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General Safeguarding Advice

What to look out for...

Below are some examples of safeguarding concerns to look out for to best protect vulnerable adults, children and families during the Covid-19 outbreak.

Always THINK FAMILY! Whether your safeguarding concern be for a child or an adult – who else is in the household that could be affected?

Physical, sexual and emotional abuse

  • Increased stress levels in the household due to self-isolation and those at risk not being able to flee or leave
  • Children not seeing trusted adults regularly
  • Living with perpetrators who may have more control over a family
  • Children of separated parents not being able to move between households

Financial Abuse and Exploitation

  • Financial abuse from people you don't know offering to do the shopping for you
  • Vulnerability to loan sharks because of reduction or loss of income
  • Overcharging for goods and services or selling things at a premium
  • Zero-hour contracts or reduced or no work and the take up of loan sharks
  • An increase in potential scammers targeting those self-isolating

Inappropriate befriending

  • People being targeted for support by people they don't know who don't belong to an organised group


  • Individuals not going out for essentials for fear of catching the virus.

Stress placed on adult or young carers

  • A carer needing to self-isolate or even becoming ill that could lead to unintended abuse because of stress and reduced access to support and respite


  • A decision not to provide care to someone due to real or perceived Covoid-19 symptoms
  • Lack of access to safe places and resources such as school and free school meals
  • Increased risk of poverty to a household

People sleeping rough or homeless

  • Lack of knowledge and clarity of the virus risks, symptoms and actions to be taken
  • Access to handwashing facilities

Mental health and substance misuse

  • An increase in episodes of mental health or relapses of parents due to reduced direct support
  • Isolation from friends and support network
  • Anxiety about friends and family’s health
  • Uncertainty about the pandemic

Criminal exploitation

  • Increased vulnerability due to being out of school and usually ‘safe’ routines.

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