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How to report concerns

Below we explain how to report possible abuse or neglect of an adult with care and support needs.

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To report a crime

In an emergency, call the police on 999.

If the person is not in immediate danger, call the police on 101.


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To seek initial advice

Call the Safeguarding Adult Service, Consultation Line on 01865 328232 (Monday to Friday).

This is only for new concerns, where you are unsure if it is a safeguarding issue.  It is not for discussion of open safeguarding cases.

NB The Safeguarding Adults Service will ask you to complete the form below if, after discussion, the issue is deemed to be a safeguarding one.


To formally report concerns

The OSAB Threshold of Needs Matrix outlines in which circumstances professionals should raise a safeguarding concern, if they think a person is experiencing abuse or neglect.  Ensure you have spoken to the person you are referring, before making the referral.  The Safeguarding Adults Service will contact the person being referred and are likely to disclose the source of the referral (when referred by a professional).

If a formal concern needs to be raised, please visit Oxfordshire County Council’s Raising Safeguarding Concerns page  NB The Safeguarding Adults Board is not the owner of this form and does not deal with individual safeguarding concerns. This is the role of the County Council’s Safeguarding Adults Service.

All information is treated with the utmost confidentiality and sensitivity. Both the referrer, and the person who is being abused, will be contacted. And the person who is being abused will be included in the decision-making process.

If you need to raise a concern outside of standard office hours and the concern is urgent, please call the Emergency Duty Service on 0800 833 408.

If your concerns are about someone not receiving the level of care you think they should, they may need a Care Needs Assessment.  Please visit Oxfordshire County Council’s Assessment form for professionals page to gain access to the online referral form.

What Happens Next?

Every concern raised about the possible abuse of an adult at risk is taken seriously.

When a concern is raised it goes direct to the Safeguarding Adults Service, Oxfordshire County Council.

The wishes of the adult at risk will always be listened to and acted upon, and then a decision will be made about what needs to happen next.

The next step may be a formal Section 42 enquiry, which is likely to involve further discussions with professionals and relevant others to ensure the individual’s safety.

Any safeguarding plan will try to ensure the best possible outcome for the adult at risk is achieved.

In Oxfordshire, there is a very good track record in achieving this goal.