Over 180 people attended the Isle of Wight’s first ever Safeguarding Adults Conference on Friday 15 May 2015.
As well as providing important updates on matters such as the Care Act 2014, which means adult safeguarding becomes a statutory role within local authorities for the first time, the conference also looked at a number of issues people may not normally associate with the Island.
Jasvinder Sanghere from the charity Karma Nirvana, spoke about forced marriage and honour based violence. Jasvinder revealed at the conference that her charity has dealt with cases on the Isle of Wight, revealing it is often a hidden crime which needs sensitive handling by professionals to provide much needed support for victims.
A presentation from Detective Sergeant Matthew Gillhooly from Hampshire Constabulary talked about the issue of human trafficking and modern day slavery and a specialist anti-trafficking partnership that has been set up across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight to tackle the issue.
Although more of an issue in Hampshire than the Isle of Wight, trafficking is a growing issue nationally and members of the public need to be aware of the issues so that they can raise any concerns with the police or local authority safeguarding team.
Simon Hayes, Police and Crime Commissioner for Hampshire and the Isle of Wight, said: “The conference was a great success and I was pleased to see representatives from so many different organisations present, as well as members of the public.
“The speakers provided valuable insight into a number of specialist areas, demonstrating how each link to the Isle of Wight and what the community can do to provide support to those that need it.
“The event provided useful feedback from the Island community which will enable key partners to develop strategies that meet the needs of local people.”
Margaret Geary, independent chair of the Isle of Wight Safeguarding Adults Board, said: “It is incredibly important that we hold events like this, not only to keep professionals and members of the public updated on the issues facing our communities, but also to share examples of good practice and partnership work taking place locally.
“The role of the Isle of Wight Safeguarding Adults Board is to ensure the main statutory agencies – the Isle of Wight Council, Hampshire Constabulary, NHS organisations and the prisons and probation services, housing services, independent providers and the voluntary sector work together to safeguard adults at risk of harm.”
Martin Elliott, director of adult social services at the Isle of Wight Council, said: “The council was pleased to be able to provide practical assistance in organising the event, which was the first of its kind on the Island. We were delighted that the day was so well attended by such a wide range of organisations.”
Keynote speakers at the conference included Suzy Braye, Emeritus Professor, Sussex University (self-neglect); Rod Landman, ARC UK (mate crime/hate crime); Jasvinder Sanghera, Karma Nirvana (honour based violence and forced marriage); and Clare Foreman, Local Government Association (Care Act and making safeguarding personal).
If people are worried about an adult they should contact the Adult’s First Response Team on (01983) 814980. In an emergency, always call 999.