Safeguarding is a fundamental part of Age UK's work and this commitment is reflected in the Age UK Quality Standards and the values of our organisation, which inform and support all of our safeguarding activity:
- We are respectful
- We treat others as they would want to be treated
- We are inclusive
- We work together, we involve and we consult
- We are solutions-focused
- We ensure that what we do makes a real difference
- We are expert
- We strive to be the best at what we do.
- We are empowering
- We support others to achieve their goals
Everyone's responsibility - Everyone at Age UK has a responsibility to keep children and adults who need care and support safe from abuse and neglect.
Prevention – We will put sensible measures in place to prevent abuse, including the use of safe recruitment practices, promoting safe working practice and raising awareness of safeguarding.
Protection – We will provide policy, procedures, information and training to enable all Age UK staff to identify and respond appropriately to concerns about abuse.
Partnership - Age UK will work in Partnership with statutory, regulatory and other relevant organisations to ensure that safeguarding concerns are responded to appropriately.
Empowerment – We will be person-centred and uphold rights in our safeguarding work
Accountability - We aim to be transparent in our approaches and recognise the need for continuous learning and improvement.
Roles and Responsibilities
All staff and volunteers
Every individual working for Age UK, irrespective of their role, has a part to play in safeguarding children and adults who need care and support. All staff will undertake training and must familiarise themselves with our Safeguarding Policy and Procedures.
Age UK trustees approve the Safeguarding Policy and have a duty of care to their charity, which includes taking the necessary steps to safeguard those at risk from abuse, managing risk and protecting the reputation of the charity.
Directors have a responsibility to ensure that safeguarding is included, where appropriate, in the strategic plans, risk assessments, communications and quality assurance processes of their Directorate. In some cases they will be required to make decisions in relation to complex or serious safeguarding concerns, in consultation with the Head of Safeguarding.
Heads of Department other other managers
Heads of Department and Managers are responsible for ensuring that they, and the staff that they supervise, are aware of Age UK's safeguarding policy and procedures and access relevant training. They should promote the discussion of safeguarding at team meetings and as part of supervision or one-to-one meetings. They may be required to make decisions relating to complex or serious safeguarding concerns and can seek advice from the Head of Safeguarding where required.
Head of Safeguarding
The Head of Safeguarding is the Designated Person for Safeguarding at Age UK. They are responsible for developing and quality assuring safeguarding activity across Age UK and supporting best practice for external stakeholders.
Age UK Partners
Age UK Partners will make their own arrangements for safeguarding, in partnership with their local Adult and Children's (where required) Safeguarding Boards and in accordance with the Age UK Quality Standards for safeguarding.
Breaches of Policy
Failure to comply with the Age UK safeguarding policy may be managed in a number of ways, depending on the nature and consequences of any incident. In some cases a combination of responses may be required.
- Local authority co-ordinated safeguarding investigation
- Police investigation
- Referral to the Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS)
- People & Performance disciplinary process
- Serious incident reporting to The Charity Commission
- Internal review or co-operation with an external review
- Age UK Guidance & Procedures for Adult Safeguarding
- Age UK Guidance & Procedures for Child Safeguarding
- Age UK Recruitment & Selection Procedure
- Age UK Whistleblowing Policy
- Age UK Health and Safety Policy Statements
- Age UK Safeguarding Training Competencies
- Age UK Values
- Age UK Incident Management Procedures
- 'Putting People First' The Age UK Community Interest Company approach to caring for customers in vulnerable circumstances
Age UK is committed to providing services which embrace diversity and that promote equality of opportunity. Everyone who accesses our services or works for us in a paid or voluntary capacity should be safe, empowered to play a part in promoting their own welfare and that of others and able to live a life free from abuse. This applies to all, regardless of age, sex, ethnicity, disability, sexuality or belief.