17 November 2023
This year’s Safeguarding Adults Week (Monday 20 to Friday 24 November 2023) has a particular
focus on financial abuse and self-neglect, while also serving as a reminder that safeguarding is the
responsibility of all Islanders.
“Safeguarding” refers to measures designed to protect the health, wellbeing, and human rights of
individuals. The measures allow children, young people and adults at risk to live free from abuse,
harm and neglect.
Abuse comes in many forms, including domestic abuse, hate crime and child neglect. It can be
intentional or unintentional, and can involve an action, or even a lack of action. Abuse violates a
person’s human rights and is often a criminal offence. It might not be witnessed or disclosed. It is
important that Islanders know what signs to look out for and how to go about reporting any
The Safeguarding Adults Week campaign is led by Sarah Whitmarsh (Named Nurse Adult
Safeguarding, Health and Community Services). The event is sponsored by the Safeguarding
Partnership Board and is supported by HCS and multi-agency partners.
Sarah Whitmarsh said: “Abuse can happen anywhere and is never acceptable, we must not tolerate
it in any form. We all have a role to play in identifying a concern and reporting it.
“We may notice something about a person we’re worried about, or a relationship the person has
with someone else. For instance, we might notice a change in a person’s appearance, attitude, or
behaviour. Whatever the situation, we need to stay aware and be alert for any warning signals.
Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility.
“We hope Islanders will take the opportunity to engage with one of the pop-up sessions to learn
more, but information on how to report any safeguarding concerns is always available at HCS and
other Government buildings, Parish Halls or online at Jersey Safeguarding Partnership Board.”
To help educate Islanders, HCS safeguarding colleagues and other Safeguarding professionals will
be holding community pop-up sessions at three different locations:
- 20 November – Jersey General Hospital (Parade entrance) from 10am to 2pm
- 21 November – Broad Street Post Office from 10am to 2pm (Financial abuse)
- 24 November – Central Market from 10am to 2pm (Self-neglect)
This includes fraud, theft, taking property without permission, assuming ownership of money or
items, scamming (which can be in person, by letter, phone and internet), coercion in relation to an
adult’s financial affairs including the writing of or changing a Will, and misuse of benefits. Financial
abuse can involve small and large amounts of money or value of property. It can be a criminal act,
insidious and can be perpetrated by people well known to the adult at risk.
Self-neglect is the inability to maintain an accepted standard of self-care, with the potential for
serious adverse consequences to the mental and/or physical health and well-being of the
individual and potentially to their neighbours and the community. It includes:
- lack of self-care – neglect of personal hygiene, nutrition, hydration and/or health, thereby
endangering safety and wellbeing; and/or
- lack of care of one’s environment – squalor and hoarding, and/or refusal of services that
would mitigate risk of harm. It can involve social isolation and can involve substance misuse or
mental health issues
Self-neglect can be a result of a conscious decision to live life in a particular way that may have an
impact on a person’s health, wellbeing or living conditions, and may have a negative impact on
other people's environments. Often in these circumstances people may be unwilling to
acknowledge there might be a problem and/or be open to receiving support to improve their
circumstances. There are various reasons why people self-neglect. Some people have insight into
their behaviour, while others do not; some may be experiencing an underlying condition such as