Over £100k allocated to board that supports vulnerable adults

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The funding was announced after a review found that policing Jersey’s top five high-demand families – who have wide-ranging issues such as drug and alcohol dependency, domestic violence and mental-health problems – over a three-year period cost £775,000.

The review also revealed that homeless people were ‘often excluded’ from services, leaving the Shelter Trust to manage individuals with complex needs.

Forty recommendations were made in the independent reviews into Jersey’s safeguarding arrangements for adults and adults with learning disabilities, which were published yesterday.

Glenys Johnston, chairwoman of the Safeguarding Adult Partnership Board, yesterday unveiled an action plan showing how the board intended to fulfil the recommendations.

She said £101,334 had been allocated by the Council of Ministers to put the proposals in motion.

Among the proposals is the creation of a panel – which is expected to launch in the coming weeks – to help support adults who have complex needs but who do not require intervention from the board.

The panel is being formed as the review found that ‘safeguarding adult procedures were being used in the absence of alternative effective mechanisms to manage complex needs’. Latest figures show that of the 389 referrals made to the board in 2017, 150 were inappropriate.

Mrs Johnston said: ‘Both reviews came to similar conclusions. They found evidence of good practice, and could see that adults “at risk” who were known to adult safeguarding were supported by safeguarding plans.

‘However, they also found that there was an
urgent need to improve practice. We need
agencies to work together and get involved earlier, so people are protected promptly. This would reduce the number of inappropriate referrals.’

She added that the board was also introducing
a ‘Making Safeguarding Personal’ approach, explaining that ‘it was about not doing things to people but doing things with them’.

Last year the police identified 900 individuals who required support or intervention.

Of these, 135 were repeat referrals.

Det Supt Stewart Gull, vice-chairman of the Safeguarding Adult Partnership Board, added: ‘I think, in part, the findings were reassuring as they demonstrated that actually these individuals with the greatest need were being appropriately supported.

‘What it also showed was that actually there were significant needs of other individuals that didn’t meet a safeguarding threshold but needed some form of intervention or support.’

He added that the police were often called to cases which involved concerns about mental health, drugs and alcohol issues and that without help these people fell either ‘inadvertently or deliberately’ into the criminal justice system.

‘We are developing a new panel that will start to convene either later this month or March at the latest to bring appropriate partners together in order to ensure, as far as possible, that for the individuals who don’t meet the safeguarding threshold there is appropriate support – for example from the parishes or social care,’ Det Supt Gull said.

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