Lewisham Safeguarding Adults Board


Information for Professionals

Information for Professionals

The information in this section is for all staff engaged in safeguarding adults at risk. It gives practical pointers to help people assess the risk of abuse, recognise it when it does occur and respond to it appropriately. It will also help put front line safeguarding in a context of multi-agency, cross-borough work to prevent and investigate abuse across London.

While there are similarities between practice with children and adults at risk, there are significant differences and, to a large extent this is reflected in the definition of adults at risk which contributes to that complexity.

Services have a duty to safeguard all of their service users but provide additional measures for service users who are less able to protect themselves from harm or abuse.

‘Safeguarding adults’ covers a spectrum of activity from prevention through to multi agency responses where harm and abuse occurs.

Safeguarding Resources

Skills for Care have collated practical and useful safeguarding resources for the Private Voluntary and Independent Sector. The information available includes recommendations, standards, guides and links to a whole host of related resources.

Jargon Buster

Think Local Act Personal have a useful Jargon Buster that can help professionals from fields other than social work understand the language that is commonly used in care and support work.

SLaM Crisis Assessment Team

Here you will find information on the SLaM Crisis Assessment Team

Disclosure and Barring Service

The Disclosure and Barring Service have produced guidance on 'Making Recruitment Easier'. 

Safeguarding in Care Homes Guidelines and Tools

NICE guideline on Safeguarding adults in care homes

The final guideline has now been published on the NICE website. You can also find the supporting evidence, tools and resources as well as all the stakeholder comments that were received during consultation and the responses to these comments. The comments were invaluable in helping NICE to develop and refine the guideline. They have also produced an equality impact assessment to support the guideline.

The recommendations from this guideline have been included in the NICE Pathway on safeguarding adults in care homes, which brings together everything which was said on safeguarding adults in care homes in an interactive flowchart. There is brief information about the guideline for people using services, carers and the public at Information for the public’.

If you have any further queries, please contact SafeguardingAdults@nice  

Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking

Modern Slavery: Duty to notify

Do you know that you have a duty to notify the Home Office of potential victims of modern slavery?

The Modern Slavery Fact-sheet can tell you more on your duty to notify.

The Home Office has published new modern slavery it's closer than you think campaign resources which brings together documents and promotional material related to the awareness campaign on modern slavery which you can use in your local campaigns.

Identification of victims

The Home Office has produced Modern Slavery Victims - Guidance, Referral and Assessment Forms which gives information on how to identify and refer potential victims of modern slavery/human trafficking to the national referral mechanism.

What is the National Referral Mechanism?

The national referral mechanism (NRM) is a victim identification and support process. The NRM is designed to make it easier for all agencies that could be involved in a trafficking case (eg the police, UK Visas and Immigration, local authorities, non-governmental organisations) to share information about potential victims and facilitate their access to advice, accommodation and support.

The guidance document gives information including:

  • What the NRM is
  • The referral process
  • How to complete the referral forms

Slavery and human trafficking in supply chains: guidance for businesses

The Home Office provides Statutory guidance for organisations on how to ensure that slavery and human trafficking is not taking place in their business or supply chains.

Links to further information and resources

Lewisham Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking 7 Minute Briefing

Hope for Justice exist to bring an end to modern slavery by rescuing victims, restoring lives, and reforming society.

Hope for Justice have published a new Spotting the Signs of Modern Slavery poster for you to display in your organisation.

Hope for Justice also have comprehensive briefing documents that define human trafficking, outline the UK and global markets for the exploitation of human beings and analyse the current mechanisms for addressing this complex crime.

Human Trafficking Foundation (HTF) is a UK-based charity which grew out of the work of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Human Trafficking. HTF was created in order to support and add value to the work of the many charities and agencies operating to combat human trafficking in the UK.

London Directory of Services
The Human Trafficking Foundation has created a Directory of Survivor Support Services in London, which is constantly updated.


Hoarding & Self-neglect

What is Hoarding?

  • The acquisition of, and failure to discard, a large number of possessions that appear to be useless or of limited value. (Frost and Gross, 1993)


  • Living spaces are cluttered enough that they can't be used for the activities for which they were designed.  (Frost and Hartl, 1996)


  • Where significant distress or impairment in functioning is caused by the hoarding.

Hoarding has been recognised as a metal health issue since Community Care published ‘Hoarding and self-neglect – what social workers need to know

Learning from London Safeguarding Adult Reviews

London SAR Task and Finish Group recently commissioned an analysis of the nature and content of 27 Safeguarding Adults reviews commissioned and completed by London Safeguarding Adults Boards since the implementation of the Care Act 2014 on 1st April 2015 up to 30th April 2017. 17 reviews were submitted to the project for analysis.

The purpose of the project was to consider the establishment of a repository of London SAR's. The is would allow for the development of quality markers, disseminate relevant lessons and methods to measure the impact of learning from SAR's. The repository would also hold information on reviewers and methodologies.

Read the report to see the results of the analysis project.

Hoarding and Self-Neglect Briefing from the LSAB

Read our briefing on hoarding and self-neglect.

LSAB Self-Neglect Learning Seminar

Thanks to all those that attended our learning seminar. As promised to you at the event here is the presentation for you. 

Here are links to some good background documents & briefings on hoarding and self-neglect.

In particular:

SCIE Self Neglect Managers Briefing March 2015 by Suzy Braye, David Orr and Michael Preston-Shoot

British Psychological Society Hoarding 2015 - A Psychological Perspective on Hoarding

The clutter image rating clearly illustrates the wide range of clutter in different rooms from clear to extreme.


Self- Help to De-Hoard Your Home

If you feel you are hoarding in your home and would like to help yourself de-hoard below are links to advice, information and top tips on how you can achieve this.



New Training Resource from Safeguarding Adults in Gloucestershire

“Am I YOUR Job?” is a brand new trainer resource (training session plan and video) on Self-Neglect from Safeguarding Adults in Gloucestershire.


Criminal Exploitation of vulnerable adults: County Lines & Cuckooing

What is cuckooing?

Criminal gangs target the homes of vulnerable people to be used for drug dealing – a process known as “cuckooing” after the “Cuckoo” bird that invades other bird’s nests. Victims are often left with little choice but to co-operate.

Drug dealers will often approach the vulnerable person offering money or free drugs to use their home for dealing. In some instances after providing free drugs, the dealers will then force the person to sell drugs for them in order to    ‘re-pay’ their drug debts.

These criminals are selective about who they target, a lot of the time victims are lonely, isolated, frequently drug users themselves and can already be known to the police.

“Cuckooing” means the drug dealers can operate from a property rather than the street, which is out of sight from the police making it a very attractive option. They can then use the premises to deal drugs from, which is difficult for the police to monitor.  

What to do if you suspect a property is being ‘cuckooed’?

Call Metropolitan Police Service on 101 or 999 in an emergency to report drug-related information.

If you don’t want to speak to the police directly, you can call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Criminal Exploitation of children and vulnerable adults: Updated County Lines Guidance

The government has published refreshed County Lines Guidance. The guidance is primarily aimed at frontline staff who work with children, young people and potentially vulnerable adults.

If you’re a professional working in social care, education, health, housing, benefits, law enforcement (police) and related partner organisations this guidance is for you.

Criminal exploitation of children and vulnerable adults is a geographically widespread form of harm that is a typical feature of county lines activity. It is a harm which is relatively little known about or recognised by those best placed to spot its potential victims.

The guidance is intended to explain the nature of this harm to enable you, the professional, to recognise its signs and respond appropriately so that potential victims get the support and help they need.

Like other forms of abuse and exploitation, county lines exploitation:

  • Can affect any vulnerable adult over the age of 18 years;
  • Can still be exploitation even if the activity appears consensual;
  • Can involve force and/or enticement-based methods of compliance and is often accompanied by violence or threats of violence;
  • Can be perpetrated by individuals or groups, males or females, and young people or adults; and
  • Is typified by some form of power imbalance in favour of those perpetrating the exploitation. Whilst age may be the most obvious, this power imbalance can also be due to a range of other factors including gender, cognitive ability, physical strength, status, and access to economic or other resources.

As so little is known about this type of abuse the national picture on county lines continues to develop but there are recorded cases of:

  • Both males and females being exploited;
  • White British children and young people being targeted because gangs perceive they are more likely to evade police detection but a person of any ethnicity or nationality may be exploited;
  • The use of social media to make initial contact with children and young people;
  • Class A drug users being targeted so that gangs can takeover their homes (known as ‘cuckooing’).

    What to do if you are a professional who is concerned

    Any practitioner working with a vulnerable person who they think may be at risk of county lines exploitation should follow their local safeguarding guidance and share this information with Lewisham Council’s social care services. If you believe a person is in immediate risk of harm, you should contact the police.

    Read the full Guidance for more detailed information on County Lines exploitation.

    Promotional and digital resources to support your work on addressing County Lines in Lewisham.

    For additional information on cuckooing, please see the 'Introduction to Cuckooing' presentation

    CONTEST and the Prevent Strategy

    What is CONTEST and the Prevent Strategy?

    The Prevent Strategy is one of the key elements of CONTEST, the Government's counter- terrorism strategy and it aims to stop people from being drawn into terrorist-related activity. Prevent has strong links to safeguarding because vulnerable adults and children can be susceptible to radicalisation and recruitment into violent extremist and terrorist organisations.

    CONTEST has four strands:

    • Protect: Strengthen our protection against terrorist attack.
    • Prepare: Mitigate the impact of an attack.
    • Pursue: Stop a terrorist attack.
    • Prevent: Stop people from becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism by:
      • responding to the ideological challenge of terrorism and the threat we face from those who promote it,
      • preventing people from being drawn into terrorism and ensuring that they are given appropriate advice and support,
      • working with sectors and institutions where there are risks of radicalisation that we need to address.

    What does the Prevent Duty mean for Statutory Organisations in Lewisham?

    Since 2015, statutory agencies have a duty under the Counter Terrorism & Security Act "to have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism". This means that local authorities should:

    • Establish strategic and operational links with other specified authorities,
    • Facilitate the assessment of risk for specified authorities, including providing advice and sharing threat assessments based on the Counter Terrorism Local Profiles (CTLP),
    • Provide a range of training products (including but not limited to Workshops to Raise Awareness of Prevent - WRAP) to all specified authorities,
    • Understand the full range of bodies affected by the new duties, and ensure they understand their responsibilities,
    • Embed Prevent into commissioning, procurement, and grant funding processes,
    • Embed Prevent into Safeguarding Policies and ensure all providers are signed up to local Safeguarding arrangements. In Lewisham, work has been taking place to ensure that all relevant agencies are complying with their obligations under the 2015 Counter Terrorism & Security Act. This includes delivering briefings, training and advice.

    Image of London Brough of Lewisham logo

    Lewisham Prevent Service

    London Borough of Lewisham Prevent are available to assist agencies in complying with their Counter Terrorism Act duties. The support offer includes: 

    • Prevent in Lewisham operates a Strategic Board
    • Prevent Delivery Group 
    • Multi-Agency Safeguarding Panel – Channel

    Compliance in Lewisham

    • The provision of Workshops to Raise Awareness of Prevent (WRAP training for frontline staff),
    • Management briefings regarding Prevent Duty compliance,
    • Coordination of strategic and operational groups,
    • The provision of Prevent-related resources and dissemination of relevant information.

    Safeguarding vulnerable people against radicalisation and extremism

    There have been several cases where extremist groups have attempted to radicalise vulnerable adults. This can include justifying political, religious, sexist, or racist violence, or to steer individuals towards an ideology of extremism and intolerance. A vulnerable adult might be groomed and radicalised into carrying out acts of violence and cause significant harm to others.

    There are several ways in which vulnerable adults can be at risk of radicalisation.

    • They can be groomed either online or in person by people seeking to draw them into extremist activity.
    • Vulnerable adults can be radicalised online via networks or online chat platforms.
    • Grooming can also be carried out by those who hold harmful, extremist beliefs, including peer or family members who have an influence over the person's life.
    • People can be exposed to violent, anti-social, extremist imagery and narratives which can lead to normalising intolerance of others and extremist ideology.

    All agencies play a vital role in ensuring vulnerable adults and our communities are safe from the threat of radicalisation, extremist ideologies and terrorism.

    If you are concerned that a vulnerable adult or other family members may hold extremist views or are at risk of being radicalised, it is important to ensure that they receive support to protect them from being drawn into terrorism.

    Making a Referral

    If you are are a professional or work in the voluntary sector and are worried about a vulnerable person you should follow your own organisation’s safeguarding procedures.

    If you are a member of the public your concerns should be reported to:

    London Borough of Lewisham Gateway
    020 8314 7777 (Lines are open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm)

    In an emergency always dial 999.

    If you have any questions regarding Prevent in Lewisham contact the Prevent Manager by email

    Channel Awareness

    This training package is for anyone who may be asked to contribute to, sit on, or even run a Channel Panel. It is aimed at all levels, from a professional required to input and attend a Channel Panel meeting for the first time, to a member of staff new to their role and organising a panel meeting. It covers an introduction to what Channel is, how it operates in the local area, and how to organise a Channel Panel for the first time. It also covers information sharing, including how, when and with whom to share information of a Channel case.

    Public Advice

    • If you see or hear anything that could be terrorist-related, trust your instincts and call the Anti-Terrorist Hotline on 0800 789 321.
    • If you think you have seen a person acting suspiciously, or if you see a vehicle, unattended package or bag which might be an immediate threat, move away and call 999.
    • If you are involved in an incident follow police advice to: 'RUN, HIDE AND TELL 
    • Download the citizenAID App , which provides safety and medical advice from Google Play, Apple App or the Windows Store, for free.  

    Prevent Support and Advice

    You can contact the Prevent team directly and we will be more than happy to provide training, advice and support. However all referrals this should be done in addition to your usual safeguarding referral pathway.

    Contact the Lewisham Prevent Team for support and information on fulfilling the duty.  

    Lewisham Prevent Service Training

    Prevent Referrals

    Workshop to Raise Awareness of Prevent (WRAP)

    Target Group:  All professionals working with vulnerable adults in the Borough of Lewisham.

    The session is intended to:

    • Develop an understanding of the Prevent Strategy & roles within it.
    • Develop existing expertise and professional judgement in relation to extremism and radicalisation or recruitment to extremist groups.
    • Increase awareness of the national / international picture of extremism and terrorism.
    • Raise awareness of the links between online risks and radicalisation.
    • Improve confidence to raise concerns.
    • Raise awareness of the Channel interventions, safeguarding the individual.
    • Increase the whole organisations capacity to prevent extremism and safeguard vulnerable people.

    The webinars will include a presentation and Q&A session.

    Hosted by Lewisham Prevent Team

    The training is for anyone who has been through the Prevent awareness eLearning or a Workshop to Raise Awareness of Prevent (WRAP), and so already understands Prevent and of their role in safeguarding vulnerable people. 

    The package shares best practice on how to articulate concerns about an individual and ensure that they are robust and considered.

    It is aimed at anyone who may be able to notice signs of vulnerability to radicalisation and seeks to give them confidence in referring on for help if appropriate. It is also designed for those (for example line managers) who may receive referrals and need to consider how to respond, whether that be establishing more context, or reaching out to partner agencies for support.

    The Lewisham Prevent Service offer bespoke training packages designed to meet the needs of the audience. Contact the Lewisham Prevent Service to find out more and book your training event.


    Prevent Home Office awareness eLearning

    The Prevent awareness eLearning has recently been refreshed. This includes updates to reflect the recommendations from the Parsons Green review, updated information following the change in threat and recent attacks, and new case studies. A link to the training is below. 


    Prevent Referrals E-Learning


    Guidance and Further Reading

    The Prevent Duty guidance for partners and Local Authorities

    Information on Channel

    Home Office guide for schools about social media and radicalisation

    How people become radicalised

    Taylorfitch. Bringing Newsletters to life