Recognising the safeguarding role of housing staff

Guidance for local authority social care staff

You should:

The evidence from serious case reviews clearly shows that joint working is key to reducing the danger of abuse to people with care and support needs. Housing staff report difficulties in engaging with social care staff over concerns about risk, and being left out of joint working arrangements. [24] A high proportion of people with care and support needs live in social housing, [37] previously estimated at almost half. [10] Housing staff have a key role to play in safeguarding this group. They may, for example, receive information on anti-social behaviour that can highlight a person’s vulnerability to abuse.

The Local Government Association and Association of Directors of Adult Social Services [21] recommend that directors of adult social services ‘make sure safeguarding is embedded in corporate and service strategies across the council and partners’. This includes all social housing providers. There should be local arrangements in place to ensure that the knowledge, skills and position in the community of housing staff are recognised and utilised. Joint training and information sharing protocols may be helpful in developing better understanding of the roles of different professionals.