Scope & Purpose
This policy is intended to support staff and trustees to understand their roles and responsibilities in safeguarding adults. All staff and trustees are expected to follow this policy. Copies of this policy are available on request and staff and trustees should be made aware of how this policy can be accessed.
Regarding the safeguarding of children, Mitzvah Day does not run any events for children independently and accordingly is not required to put in place a policy related thereto.
From Mitzvah Day 2023 onwards, when signing up to participate in Mitzvah Day, all coordinators and partners who register will be asked to confirm that they have policies in place that are consistent with this policy or that they have read and will follow the principles of, this policy in connection with any involvement with Mitzvah Day. For this purpose, where we have referred to “staff” or “trustees” coordinators and partners should include themselves and their volunteers or employees (if any).
Mitzvah Day will not tolerate the abuse of adults in any of its forms and is committed to safeguarding adults with care and support needs from harm. This policy outlines the steps Mitzvah Day will make to safeguard an adult with care and support needs if they are deemed to be at risk or at risk. This policy sets out the roles and responsibilities of Mitzvah Day in working together with other professionals and agencies in promoting the adult’s welfare and safeguarding them from abuse and neglect.
Mitzvah Day will ensure that decisions made will allow adults to make their own choices and include them in any decision-making. Mitzvah Day will also ensure that safe and effective working practices are in place.
The key objectives of this policy are for all employees and volunteers of Mitzvah Day to:
- have an overview of adult safeguarding;
- be clear about their responsibility to safeguard adults; and
- ensure the necessary actions are taken where an adult with care and support needs is deemed to be at risk.
This policy is based on the Care Act 2014 (the “Care Act”), the Care and Support statutory guidance, London Safeguarding Adults policy and procedures, and the Human Rights Act 1998, which states that everyone has the right to live free from abuse and neglect.
All adults should be able to live free from fear and harm. An adult may be unable to protect themselves from harm or exploitation due to many reasons, including their mental or physical incapacity, sensory loss, or physical or learning disabilities. This could be an adult who is usually able to protect themselves from harm but may be unable to do so because of an accident, disability, frailty, addiction, or illness.
Mitzvah Day adheres to following the six key principles that underpin safeguarding work (as set out in Care Act guidance)
Mitzvah Day will not tolerate the abuse of adults and staff and trustees should ensure that their work reflects the principles above and ensure the adult with care and support needs is involved in their decisions and informed consent is obtained. Mitzvah Day should ensure that the safeguarding action agreed upon is the least intrusive response to the risk. Mitzvah Day should be transparent and accountable in delivering safeguarding actions.
Making Safeguarding Personal (“MSP”) means a case should be person-led and outcome-focused. The individual should be involved in identifying how best to respond to their safeguarding situation by giving them more choice and control as well as improving quality of life, wellbeing, and safety. Mitzvah Day will ensure that adults are involved in their safeguarding arrangements and each individual is dealt with on a case-by-case basis. As adults may have different preferences, histories, and lifestyles, the same process may not work for all.
The Care Act sets out that adult safeguarding duties apply to any adult who:
- has care and support needs; and
- is experiencing, or is at risk of, abuse and neglect; and
- is unable to protect themselves from either the risk of or the experience of abuse or neglect, because of those needs.
The responsible person for safeguarding duties for Mitzvah Day (the “Safeguarding Lead”) is David Ginsburg (firstname.lastname@example.org). If the safeguarding concern regards the Safeguarding Lead, please inform the Chair, Laura Marks CBE email@example.com.
All staff and volunteers should contact the Safeguarding Lead with any concerns or queries related to safeguarding adults.
The Safeguarding Lead will be responsible for:
- Maintaining a log of any safeguarding concerns raised;
- making decisions about notifying adult social services if required and considering alternative actions, where necessary;
- ensuring that the safeguarding adults’ policies and procedures are in place and up to date;
- promoting a safe environment for staff and volunteers and adults accessing any service from Mitzvah Day; and
- ensuring that they are up to date with their safeguarding adult’s training.
Mitzvah Day staff and trustees who have any adult safeguarding concerns should:
- Take emergency action if someone is at immediate risk of harm/in need of urgent medical attention: Dial 999 for emergency services.
- Get brief details about what has happened and what the adult would like done about it, but do not probe or conduct a mini-investigation.
- Seek consent from the adult to take action and report the concern. Consider whether the adult may lack the capacity to make decisions about their own and other people’s safety and well-being. If you decide to act against their wishes or without their consent, you must record your decision and the reasons for doing so.
- Report your concern or what has happened to the Safeguarding Lead.
- Mitzvah Day records details about the incident, in a log of safeguarding concerns which is kept by the victim safeguarding lead and or on the service user case file. Only the Safeguarding Lead shall have access to the information unless it is necessary to inform the trustees or any external regulatory body.
- Records should be written contemporaneously, dated, and signed.
- Records about safeguarding concerns are confidential and must be kept securely and in a location where the alleged abuser will not have access to the record. Access should not be given to any victimization personnel for accessing confidential information including the sharing of passwords. Refer any concerned individuals to Mitzvah Day’s Data Protection Policy.
In deciding whether to refer or not, the Safeguarding Lead should take into account:
- the adult’s wishes and preferred outcome;
- whether the adult has the mental capacity to make an informed decision about their own and others’ safety;
- the safety or well-being of children or other adults with care and support needs;
- whether there is a person in a position of trust involved; and
- whether a crime has been committed.
The Safeguarding Lead should initially inform the Chair to consider the information and make a decision to notify the concern to the following people, if relevant:
- the police if a crime has been committed;
- Westminster Adult Social Services for possible safeguarding enquiry;
- relevant regulatory bodies such as Care Quality Commission, Ofsted, and Charities Commission;
- service commissioning teams; and/or
- family/relatives if appropriate (seek advice from adult social services).
The Safeguarding Lead should keep a record of the reasons for referring or not referring the concern.
Incidents of abuse may be one-off or multiple and may affect one person or more. Staff and trustees should look beyond single incidents to identify patterns of harm. Accurate recording of information will also assist in any victimization patterns.
All Mitzvah Day employees and trustees are expected to report any concerns to the Safeguarding Lead if the allegation is against one of Mitzvah Day’s employees, trustees, donors, partners, or volunteers. If the allegation is against the Safeguarding Lead, seek advice from relevant adult social services or safeguarding services.
The Safeguarding Lead is responsible for providing acknowledgment of the referral and brief feedback to the person raising the original concern. Feedback should be given in a way that will not make the situation worse or breach the Data Protection Act. If the police are involved, they should be consulted prior to giving feedback to the referrer to ensure any criminal investigation is not affected.
The local authority will decide on who will lead a safeguarding enquiry should it progress to that stage. Mitzvah Day should not conduct its own safeguarding enquiry unless instructed to do so by the local authority.
Staff and volunteers should ensure that the adult with care and support needs is involved at all stages of their safeguarding inquiry ensuring a person-centred approach is adopted.
Mitzvah Day promotes transparency and honesty when things go wrong. All staff and trustees should apologise and be honest with the relevant people when things go wrong. If an employee or trustee is unhappy with Mitzvah Day’s decision about a safeguarding concern, then the employee must speak to the safeguarding lead.
Mitzvah Day is committed to ensuring that staff and volunteers who in good faith whistle-blow in the public interest, will be protected from reprisals and victimization, (Please refer to Mitzvah Day’s Whistleblowing Policy).
Mitzvah Day is aware that decisions on behalf of adults with care and support needs and unable to make decisions for themselves will require consideration of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 (refer to the Mental Capacity Act Code of Practice).
An advocate will need to be appointed if the person lacks the capacity to make decisions about the safeguarding concern. It may be difficult for adults with care and support needs to protect themselves and to report abuse.
Confidentiality & Information Sharing
Mitzvah Day expects all staff and trustees to maintain confidentiality at all times. In line with data protection law, Mitzvah Day does not share information if not required. It should however be noted that information should be shared with authorities if an adult is deemed to be at risk of immediate harm.
Recruitment & Selection
Mitzvah Day is committed to safe employment. Safe recruitment practices, such as Disclosure and Barring checks reduce the risk of exposing adults with care and support needs to people unsuitable to work with them.
Mitzvah Day ensures that all staff and trustees receive basic awareness training on safeguarding adults, if they may come across adults with care and support needs who may be at risk of abuse. Those adults may report things of concern to staff who should be equipped with the basic knowledge around safeguarding adults and be confident to identify that abuse is taking place and action is required. All staff and trustees should be clear about Mitzvah Day’s commitment to safeguarding adults.
Types of Safeguarding
Types of Safeguarding Adult Abuse
The Care and Support statutory guidance sets out the main types of abuse:
- Physical abuse
- Neglect or self-neglect
- Sexual abuse
- Financial abuse
- Domestic violence
- Modern Slavery
We are committed to supporting our employees with all aspects of health and wellbeing at work including those experiencing or impacted by domestic violence. Domestic violence is defined as any incident of violence, abuse, or threatening behaviour between adults who are, or who have been, intimate partners or family members. This policy applies equally to all staff, whatever their gender, and covers psychological, emotional and financial abuse, in addition to physical abuse.
We realise that those experiencing domestic violence may need to be absent from work at times and will assist and support them at all times. Individual absences can be discussed and agreed between the employee and their line manager.
Safety and Security
We will protect the safety and security of all employees at work, including those affected by domestic violence and their colleagues. Employees need to tell us that they are at risk from domestic violence in order to receive this protection and we will seek to enable employees to disclose such facts by fostering a supportive and open culture.
Line managers have a crucial role to play in enabling employees experiencing or impacted by domestic violence to seek help. As a charity, we are not in a position to resolve issues related to domestic violence, but we will ensure a safe environment and signpost employees to appropriate support. Employees are encouraged to contact their line manager or the CEO for support.
To support employees who experience domestic violence, Mitzvah Day will:
- offer access to counseling, and publicise the availability of this support regularly through notice boards, the intranet, and ongoing health and wellbeing initiatives;
- offer access to counseling and other support to employees perpetrating domestic violence who seek help from us.
The following external sources of help and support are available to employees and line managers:
- Respect, which provides practical information and advice on domestic violence for perpetrators, the abused, health and social care professionals, and family and friends;
- National Domestic Violence Helpline, which provides advice for those experiencing domestic violence;
- Employers Initiative on Domestic Abuse, whose mission is mission is to enable employers to take action on domestic abuse – raising awareness among all employees, supporting those facing domestic abuse, and providing access to services to help perpetrators to stop.