Vulnerable Adults Policy

The Royal Drawing School is committed to keeping all adults taking part in its activities safe from harm. Where 'vulnerable adults' are accessing our programmes then additional care will be taken to ensure that they are recognised and kept safe.

Safeguarding is about protecting certain people who may be in vulnerable circumstances. These people may be at risk of abuse or neglect due to the actions (or lack of action) of another person. In these cases, the School has to work together with public services to identify people at risk, and put steps in place to help prevent abuse or neglect.

We do this by:

  • Valuing, listening to and respecting vulnerable adults.
  • Following safe recruitment procedures for all staff, self-employed tutors and artist models working with vulnerable adults.
  • Ensuring everyone working with vulnerable adults receives this policy and ongoing support and supervision.
  • Ensuring that safeguarding and promoting the welfare of vulnerable adults is embedded in our contract through the training and activities we provide for staff.
  • Publishing our Vulnerable Adults Policy online and circulating it to everyone to whom it applies along with our Safeguarding Code of Conduct
  • Ensuring designated safeguarding persons stay up to date with current best safeguarding practice and advice from relevant external agencies.
  • The School will ensure that staff who will work alone with vulnerable adults will have a DBS Check.
  • If the School dismisses a member of staff because they have harmed a vulnerable adult, the School will inform the Independent Safeguarding Authority.

Defining Vulnerability

Who are vulnerable adults?
A person who is or may be in need of community care services by reason of disability, age or illness; and is unable to take care of themselves without help and may therefore be unable to protect themselves from harm or exploitation.

An adult is considered 'vulnerable' if they receive a health, personal or social care service from a professional. Personal services would include, for example, help with financial matters, feeding, washing or dressing.

The School encounters a relatively small number of adults on their public programmes and academic courses who fall into the 'vulnerable adult' category.

For issues relative to the support and welfare of students, tutors and models, please refer to the separate Students, Tutors and Models Support policy.

Examples of vulnerable adults:

  • An elderly person who requires help with their physical care
  • A person suffering from dementia
  • A person with a disability that requires the help of a carer
  • A person with a learning disability that makes independent living difficult

Defining Abuse

Abuse and neglect take many forms. Abuse can lead to a violation of someone's human and civil rights by another person or persons. Abuse can be physical, financial, verbal or psychological. It can be the result of an act or a failure to act. Abuse can occur in any relationship and may result in significant harm or exploitation.

Categories of abuse include the following:

Physical abuse: any type of violence, restraint or misuse of medication.
Domestic violence: psychological, physical, financial or emotional abuse including 'honour' based violence
Sexual abuse: sexual harassment, rape, indecent exposure or exposure to pornography, pressure to consent a sexual act or to witness a sexual act
Psychological abuse: emotional abuse, threats of harm or abandonment, humiliation, harassment, verbal abuse or cyber bullying
Neglect: acts of omission in terms of physical, emotional or medical care including self­ neglect with regards to personal hygiene, health or surroundings.
Financial abuse: theft, fraud, scamming, coercion in relation to financial arrangements Discrimination: harassment, slurs or bad treatment because of race, gender, age, identity, religion, sexual orientation or religion.
Discrimination: harassment, slurs or bad treatment because of race, gender, age, identity, religion, sexual orientation or religion    

Reporting Allegations and Concerns

What to do in the event of suspected abuse?
Any allegation or suspicion of abuse must be reported immediately to the designated vulnerable adults persons listed below. The school will then take appropriate steps in place to help prevent abuse or neglect.

Some types of abuse are illegal, and in these cases adults who lack capacity are protected by the same law as everyone else.

If the School, or anyone who works for the School, suspects that a crime against a vulnerable adult has taken place, we will refer the matter to the police - as we would for any other persons under our employ or in our programmes.

If an incident of abuse is thought to be a criminal offence, the School will refer it to the police.

Examples of actions that may be criminal include: physical assault, psychological assault, sexual assault and rape, theft, fraud of other forms of financial exploitation, and certain forms of discrimination on the grounds of race or gender.

Because deciding whether a case should be referred to the police is not always clear, decisions to involve the police will be taken by the designated vulnerable adult persons listed below on behalf of the School.

Reporting procedures are outlined in the diagram at the end of this document.

Designated Adult Vulnerable Persons

Academic Programme student, faculty tutor:
For Young Artists and Foundation Year programme students:
Daniel McAuliffe
For Drawing Year and Public Programme Students:
Julia Balchin

Members of staff: Clemence Viel

Witnessing Abuse

Take the following steps if you witness abuse of to report an abuse: 

  • Make sure that the person is safe
  •  Listen calmly to the person
  • Talk reassuringly to the person
  • Explain that you must inform your senior staff
  • Tell them that with their consent they can get help and support
  • Make an accurate report using the persons own words
  • Describe the circumstances with which it occurred
  • Keep person informed of all follow-on proceedings

Reporting Procedures

Vulnerable persons reporting procedures diagram

Key Contacts

The School's Dedicated Vulnerable Adults Persons

Public Programme, Drawing Year:
Julia Balchin
Tel: 0207 613 8529

Foundation Year
Daniel McAuliffe
Tel: (via Clemence Viel) 0207 613 8509

If the report concerns a member of staff:
Clemence Viel
Tel: 0207 613 8509

Social Services

Important Local Contact Numbers

A vulnerable adult with a care plan may be able to provide contact details for their team. If not below are the numbers for the Hackney based teams who may re-direct you to the relevant local authority.

Hackney Safeguarding Adults Team
Tel: 020 8356 5782

Hackney Council Out of Hours Team
Tel: 020 8356 2300

Information and Assessment Team
(For people not currently receiving care services)
Tel: 020 8356 6262

Hackney Domestic Violence and Hate Crime Team
Tel: 0800 056 0905 (Freephone)
Tel: 020 8356 4459 (Enquiries)

Learning Disability Service
Tel: 020 8356 7444

Mental Health Care for Older People and Dementia Care Team
Tel: 020 3222 8500

In an emergency, call 999
To make a report that is not an emergency, dial 111

Stop Hate Uk

Tel: (24 Hour Freephone) 0800 138 162