New statutory responsibilities for Housing Providers under the Care Act 2014

To find out more about this training programme please click here or contact us.

The Care Act 2014 comes into force on the 1st April 2015. This will place greater responsibility on social housing providers to protect vulnerable adults alongside their existing responsibility for safeguarding children. It sets out a legal framework for how local authorities and other parts of the health and care system including housing providers should protect adults at risk of abuse or neglect.

Safeguarding is aimed at people with care and support needs who may be in vulnerable circumstances and at risk of abuse or neglect. In these cases, local services must work together to spot those at risk and take steps to protect them.

The Act introduces a legal framework so key organisations and individuals with responsibilities for adult safeguarding can agree on how they must work together and what roles they must play to keep adults at risk safe.

The Act and its commencement in April is being used as an opportunity to bring in more robust safeguarding duties, which will have a range of potential consequences for social landlords and housing support providers.

The changes in legislation highlight six key areas of improvement:
• empowerment
• protection
• prevention
• proportionate responses
• partnership
• accountability

In the past there have been difficulties faced by multi-agency boards due to struggling to obtain sufficient resources and engagement from other agencies.

One of the biggest areas of change the Care act introduces is the mandatory involvement of Housing providers. Although they will be responsible for safeguarding registered social landlords will not be statutory members of the Safeguarding Adults Board.

The statutory guidance states that housing and housing support providers will need to ensure that they have clear operational policies and procedures in adult safeguarding, and that all staff are trained in recognising the symptoms of abuse and are able to respond to adult safeguarding concerns.

The Act also requires local authorities to make enquires, or ask others to make enquiries, when they think an adult with care and support needs may be at risk of abuse or neglect in their area and to find out what, if any, action may be needed. This applies whether or not the authority is actually providing any care and support services to that adult.

Information Sharing

The statutory guidance is clear that organisations must share information related to abuse or neglect with SABs. If a SAB requests information from an organisation or individual who is likely to have information which is relevant to SAB’s functions, they must share what they know with the SAB. For these SAB’s to function there needs to be an agreed information sharing protocol across the area including all members. Individuals need to be made aware of this protocol and the consequences if not ahead to.

Red Snapper Learning deliver specialised training to those who have a safeguarding remit.

This training includes:

• How to recognise and act upon the signs of abuse and neglect
• Improve information sharing and partnership working
• Raise awareness and highlight reporting systems and processes

To find out more about this training programme please click here or contact us.

The full legislation including the schedule for enactment can be found here:

The Statutory guidance can be found here: