Authority is meeting those needs)
  2. Is experiencing, or is at risk of, abuse or neglect, and
  3. As a result of those needs is unable to protect himself or herself against the abuse or neglect or the risk of it. Abusive acts between adults (over 18) who do not have care and support needs should be addressed via the Criminal Justice System and are outside the remit of this policy. 


Kehillat Kernow adheres to the Key Principles of the Care Act, 2014, as follows:

  1. Empowerment:  People being supported and encouraged to make their own decisions and informed consent
  2. Prevention: It is better to take action before harm occurs.
  3. Proportionality: The least intrusive response appropriate to the risk presented.
  4. Protection, support, and representation for those in greatest need.
  5. Partnership:  Local solutions through services working with their communities. Communities have a part to play in preventing, detecting, and reporting neglect and abuse.
  6. Accountability and transparency in safeguarding practice.

Adult Abuse:

There is no overarching definition of abuse or neglect. Statutory guidance notes that ‘local authorities should not limit their view of what constitutes abuse or neglect, as they can take many forms and the circumstances of the individual case should always be considered.’ (Types of Adult Abuse or Neglect (from Age UK, Fact Sheet 78, January 2019)

Adults with care and support needs can be abused in any section of our society. Abuse occurs in all ethnic, religious, and regional groups and in all classes. Adults with care and support needs may be abused by family members, family friends, peers, community members, professionals, and carers and by strangers. There are many different types and indicators of abuse, which are outlined below.

Financial abuse

Includes having money or property stolen; being defrauded or ‘scammed’; being put under pressure in relation to money or other property; or having money or other property misused.

Things to look out for include: changes in living conditions; lack of heating; clothing or food; inability to pay bills or unexplained money shortages. Other indicators include unexplained withdrawals from an account: unexplained loss of or misplaced financial documents: recent addition of authorised signers on a signature card; or sudden or unexpected changes in a will or other financial documents. There may, of course, be other explanations for any of these indicators. If you are concerned about financial abuse by an attorney or a Court-appointed Deputy for someone who lacks mental capacity, contact the safeguarding team of the Office of the Public Guardian ().

Physical abuse

Includes assault, hitting, slapping, pushing, misuse of medication, restraint, or the use of physical sanctions.

Psychological abuse

Includes emotional abuse, threats of harm or abandonment, deprivation of contact, humiliation, blaming, controlling, intimidation, coercion, and harassment. Also includes verbal abuse, cyber-bullying, isolation, unreasonable and unjustified withdrawal of services or support networks.

Sexual abuse

Includes rape, inappropriate touching, indecent exposure, and sexual acts to which the adult has not consented or was pressured into consenting to.

Discriminatory abuse

Includes harassment, slurs or similar treatment because of race, gender and gender identity, age, disability, sexual orientation, religion. These are ‘protected characteristics’ under the Equality Act 2010.

Modern slavery

Includes slavery, human trafficking, forced labour and domestic servitude.

Organisational abuse

Includes neglect and poor care practice within an institution or specific care setting or in relation to care provided in a person’s own home. This may range from one-off incidents to on-going ill-treatment. It can be through neglect or poor professional practice because of the structure, policies, processes, and practices within an organisation.

Neglect and acts of omission

Includes ignoring medical, emotional, or physical care needs; failing to provide access to appropriate health or care and support; or withholding the necessities of life, such as medication, nutrition, and heating. Withholding access to assistive equipment like hearing aids, walking aids, or dentures may be neglect and can indicate coercive control.

Domestic abuse

Includes violence: psychological, sexual, financial, emotional abuse: and patterns of coercive and controlling behaviour during a relationship between intimate partners, former partners who still live together, or family members. It also includes honour-based violence. Threats to family pets or other family members can be a form of domestic abuse.


Most forms of neglect or abuse are perpetrated by another person and the law generally presumes there is a perpetrator as well as a victim. An exception to this is self-neglect, which is included as an example of abuse and neglect in statutory guidance.

Self-neglect is complex, due to the fundamental Human Right to Private Life. If someone chooses to live in a particular way, however worrying that is, there are limited circumstances in which the law can intervene. This consideration must be balanced with the right to safeguarding, which is also based on Human Rights protections. Self-neglect covers a range of behaviour related to neglecting to care for one’s personal hygiene, health, or surroundings. It includes behaviour such as hoarding. Evidence of self-neglect may not prompt a formal safeguarding enquiry. Assessments must be on a case-by-case basis.

The decision as to whether a safeguarding response is required depends on the adult’s ability to protect themselves by controlling their own behaviour, and whether this poses a risk to their own, or other people’s, health, and safety. There may come a point when they can no longer do this without external support. If someone you know is not looking after themselves, perhaps not eating or washing properly, or hoarding and living in a chaotic and dilapidated environment, the Local Authority adult social care team should be notified, as they may be able to offer constructive help. They should, at the very least, attempt to engage the person and try to carry out an assessment and may be able to provide some further care or support.

Abuse may manifest itself in many ways. In all cases the welfare, well-being and protection of the adult must be paramount. Professionals and volunteers need to be sensitive to the adult’s needs, the distress which investigations may arouse in the person and that the needs of the adult and his/her family, or the needs of the community, may conflict.

Consent and Capacity

All adults have the right to choice and control in their own lives. As a general principle, no action should be taken for, or on behalf of, an adult without obtaining their consent. It is important to consider whether the adult has the mental capacity to understand and make decisions about the abuse or neglect, the related risks, and any immediate safety actions necessary. If it is felt that the adult may not have the mental capacity to understand the relevant issues and to make a decision, it should be explained to them as far as possible, given the person’s communication needs. They should also be given the opportunity to express their wishes and feelings.

We recognise that our society embraces a variety of diverse practices that require sensitivity to the customs and views of families, while at the same time distinguishing what constitutes acceptable care and what does not.

The effective management of adult protection requires a multidisciplinary approach supported by sharing information in a timely manner with appropriate professionals. Sharing information with other professionals is a fundamental aspect of enabling the safety and protection of adults with care and support needs. No one should take any action with regard to safeguarding concerns without first sharing and discussing these concerns with others such as Designated Safeguarding Lead or Council member. Adults with care and support needs may disclose abuse to the Adult Safeguarding Lead as trusted adults.


Safeguarding is the responsibility of Kehillat Kernow Council, and they are responsible for:

Completing training in Safeguarding Adults, as relevant to their role

Ensuring they understand what abuse is and are aware of how to obtain help and advice in relation to Safeguarding Adults

Ensuring they understand their role and responsibility in relation to Safeguarding Adults, as laid out in this document

Understanding that they may need to disclose confidential information in the interests of safeguarding adults

Ensuring they report any disclosure, allegation, or concern regarding safeguarding adults to the Designated Safeguarding Lead.

The Designated Safeguarding Lead is responsible for ensuring all information is appropriately collated and appropriate actions taken. The Designated Safeguarding Lead is also responsible for supporting those involved and can refer people to Kehillat Kernow’s Mental Health First Aider (Roger Chatfield). The Designated Safeguarding Lead is responsible for informing the Council of any incidents, who in turn are responsible for informing the Charity Commission, where appropriate.


The aim of this policy is to lay out guidelines and a procedure for dealing with situations where we become aware of alleged or suspected cases of abuse of adults. It sets out good practice in our work to protect the adults that we come into contact with and protect ourselves as volunteer led organisation.  Anyone with a concern about the possible abuse of an adult should contact the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL).  Where appropriate, the Designated Safeguarding Lead will liaise with the duty social worker of the Adult Social Care Service where the incident occurred, or where the adult usually resides if an ongoing situation (the contact details can be found online).


If an adult with care and support needs asks if they can tell you something or you feel that they are about to disclose:

Never promise you can keep anything secret.

If the person then decides not to give any details, do not pressure them. Inform the Designated Safeguarding Lead what has happened.

Explain that you may have to pass on any information they give you and offer the option of speaking to the DSL themselves.



When a person discloses to you, stay calm and be reassuring. In the most appropriate way possible try to convey that what the person has to tell is very distressing, it is advisable to try to minimise the number of times that they have to repeat it.

Demonstrate that:

  • You are glad the person told you.
  • That you believe what you are being told (people rarely lie about abuse).
  • That you know it is not the person’s fault.
  • Listen to what is being said, trying not to display shock or disbelief.
  • Accept what is being said but do not comment upon it.
  • Do not ask ‘leading’ questions, for example, “What did s/he do next?” (This assumes s/he did something else), or “Did s/he touch your private parts?” Such questions may invalidate your evidence (and the person’s) in any later prosecution in court.


  • Reassure the person but only so far as is honest and reliable, for example, do not make promises you may not be able to keep, such as, “I’ll stay with you”, or “Everything will be all right now”.
  • Don’t promise to keep what they tell you a secret; you may have a duty to refer.
  • Do reassure and alleviate guilt if the person refers to it. For example, you could say: “You are not to blame.” “You are not alone, you’re not the only one this sort of thing has happened to.”
  • Do not criticise the perpetrator; the person may love him/her, and reconciliation may be possible.
  • Do not share your personal experiences or opinions.
  • Explain that Kehillat Kernow will do our best to protect and support the person, working in conjunction with Statutory Services.

Record and Refer:

  • s soon as possible all information should be recorded in Kehillat Kernow Safeguarding Files. Record as much detail as possible, including names, address, and contact information.
  • Write down the disclosure as it was told to you. Do not include your own language, judgement, or assumptions. Stick to what was actually said by the person.
  • Note any observations on behaviour/emotional state or injuries and bruising. Complete a body map if appropriate.
  • Note time, location and date of disclosure and sign the notes.
  • Do not investigate the matter yourself, merely receive information and be ready to refer.
  • Pass this information and a verbal account to the Designated Safeguarding Lead as soon as possible. It may be your duty to refer this information – you cannot keep it a secret.
  • If the Designated Safeguarding Lead is not available, refer the information to Jeremy Jacobson, KK President or Roger Chatfield, Security Officer and Mental Health First Aider.   You can also make a direct referral to the local Adult Social Care Service.
  • If you believe the person is at immediate risk, call the Police on 999.


This section addresses what to do if you notice signs and symptoms of abuse, or which you are concerned about, but no disclosure has been made. Do NOT approach the person, family, or anyone else involved.

Record and Refer:

  • s soon as possible all information should be recorded in the Kehillat Kernow Safeguarding Files.  Record as much detail as possible in a clear and objective way
  • Write down the nature of your concerns in an objective way; try to avoid making judgements or assumptions.
  • Note any observations on behaviour/emotional state or injuries and bruising.
  • Note time, location and date of any incidents or observations and sign the notes.
  • Do not investigate the matter yourself.
  • Pass this information and a verbal account to the Designated Safeguarding Lead as soon as possible. It is your duty to refer this information – you cannot keep it a secret.
  • If the Designated Safeguarding Lead or KK President are not available, make a referral to the local Adult Social Care Service.
  • If you believe the person is at immediate risk, call the Police on 999.


All suspicions and investigations are kept confidential and shared only with those who need to know. Any information can be shared under the guidance of the Local Safeguarding Partners and in line with the GDPR, Data Protection Act 2018, and Working Together 2018.

All written accounts including rough notes and all other related material should be kept in a sealed envelope marked CONFIDENTIAL. These envelopes are retained in a locked filing cabinet in a secure location.

Electronic versions of referrals are kept in a secure folder.

Avoiding risks of complaints and allegation against our volunteers

Working Practice

We keep a record of all complaints and concerns including details of how they were responded to.

The Designated Safeguarding Lead to undertake their role adequately and offer advice, guidance, supervision, and support.

The Designated Safeguarding Lead will inform the referee at the first opportunity of any significant safeguarding concern; however, this should not delay any referrals being made to the adult’s social care, and/or to the police.


All suspicions and investigations are kept confidential and shared only with those who need to know. Any information is shared under the guidance of the Adult Social Services in the local area of the suspected abuse and in line with the GDPR, Data Protection Act 2018, and Working Together 2018.

Confidential information is ‘information not normally in the public domain or readily available from another source. It should have a degree of sensitivity and value and should be subject to a duty of confidence’. All Kehillat Kernow members have a duty to disclose information where failure to do so could result in an adult with care and support needs suffering abuse. Detailed contemporaneous records must be kept by all involved. These should separate fact, reported information and opinion. All records must be submitted within 24 hours, and ideally on the same day. All records will be submitted to the Designated Safeguarding Lead, and held on KK records, in accordance with GDPR. A public interest test can be used to make judgements regarding managing confidential information. The public interest in safeguarding children and vulnerable adults overrides the need to keep information confidential.

All written accounts including rough notes and all other related material should be kept in a sealed envelope marked CONFIDENTIAL.  These envelopes are retained in a locked filing cabinet in a secure location.  Electronic versions of referrals are kept in a secure folder.

It is in the public interest:

  • to protect children, adults with care and support needs and other people from harm
  • to promote the welfare of adults with care and support needs, children, and the wider community.
  • to prevent crime and disorder

Alternatively, non-disclosure may also be, in some circumstances, in the public interest. In sharing information, consideration should be given to the following:

  • Is there a legitimate reason to share information?
  • Is there a necessity to identify the individual?
  • If the information is confidential, has consent been obtained?
  • If consent to share information is refused, do the circumstances meet a public interest test?
  • Ensure the right information is disclosed appropriately


Kehillat Kernow recognises that involvement in Adult Safeguarding can be stressful.  It is therefore committed to offering help and support for members/volunteers who have concerns. Members can gain support from the Designated Safeguarding Lead, Council members and/or the mental health first aider. The Safeguarding lead will contact Social Care or other relevant agency for advice where there are sufficient concerns regarding an adult’s safety and welfare. If Social Services make an initial assessment which confirms concerns about an adult’s safety, a Social Worker may interview the person.

Inter-Agency Procedures

KK has a duty to safeguard and promote the welfare of vulnerable adults and may need to share information and work in partnership with other agencies where there are concerns about an adult’s welfare.  We ensure that effective working relationships are developed with all external services involved in Safeguarding and Adult Protection.


Complaints about the failure to follow these procedures should follow the Kehillat Kernow’s Complaints Policy.

Allegations against volunteers and persons in positions of trust

We ensure that all members know how to complain about the behaviour or actions of volunteers working under the aegis of KK which may include an allegation of abuse.

We ensure that all  volunteers and anyone else working under the aegis of KK knows how to raise concerns that they may have about the conduct or behaviour of other people including colleagues.

We differentiate between allegations, and concerns about the quality of care or practice and complaints and have a separate process for responding to complaints.

We respond to any inappropriate behaviour displayed by, a volunteer or any other person, which includes:

Inappropriate sexual comments:

  • excessive one-to-one attention beyond the requirements of their usual role and responsibilities, or inappropriate sharing of images.
  • We will recognise and respond to allegations that a person who works with an adult has:
  • behaved in a way that has harmed a person, or may have harmed a person
  • possibly committed a criminal offence against or related to a person
  • behaved towards a person or people in a way that indicates they may pose a risk of harm to children
  • We ensure that all our Council members and volunteers know how to raise concerns to the Adult Designated Safeguarding Lead about a volunteer working under the aegis of KK and the DSL will respond appropriately.
  • Volunteers are aware of how to escalate their concerns within KK if they are not satisfied with the response given by the DSL.
  • We respond to any disclosure by an adult or volunteer that abuse by a member or volunteer within the setting may have taken, or is taking place, by first recording the details of any such alleged incident.
  • We refer any such complaint immediately to the DSL within the organisation and, as appropriate, refer to the Local Authority, to investigate and / or offer advice.
  • We co-operate entirely with any investigation carried out by Adults Social Services in conjunction with the police.
  • Where the Council and Adults Social Services agree it is appropriate in the circumstances, the member or volunteer will be suspended for the duration of the investigation. This is not an indication of admission that the alleged incident has taken place but is to protect the members of KK as well as the adult and families throughout the process.   

Disciplinary action

Where a member or volunteer has been dismissed due to engaging in activities that caused concern for the safeguarding of children or vulnerable adults, we will notify the Disclosure and Barring Service of relevant information, so that individuals who pose a threat to children and vulnerable groups can be identified and barred from working with these groups.

Promoting Awareness and Training

We are committed to promoting awareness of adult abuse issues throughout our training and learning programmes for Council members, volunteers and members.

Training opportunities are sought for all adults involved with KK to ensure that they are able to recognise the signs and signals of possible physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, and neglect and that they are aware of the Local Authority guidelines for making referrals. 

Designated persons receive training in accordance with that recommended by the Local Safeguarding Board.

We ensure that all members know the procedures for reporting and recording any concerns they may have about the provision.

We ensure that all members receive regular updates on safeguarding via emails, newsletters, online training and/or discussion.

Volunteer and members Support

KK has a duty of care for all of its members and volunteers. It is recognised that dealing with safeguarding and adult protection concerns is likely to be a stressful experience.

We will support such by providing an opportunity to talk through their anxieties with the Designated Safeguarding Lead, the mental health first aider and/or to seek further support. In cases of serious abuse or trauma, KK will seek psychological support.

We recognise that the Designated Safeguarding Lead should also have access to support. The Designated Safeguarding Lead is supported in the first instance by members of the Council, however additional support may also be required.

Support to families

We believe in building trusting and supportive relationships with families and volunteers.

Confidential records kept on a person to ensure a coordinated response.

Legal framework

Primary legislation

Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act (2006)

The Care Act (2014)

Secondary legislation

Sexual Offences Act (2003)

Mental Capacity Act (2005)

Criminal Justice and Court Services Act (2000)

Liberty Protection Safeguards (MCA amended 2019)

Equality Act (2010)

Disclosure & Barring Service (2013)

General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) (2018)

Serious Crime Act (2015)

Counter-Terrorism and Security Act (2015)

Further guidance

Age UK and SCIE

Information Sharing: Advice for Practitioners providing Safeguarding Services (DfE 2018)

Disclosure and Barring Service:

Revised Prevent Duty Guidance for England and Wales (HMG, 2015)

This policy was adopted by:Kehillat Kernow
On:Draft form 29.12.2020
Date to be reviewed:Feb 2022
Signed on behalf of the provider:Rachel Chatfield
Name of signatory:Rachel Chatfield
Role of signatory:Secretary/Safeguarding Lead