Detecting, preventing and responding effectively to cases of abuse and neglect is a fundamental tenet of the White Paper and already a guiding principle for all responsible colleagues working in social care. But more needs to be done to protect the vulnerable.
In 2011, Government announced its intention to place Safeguarding Adults Boards on a statutory footing in its statement of government policy on adult safeguarding. That statement also set out the key principles that local authorities and their partners should use to establish and evaluate their adult safeguarding policies and practice locally.
The White Paper and draft Bill reaffirms the intention to legislate in the critical area of adult safeguarding. It is expected that existing Boards and multi-agency partnerships will make sure they are using current resources to deliver clear and effective local safeguarding arrangements.
Meanwhile, local authorities should be working in partnership with police, NHS organisations, housing bodies and others to improve the safety of those in vulnerable situations. In anticipation of the legislation, local authorities and partners should take action to make sure everyone involved in local adult safeguarding is clear about their role and accountability.