What is Abuse?
Abuse is when someone does or says things to another person to hurt, upset or make them frightened. It can consist of single or repeated acts. Adult abuse is wrong and can happen to anyone who is 18 years of age or over.
The abuse can be committed by anyone, but is often from someone who is in a position of trust – a relative, friend, paid worker or volunteer.
Who is an adult at risk?
The Social Services & Well-being (Wales) Act 2014 states that an adult at risk is an adult who:
- is experiencing or is at risk of abuse or neglect;
- has needs for care and support (whether or not the authority is meeting any of those needs); and
- as a result of those needs is unable to protect themselves against the abuse or neglect or the risk of it.
This definition may include an adult who needs support with their physical or emotional wellbeing, who as a result may be considered vulnerable. They may need assistance with everyday living tasks. Some examples of this could be requiring assistance with eating, dressing, managing money or going out of the house.
Where does abuse happen?
Abuse can happen anywhere including:
- at home
- in a care home, hospital or day service
- at work or at college
- in a public place or in the community
Types of Abuse
Abuse can take many forms (this is not an exhaustive list):
- Physical (hitting, kicking, undue restraint, over or misuse of medication, or inappropriate sanctions).
- Psychological / Emotional (threats of harm, abandonment or humiliation, controlling relationships and isolation, verbal or racial abuse).
- Sexual (unwanted sexual activity which the vulnerable adult has not consented to/and or was pressured into consenting).
- Financial (theft, fraud or applying pressure in relation to money or other property, having money or other property misused).
- Neglect (failure to meet the everyday needs of the adult at risk, which includes a person’s basic physical, emotional, social or psychological needs, failure to access medical care or services or failure to give prescribed medication).
Every adult has the right to live in safety, free from abuse and neglect
What to do if you suspect an adult is at risk of abuse or harm?
Before making a referral we ask that where feasible you get the permission of the person you are referring beforehand. This ensures a person centred approach and Welsh Guidance asks that we get consent before sharing reports about any individual. If it’s not possible (the person may lack mental capacity) or there is an overriding public interest, for example the perpetrator is in a position of trust and others may be at risk then we will consider overriding consent. If in doubt please give us a ring and we will be happy to advise you.
You can contact the safeguarding team on 01639 685378
Out of hours you can contact the Emergency Duty Team on 01639 895455
You can download a referral form by clicking
Other useful contacts: