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Safeguarding and Early Intervention

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What is Safeguarding and Early Intervention?

Safeguarding should be the first priority for all those working with and alongside people. Safeguarding is about protecting people from all forms of harm and abuse. If services or support are unsafe then they are not fit for purpose. It is therefore a priority for all public, private and third sector to deliver services and support that is safe and with limited or managed risks.

In safeguarding, early intervention seeks to address the issues raised in a concern, to deal with the situation an individual faces by looking at the root causes. It is about prevention of an issue or the prevention of further escalation for the victim. The aim is to reduce the long term impact for the victim and protect them from abuse or criminal activity.

“Early help, also known as early intervention, is support given to a family when a problem first emerges.” NSPCC

Safeguarding in legislation is around the avoidance of harm and abuse (including neglect) which focuses on child abuse and adult abuse (which we have split into elder abuse and adult at risk abuse).

Safeguarding Reviews and Domestic Homicide Reviews include the learning from events, and frequently aim to improve early detection and interventions to prevent similar events happening in the future.

The impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences, and the response for those who have been subject to them, is an area around working differently and delivering early interventions before the ACEs have a larger impact on those who have experienced them. Whilst Crime Prevention is covered under other topics, the Public Health Approach in Wales is trying to change how we prevent crime and other actions that could be early interventions that mean that issues are managed before they develop further. Violence Prevention is the current key area where early intervention is being developed using a Public Health Approach to try to prevent future violence whether that is knife crime, VAWDASV or criminal exploitation

Early intervention is also a key element for Prevent and other extremism and radicalisation problems. Hate crimes and anti-social behaviour may allow some early identification of perpetrators who can then be supported to change their behaviour.

Help and Support

For victims, families and concerned people

Report concerns about harm, abuse and neglect to the safeguarding team in your local authority (see Directory). Report it to the Police by calling 101 or report it online depending on your region of Wales – South Wales Police, Dyfed Powys Police, Gwent Police or North Wales Police. In an emergency, call 999. If you’re deaf or hard of hearing, use the Police textphone service 18000 or text 999 if you’ve pre-registered with the emergency SMS service. If you have concerns about neglect or abuse, but wish to remain anonymous, you can contact Crimestoppers.