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Carers and Safeguarding 

Are you a Carer? 

Do you look after an ill, frail or disabled family member, partner or friend who cannot manage at home without help -perhaps a person with mental ill health, dementia or HIV/AIDS?

If you answer yes then you are a carer.

What is Safeguarding?

Some people are less able to protect themselves from harm and are at risk of abuse and neglect. Safeguarding aims to support adults at risk, and their carers, to retain their independence, wellbeing and choice and to live a life free from abuse and neglect.

Safeguarding adults at risk of abuse and neglect is taken very seriously by Plymouth Safeguarding Adults Board and its partner agencies (including Police, Social Care and Health Services)

Plymouth Safeguarding Adults Board recognises the important role carers have in the Safeguarding of Adults. Most carers strive to act in the best interests of the person they support. There are times, however, when carers themselves experience abuse from the person to whom they are offering care and support or from the local community in which they live. Sometimes, because of stress, tiredness or lack of information, skills or support there is a risk that the carer may harm the person they are caring for. Sadly, also, there are times when the harm is intended.

If you are the victim of abuse, or are worried that you may have caused harm to someone you are caring for, you must speak up and ask for help.

Common Risk Situations for Carers

Some situations can make it more likely for a carer to abuse the person they care for; intentionally or unintentionally, for example, if as a carer you:

* Are vulnerable or at risk yourself.

* Have unmet or unrecognised needs of your own.

* Are not sure about the cared for person’s condition or needs.

* Have unwillingly had to change your lifestyle.

* Are not receiving practical and/or emotional support from other family members.

* Are feeling emotionally and socially isolated or undervalued.

* Have other responsibilities such as family or work.

* Have no personal or private time outside the caring environment.

* Have asked for help, but problems have remained.

* Are being abused by the cared for person.

* Feel unappreciated or not supported.

Do any of these situations apply to you? If so, talk to someone and ask for help by calling 01752 668000 or visit www.plymouth.gov.uk/reportadultabuseorneglect