Adult abuse is everyone’s business and this Safeguarding Adults Awareness Week (3-7 October), residents of Kent and Medway are urged to “See It, Report It, Stop It”.
The best weapon against abuse is talking about it and anyone with concerns about a loved one, colleague, friend, neighbour or themselves needs to tell us about it.
Agencies across Kent and Medway, including: Kent County Council, Medway Council, NHS and Health organisations, district councils, emergency services, care providers, housing associations and the voluntary sector, are raising awareness this week about different forms of abuse and how to recognise and stop it.
Independent Chair of the Kent and Medway Safeguarding Adults Board, Deborah Stuart- Angus, said: “Abuse and neglect can happen to anyone, from any background and we want victims to know they are not alone.
“We will not tolerate abuse in Kent and Medway and agencies across the county continue to work very closely to aim to keep the most vulnerable members of our society safe.
“We know that abuse can be hard to talk about and in many circumstances, we can only help to stop it, if a concern is brought to our attention.
“That’s why we need our communities, staff and partners across Kent and Medway, to be our eyes and ears. My rule of thumb has always been: ‘If you are in doubt check it out’ – if you have a concern, please report it.
“We will not overreact. We will take a balanced view, sometimes simply giving advice or when necessary, making relevant enquiries.
“We will keep the person at the centre of what we do, enabling them to stay in control and keeping safeguarding personal.”
Last year, more than 4000 people did speak up across Kent and Medway and reported their concerns.
Abuse comes in many forms and may include physical, psychological, financial or material, such as consumer scams, sexual abuse, neglect, modern slavery, self-neglect, hate crimes and discrimination, and domestic violence.
Kent and Medway’s multi-agency Safeguarding Adults Board brings together agencies across the County to keep adults safe from harm and protect their rights.
During Safeguarding Adults Awareness Week, events are being held to raise awareness of the different types of abuse that some people of Kent and Medway suffer daily and how they, or their loved ones, can seek the help and advice they need to keep them safe and well.
To report abuse, contact Kent County Council on 03000 41 61 61 or Medway Council on 01634 334466 or if someone is in immediate risk, dial 999. Support will be provided by specially trained people to victims of abuse and those who report it.