People in the Western Isles are being urged to act on their instinct if they think an adult is being harmed, neglected or taken advantage of.

The Western Isles Adult Protection Committee is supporting the Scottish Government’s ‘Seen Something? Say Something’ campaign, aimed at raising awareness of adult harm and encouraging people to act on their gut instincts that somebody may be experiencing harm, or is at risk of it.

The Western Isles Adult Protection Committee draws its membership from senior staff in social work, housing services, NHS Western Isles, Police Scotland, and the Third Sector. Its principal functions are to ensure the best level of cooperation across local services, take an overview of professional activity in adult protection, and promote training for frontline staff. 

Adult harm can take many forms from physical, psychological, sexual or financial exploitation to neglect, with those who can’t look after or stand up for themselves through factors such as personal circumstances, physical or learning disability, age, illness or infirmity being at more risk. The campaign also aims to educate on the warning signs that could indicate an adult is at risk such as unexplained cuts and bruises, or refusal to talk about injuries, confusion where their money has gone, or the appearance of nervousness around certain people.

Malcolm Smith, Chair of the Western Isles Adult Protection Committee, said: “There is a rolling programme of training for frontline staff in the Comhairle, NHS and Third Sector. This training is coordinated across services, linking adult protection, child protection, domestic abuse and alcohol and drug misuse. The detail of any of these aspects of public protection may be very complex, but the core message is always simple: if something feels wrong, say something, get it checked out.”

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