To receive a presentation on the Local Safeguarding Adults Board Annual Report 2014-15
Robert Templeton, Cheshire East Safeguarding Adults Board Chair, attended the meeting and gave a presentation in respect of the Safeguarding Adults Board Annual Report, including what Adult Safeguarding was, outlining some facts and figures, the Care Act and its context, making Safeguarding personal, what was happening nationally and what was happening in Cheshire East to make it real.
The CESAB was a multi-agency partnership which provided strategic leadership for the development of safeguarding policy and practice, consistent with national policy and best practice. Membership included representatives from Adult social care, fire, health, housing, police, probation and the third sector and service user representation.
The vision was outlined, which was to ensure that vulnerable adults living in Cheshire East felt safe and free from abuse and neglect. The service was based on the principles of prevention, protection, choice, self determination, independence and recovery and its mission was to ensure that adult safeguarding became everyone's business.
The legal context was outlined and it was noted that this was very complex. The Care Act 2014 placed a duty on local authorities to establish a SAB. The objective was to help and protect adults at risk of abuse or neglect and the SAB may do anything necessary or desirable to achieve this aim. The NHS and Police must nominate members with required skills and experience.
Guidance was about to be issued with regard to Making Safeguarding Personal. There had been a sector led initiative in response to findings from peer challenges, consultations and engagement, which had identified the need to develop an outcomes focus to safeguarding. Making Safeguarding Personal was about engaging with people about the outcomes they wanted at the beginning and middle of working with them and ascertaining the extent to which those outcomes were realised. To do this, a mix of responses was required, to enable people to achieve resolution or recovery and access to justice. Making Safeguarding Personal was an approach providing a different way of practicing safeguarding.
In practice, the fundamental shift revolved by putting the adult and their wishes and experience at the centre of safeguarding enquiries, which sought to enable people to resolve their circumstances, enabling them to recover from abuse or neglect and realise the outcomes that they wanted.
Examples of what some of the people who used the services were saying were outlined in the presentation. There was a vibrant user group in place and Katie Jones, who led the user group and was in attendance at the meeting, reported that some of the users felt “fenced in” and felt that decisions were being made for them. They wanted to be in control, make their own decisions and to be seen as the person, rather than being defined by the circumstances that they found themselves in.
Details of the new safeguarding principles were outlined. Safeguarding was to be done with and not to people, focusing on achieving meaningful improvement to people’s circumstances, rather than just on investigation and conclusion. All professionals involved in safeguarding should develop and utilise their skills, rather than by just putting people through a process and the difference safeguarding had made in outcomes for people should be measured. Business as usual was not an option. Partnership engagement would be vital and partner agencies needed to be kept well informed. The “Golden thread” from strategic to frontline services was to identify what outcomes were wanted or desired, how agencies would work together to make this happen and how the agencies would know that they had made a difference.
Details of what would be required to make this work locally were outlined. There would be key challenges for the Board and it was proposed to hold an Away Day, where it was hoped to present a business plan, showing the challenges and how it was proposed to go forward.
Discussion took place as to how the Board could engage in the process. Members of the Board also requested additional information in respect of the outcomes referred to which had been as result of the activities carried out.
Assurance was sought that there would be appropriate training for the Smart team and that there would be engagement with GPs and front line staff, in order to embed the value of safeguarding. It was agreed that there should be a report back to a future meeting on both these issues.
That a report covering the above issues be submitted to future meeting of the Board.