Safeguarding policy

This is a summary of our safeguarding policy and procedures. For full details, please contact the safeguarding lead (details below).

The purpose of this policy statement  is: 

  • to protect from harm the children, young people and adults at risk who receive AbScent’s services. This includes the children of adults who use our services. 

  • to provide staff, volunteers and service users, with the overarching principles that guide our approach to protection of children and vulnerable adults. 

This policy applies to anyone working on behalf of AbScent, including senior managers and the board of trustees, paid staff, volunteers, sessional workers, agency staff and students.   

Although we do not directly support children and young people under the age of 18, AbScent is committed to protect children from harm, and we commit to act on situations where a child may be at risk 

AbScent welcomes adults regardless of age, disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex, or sexual orientation to benefit from information, services and support. Everyone is entitled to the same degree of protection and respect.

Our responsibility to safeguarding others

  • Valuing, listening to and respecting children and vulnerable adults.

  • Following clear procedures for dealing with disclosures and concerns about a child, young person or vulnerable adult.

  • Managing allegations against staff and volunteers in a transparent and fair manner.

  • Recording concerns and maintaining records that may be required or referred to by statutory authorities.

  • Cooperating effectively with statutory authorities.

  • Sharing a code of conduct ‘our expectations’ with staff and volunteers.

  • Recording, storing and using information professionally and securely, in line with data protection legislation and guidance.

  • Seeking express permission from individuals to use stories and photographs about them.

  • Making recruitment subject to the receipt of two satisfactory references.

  • Providing induction, training, supervision and support for staff and volunteers.

  • Managing complaints according to our complaints procedure.

  • Following best practice in health and safety at work.

  • Appointing a named person with responsibility for safeguarding, supported by a named trustee

The nominated safeguarding lead is Sarah Oakley, Executive Director. Email:


Safeguarding procedures

Step one: Listen

A person makes an allegation or raises concerns about abuse, or you assess a child or vulnerable person may be at risk.

  1. Listen to the concern, do not ask detailed questions. 

  2. Believe the person expressing concern.

  3. Reassure them they have done the right thing by telling you.

  4. Explain what you will do with the information; that you will seek advice from their local authority.

Step two: Record

Make an immediate record of the concern or allegation, include details of the referrer, any alleged victim, any alleged perpetrator/s, date and time, how received (phone, text, email, letter, in person).

Step Three: Report

Discuss what immediate action to take with the Designated Safeguarding Lead, or a colleague, if s/he is not immediately available.

If the person at risk is believed to be in immediate danger, dial 999 and alert the police. This may be because they have expressed an intention to harm themselves, or because the situation indicates they will be harmed by others.

Step Four: Consult the appropriate authorities

The Designated Safeguarding Lead will contact the relevant department (childrens’ services or adult services) at the local authority of the person who is considered at risk.

The Designated Safeguarding Lead will follow the guidance of the local authority about any further action to be taken by AbScent.