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Safeguarding adults and personalisation

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Safeguarding adults and personalisation
This essay will focus on adult safeguarding and how law and policy applies to working with vulnerable adults, which in turn will recognise how this can protect or hinder their rights. In addition to this, it will also demonstrate my understanding of what the role and responsibilities of a social worker is in regards to safeguarding and personalisation.

The adult safeguarding national policy agenda was set out in 2000 by the department of health called ‘No Secrets’; named such to outline that there can be no secrets or somewhere to hide when it comes to exposing the abuse of vulnerable adults. This guidance defined a vulnerable adult as ‘a person who is or may be in need of community care services by reason of mental or other disability, age or illness; and who is or may be unable to protect him or herself against significant harm or exploitation’. (Department of Health, 2013) However, safeguarding services have considerably developed since then and in the draft Care and Support Bill 2012, a new term, ‘adult at risk’ has now replaced ‘vulnerable adult’ as a more acceptable alternative and because the term ‘vulnerable adult’ may wrongly imply that some of the fault for the abuse lies with the adult abused. It was proposed by the Law Commission and it is now defined as: ‘anyone with social care needs who is or may be at risk of significant harm’. Although this is a much shorter definition it is still clear that no matter what your circumstances, anyone can be classed at risk and is entitled to be safeguarded and protected from abuse. (Department of Health, 2013)

Many social workers feel frustrated by the fact that when dealing with adult abuse cases there is no statute that is equivalent to the Children Act 1989. However, there are several pieces of policy and legislation that social workers can draw upon to support their practice that will both empower and protect individuals who find themselves in vulnerable situations. (Pritchard, 2009)
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