Preventing the neglect and abuse of vulnerable adults will be top of the agenda in Medway next week as Safeguarding Adults Awareness Week takes place from Monday, 13 to Friday, 17 June.

With the tagline “Stop Adult Harm – It’s Your Responsibility” – this year’s event is aimed at making people aware of the huge impact adult abuse can have on individuals and the support that is available to help them take action.

Vulnerable adults who are in need of care and protection can include people with learning disabilities, older people, people with mental health problems and those with a physical disability.

Everyone can play their part in ensuring that vulnerable adults are protected from risks ranging from physical, sexual and psychological abuse to discrimination, neglect and financial exploitation.

Medway Council’s social services teams work closely alongside partners in housing, health, police, education, private and voluntary sector organisations, to raise awareness of this problem and to take action to prevent it, as well as taking the lead in coordinating the response if someone reports adult abuse.

A joint event between Medway Council and Kent County Council, the awareness week will include information sessions targeted towards raising awareness of the different kinds of abuse vulnerable adults may fall victim to and how to prevent and be aware of these.

On Monday, 13 June, staff will be at Pentagon Shopping Centre, Chatham, from 9am to 5pm. Police officers, healthcare staff, social services representatives and community support officers will all be on hand to answer questions, give out information and chat to shoppers.

Staff will also be at Gillingham Library on Tuesday, 14 June, from 10am to 3pm, at The Wisdom Hospice, Rochester on Wednesday, 15 June from 1pm to 3pm, and at Rochester Community Hub (just off Rochester High Street) on Thursday, 16 June from 10am to 3pm.

Medway Council’s Portfolio Holder for Adult Services Cllr David Brake said:
“It is our primary and most important duty to protect vulnerable people from harm. As a community we share this duty. Please play your part by assisting us to help people at risk of harm, neglect or abuse.”

“Across the UK, Serious Case Reviews often identify opportunities when intervention could have prevented a bad situation becoming a tragedy. No-one would wish to ignore suffering or to have a missed opportunity on their conscience.”

“If it concerns you, please don’t ignore it. If it troubles you, please contact us. Your call really can make a difference.”