17 June 2022
Yorkshire Ambulance Service will focus on key safeguarding topics and themes to mark Safeguarding Week which starts on Monday 20 June 2022.
Safeguarding means protecting a person’s health, wellbeing and human rights and enabling them to live free from harm, abuse, and neglect. It is an integral part of providing high-quality health care and we have a duty to recognise and respond to children, young people and adults who are, or have the potential to be, at risk.
We will join other organisations throughout the UK to mark the awareness event by providing information about everything from safeguarding referrals, safer sleep for babies, county lines, self-neglect/hoarding and female genital mutilation (FGM).
Last year our staff made 15,422 safeguarding referrals and 12,622 requests for social care assessments.
Domestic abuse is defined as an incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive, threatening, degrading and violent behaviour, including sexual violence, in the majority of cases by a partner or ex-partner, but also by a family member or carer. It is very common. In the vast majority of cases it is experienced by women and is perpetrated by men.
Exposure to domestic abuse has a direct impact on children and can affect their physical health and mental wellbeing. This short video featuring NSPCC experts explains why domestic abuse is a safeguarding and child protection issue.
You do not have to wait for an emergency situation to find help. If domestic abuse is happening to you, it's important to tell someone and remember you're not alone. Visit the NHS website for details of where to get help.
'County lines’ is defined as ‘gangs and organised criminal networks involved in exporting illegal drugs into one or more importing areas within the UK, using dedicated mobile phone deal lines'. Tackling 'county lines' is a national priority. The Government’s National County Lines Coordination Centre (NCLCC) aims to measure the threat of 'county lines', focus resources on the most serious offenders, and work closely with its partners to reduce associated harms.
Public Health England's County Lines exploitation: applying All Our Health gives information about 'county lines' and modern slavery, advice for healthcare professionals, and a list of resources, further reading and examples of best practice.
FGM includes any mutilation of a female’s genitals, including the partial or total removal of the external genitalia for so-called cultural or other non-medical reasons. It is medically unnecessary, extremely painful and has serious health consequences, both at the time when the mutilation is carried out and in later life. FGM is illegal and is a child protection issue.
The next few weeks are commonly known amongst anti-FGM campaigners, not without good reason, as the ‘cutting season’. This horrific name marks a time of year when many young girls are taken abroad to have FGM performed, in order that they can ‘heal’ over the long summer holiday period – mainly to avoid detection when they return to school.
Frontline staff are crucial in identifying and protecting against FGM, so the NHS must be even more vigilant in the coming weeks and take every possible action to prevent this abhorrent practice.
More information is available on the NHS website.
Produced by: Corporate Communications Department