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Suspected abuse or neglect of a vulnerable adult

We believe that every adult has the right to be treated with dignity, have their choices respected and live a life free from fear.

Disability, illness or frailty means that many adults over the age of 18 have to rely on other people to help them in their day-to-day living. Sometimes it is because they have to depend on others that they could become more susceptible to risk, very often from people they know such as a relative, friend, neighbour or paid carer.

What is abuse?

Abuse can take many forms and all of them are distressing.

  • Physical, for example hitting, slapping, pushing or physically restraining, or the mismanagement of medication.
  • Emotional or psychological, for example shouting and swearing to make a person afraid.
  • Sexual, for example unwanted touching, kissing or sexual intercourse.
  • Financial, for example money or belongings taken under pressure or stolen without consent.
  • Neglectful, for example not being properly cared for, mismanaging medication or being denied privacy, choice or social contact.
  • Discriminatory, for example suffering abuse or neglect on the grounds of religion, culture, gender, sexuality or disability.  
  • Self neglect, for example  some people neglect their own health and social care needs

How can we help?

Abuse can take place in a person's own home, in a residential or nursing home or a day centre or hospital. Unfortunately those being abused are often the least likely to bring the situation to anyone's attention.

If you see, or know of, a worrying situation please do not ignore it. Get in touch with us and we will do something about it. This may mean acting directly on your information and/or contacting other services to put an end to an abusive or neglectful situation.

We will also provide information and offer practical advice to the person suffering abuse, so that they can make an informed choice about any help they might need, or any action they may wish to take. If they are unable to make an informed choice, care will be taken to support and protect them.

How to get in touch

The Blackburn with Darwen Safeguarding Adults Team is the first point of contact for all referrals and general enquiries. You can contact them from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday on (01254) 585949.  In an emergency out of normal office hours contact the Emergency Duty Team on (01254) 587547, or contact the Police on (01254) 51212 or dial 999.

Concerns about a child being abused

If you are concerned about a child being abused please click here.

Safeguarding adults policies, procedures and forms

Click here to view the safeguarding adults policies, procedures and forms.

Easy read information about adult abuse

Please click here to download an easy read leaflet explaining the different types of adult abuse and how to get help if you or someone you know is being abused.

Local Safeguarding Adults Board and Local Safeguarding Children's Board

The Local Safeguarding Adults Board and Local Safeguarding Children's Board are partnerships of local organisations that work together to safeguard children and adults in Blackburn with Darwen.

For more information on the Local Safeguarding Adults Board visit their website

For more information on the Local Safeguarding Children's Board visit their website


Animations explore issues around domestic abuse

A new series of animations have been produced to raise awareness of domestic abuse and signpost to areas of local help and support.

The three short films have been produced by Linnell Communications in partnership with Blackburn with Darwen Council, Lancashire Police, local substance misuse provider CGL, domestic abuse specialist support service Changing Lives and other local organisations.

The characters depicted in the animations are voiced by local people from Blackburn with Darwen who felt strongly about sharing their experiences to urge others in a similar situation to access the help that is available locally.

They are aimed at those in three key stages of life: the young, the working/middle aged and older people.

Titled 'Shouting Outside Windows', 'A Big Can of Worms' and 'Getting to be Me' the three short films depict a range of characters talking about their experiences of domestic abuse, where alcohol or drugs are sometimes the catalyst.

You can view the animations here:

'Shouting Outside Windows'

'A Big Can of Worms'

'Getting to be Me'


Other useful contacts

Blackburn with Darwen Safeguarding Adults Team
Address: Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council, King William Street, Blackburn, BB1 7DY
Phone: (01254) 585949. For out of hours emergencies call (01254) 587547 or contact the Police on (01254) 51212 or dial 999.

Local Safeguarding Children's and Adults Board (Blackburn with Darwen)
Address: Blackburn with Darwen Safeguarding Unit, Lower Ground Floor, Blackburn Town Hall, King William Street, Blackburn, BB1 7DY
Phone: (01254) 585737

Blackburn & Darwen District Without Abuse
Address: The WISH Centre, 43 King St Blackburn BB2 2DH
Phone: 01254 260465 (7 days a week, 9am - 5pm), outside of these hours 0808 2000 247

Action on Elder Abuse
Address: PO Box 60001, Streatham, SW16 9BY
Phone: 080 8808 8141
Fax: 020 8696 9328

Ann Craft Trust (ACTing Against the Abuse of Children and Adults with Learning Disabilities)
Address: Centre for Social Work, University of Nottingham, University Park, Nottingham, NG7 2RD
Phone: 0115 9515400
Fax: 0115 9515232

Please contact me             
about this service

The Local Safeguarding Adults Board has produced an easy read leaflet about adult abuse.

The 'What is adult abuse?' leaflet explains the different types of abuse and what to do if you or someone you know is being abused.

To download the leaflet please click here.

The important thing is that the abuse stops.

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