Cross-boundary considerations in safeguarding arrangements were originally covered in a protocol that was ratified by ADSS (Association of Directors of Social Services) in 2004. This was developed into more comprehensive guidance and published by ADASS (Association of Directors of Adult Social Services) in 2012. Its purpose was to support Councils in resolving issues when a person was placed outside their own local authority and then subsequently experienced abuse or neglect. Although originally aimed at situations where people were living in registered care homes, this was widened in the 2012 guidance to include other circumstances, such as supported living or hospital settings. It was also extended to provide specific good practice guidance where an organisational investigation was underway, which could involve a large number of service users and several different commissioning organisations.
The guidance has now been reviewed and updated to reflect new safeguarding duties under the Care Act (2014) and the accompanying Care and Support Statutory Guidance (2016). This includes, as fundamental, the person-centred, outcome-focused approach enshrined in Making Safeguarding Personal and the six national safeguarding adults principles.
The good practice guidance is not a substitute for locally agreed multi-agency safeguarding adults policies and procedures, whether at individual Safeguarding Adults Board, sub regional or regional level. Local multi-agency procedures, together with the Care Act and statutory guidance take precedence. We would encourage Safeguarding Adults Boards to familiarise themselves with this guidance in order to support partner agencies when dealing with complex cross boundary issues.
In addition, there are a number of other national guidance sources for local authorities and NHS bodies in existence which are referred to in this document. They may be relevant depending on the specific circumstances of the safeguarding enquiry and should be referred to when necessary.
We would like to acknowledge the feedback and comments received during the consultation from a number of respondents, including safeguarding adults board managers, independent SAB chairs, principal social workers and regional safeguarding networks; also to ADASS London for the inclusion of parts of the glossary from the 2015 pan-London Multi-Agency Safeguarding Policies and Procedures.
Dr Adi Cooper, OBE
Co-Chairs ADASS/LGA Safeguarding Adults Policy Network