Adult Safeguarding week runs from 19th to 23rd October 2020. Third Sector Leaders Kirklees are running some important sessions for local groups and volunteers. Never before have citizens in our communities been so active in supporting vulnerable people. TSL Kirklees continue to offer new learning and awareness events to make sure we remain informed.
If you’re interested in attending a free session to learn more, or if you know a group or volunteer who might be, you can find out more and book your free place now…
Scams and Frauds Training
Delivered by the Financial Exploitation and Abuse Team at West Yorkshire Trading Standards
Tuesday 20th October from 10am to 12 noon
This training will be relevant to staff and volunteers who are supporting vulnerable and isolated people anywhere in Kirklees. The session will provide information on Scams and Doorstep Crimes including new Covid-related scams in the local area. Illustrated with real case studies, it will also provide an overview of the role of WY Trading Standards and how you can report a concern.
The training will be hosted by Third Sector Leaders Kirklees and delivered via Zoom.
If you’re in the process of trying to re-open your community building safely, please take a few minutes to read through the latest guidance. We’ve included links to Government updates and an example risk assessment document.
The Government have updated the rules for social distancing for meeting people indoors and outdoors.
From 14th September 2020, people from different households must not meet in groups of more than 6, either indoors or outdoors. This limit does not apply to meetings of a single household group or support bubble which is more than 6 people.
If you live in an area subject to local restrictions, we continue to advise that you should not:
socialise with people who you do not live with, unless they’re in your support bubble, in any public venue. This applies to inside and outside of the affected areas. Examples of public venues include pubs, restaurants, cafes, shops, places of worship, community centres, leisure and entertainment venues, or visitor attractions and parks.
visit friends or family in care homes, other than in exceptional circumstances. Care homes should restrict visits to exceptional circumstances only.
The ‘rule of 6’ doesn’t apply to local restriction areas. Community centres within areas that are under local restriction should take steps to make sure people do not socialise with people who they do not live with, in line with Covid-19 secure guidance.
In areas where there are local restrictions, risk assessment is key. This might mean it is not viable for you to open your community building. Nurseries running from community centres are subject to the government guidance on early years settings.
If you are in an area where there are no local restrictions, community facilities can host more than 6 people in total, but no-one should visit or socialise in a group of more than 6 – and you must follow the Covid-19 secure guidelines and ensure you have the appropriate risk assessments.
Government links and example risk assessment
Updated, 15th September 2020
The Government have updated their guidance for community facilities since we published this post. This new guidance says that activities and social groups where there is a significant likelihood of groups mixing and socialising (and where it will be difficult to prevent mingling and therefore breaking the law) should not take place in a community facility.
We encourage you to read Section 3c in this latest Government guidance for community facilities:
People who are using Covid-19 secure community facilities should limit their social interactions with anyone who they do not live with. Where activities have 6 or more people participating (where it is safe to do so and capacity permits) it is important for all parties to maintain social distancing, 2 metres or 1 metre apart, with actions taken to reduce the risk of transmission (where 2 metres is not viable) between households. You should encourage the use of face coverings and good hand hygiene on entering premises and throughout a person’s visit.
Most community buildings can continue to open, provided that you follow the guidance. However, if direct social interaction is key to the activity (and if the activity is not a support group such as victim support or mental health groups) then you probably shouldn’t be doing it.
Gatherings of over 30 in public outdoor space are not allowed in Kirklees at this time.
Please feel free to use this risk assessment as learning to support you to complete your own risk assessments:
The outbreak of Covid-19 has presented many challenges but has demonstrated how neighbourhoods and communities have pulled together, kept an eye out for each other, and supported those who are not in a position to help themselves.
Forming a Neighbourhood Watch scheme in your neighbourhood is just one opportunity that local volunteers or mutual aid groups could move forward with, continuing the amazing work already done over the past few months.
Neighbourhood Watch schemes are far more than the old cliché of ‘nosy neighbours’ and there are number of ways they can impact positively in our communities. They can:
Support neighbours struggling with Covid-19 restrictions
Create safer neighbourhoods
Build community spirit and cohesion
Enhance partnerships with other community groups
Address issues relating to anti-social behaviour
Improve quality of life and the local environment
Provide valuable information to the police
There are lots of resources available to help.
Becoming part of the West Yorkshire Police Neighbourhood Watch network will keep you informed and more alert to what is happening around you, creating a safer neighbourhood.
Safer Kirklees would like to build on the close community relationships and have a commitment to work with communities to address quality of life issues. They believe local people are best placed to understand local needs and help find the solutions to support others.
Keeping up with what is going on in our local area can be a challenge and some things are more important to us than others. Crime is something we may be unfortunate enough to have to report sometimes, but it can also be useful to be alerted to policing issues.
Helpfully, West Yorkshire Police have launched a new messenger system “West Yorkshire Community Alert” which will enable members of the public to keep in touch with local police updates.
Registration is free and you can choose to receive news and appeals, local crime information and prevention advice direct via email, text or voice message.
You can also sign up for local updates from their Neighbourhood Policing Team or Neighbourhood Watch contacts, or join a number of specialised community interest groups such as business watch, dog walkers, motorists or crime prevention etc.
Domestic abuse organisations have seen increased household tension and domestic violence due to lockdown restrictions, economic stress and fears about the Coronavirus. Increased isolation could also create an increase in abuse.
It is timely that Yorkshire Children’s Centre can announce they have launched their new telephone helpline for perpetrators of domestic abuse: “I need help to stop” – 07849 398711.
Support is available for those who wish to address their abusive behaviour to improve the lives of their partners, ex-partners and children. Domestic abuse includes physical violence, emotional abuse or any other form of coercive control.
The helpline is anonymous and confidential and provides guidance, support and advice in developing healthy relationships. If agreeable, callers can also gain further support through an online webchat session.
Modern slavery continues to be an issue in our society. If you’re engaging with vulnerable people during the Covid-19 emergency, there’s a chance you may come across victims of modern slavery.
The term ‘Modern slavery’ includes human trafficking, slavery, servitude and forced labour. Modern slavery can affect areas differently, being more common in some than others. Being aware of what to look out for and how to spot the signs can only be a good thing.
Advice and guidance differs depending on your role. First Responders have a Duty to Notify the Home Office. People in other roles should contact a First Responder Organisation, such as the Police or the Salvation Army.
All of us need to know what to look out for. The Home Office have provided some information posters. These posters cover things like spotting the signs, where support and help is available to victims and how to contact support services. Also included is important information about how you can stay safe during Covid-19 and how to safely take action to support a potential victim.
You don’t need to be sure that modern slavery is taking place, or fully understand the types and definitions, to report your concerns.
Information posters from the Home Office
This poster tells you what to look out for and how to get help:
The Kirklees Safeguarding Children Partnership provides a wide variety of resources to help professionals working with children who may have been trafficked, including guidance, policy and referral information:
Safeguarding in our communities has become a big talking point in recent weeks as many volunteers try to make sure the most vulnerable people in our neighbourhoods are kept safe. It is just as important that volunteers in Kirklees, whether part of a Mutual Aid Group, registered as a volunteer with Kirklees Council or volunteering in another capacity shouldn’t be forgotten when it comes to staying safe.
Paddock Community Trust are offering free online volunteer training courses and are encouraging any volunteers who might benefit from the training to get in touch. The course focuses on volunteer safety and everyone is welcome to participate.
The course covers:
Looking at the benefits and types of volunteering
Exploring ways to keep yourself safe when volunteering
How to keep others safe when you are volunteering
The course is a short series of one hour Zoom calls. There are two courses to choose from:
Fridays 12th June, 19th June and 26th June from 1pm to 2pm
Tuesdays 30th June, 7th July and 14th July from from 11am to 12 noon
Guide Dogs have put together some suggestions about basic communication principles to consider when you’re interacting with people who have sight loss. This doesn’t replace or override general guidance or policies about supporting people during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The advice is intended to support those who are working or volunteering with blind and partially sighted people for the first time.
You can read these suggestions on the Guide Dogs website:
The Environmental Health service at Kirklees Council is here to support local groups and organisations who are providing food during Covid-19. Our Food Safety team are offering advice, guidance and support to help you provide food safely, for the benefit of yourselves and those you are supporting. This isn’t about getting in the way of the vital work that you’re doing in our local places, but is just about helping us all to keep people safe.
The Food Safety team may call you about your work, to find out whether you need any advice. Some organisations may also need to register with Kirklees Council. This is because national food safety requirements apply to everyone who is providing food to the public at any time, whether given away free or not. We’ve listened to feedback from local groups to help make this process easier for you.
Contact the Food Safety team
The first step is just to have a conversation with the Food Safety team. Whilst we’re in the process of contacting Mutual Aid Groups, you can also contact the Food Safety Team directly, to discuss what food provision you’re offering. We’ll help you work out whether registration is required (it might not be).
The Food Safety Team can be contacted by email: firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone. Call Kirklees Council on 01484 221000 and ask for Food Safety.
What kind of activity requires registration?
Groups and organisations are working in many different ways to provide the vital support that people need in our local places. Not all activities will need registration. For example, if you’re collecting food from a supermarket or shop and delivering this straight to someone at home (without storing), you don’t need to call us or to register.
We understand that many new groups have set up and others have started new activities in order to provide essential support to our communities. So you may not already be familiar with the legislation surrounding the provision of food. If you do need to register, we want to make sure you have all the information and support you need to operate safely, in line with existing regulations. The aim is to protect you and make sure you can do what you need to.
Examples of activities that would require contact with the Food Safety team for advice or registration are:
Storing food before delivery to vulnerable people or key workers.
Cooking food for vulnerable people or key workers, especially cook and chill.
Changes in your normal food production practices – for example, changing from serving food in your venue to providing food at scale or cook and chill.
If you think you might need to register, please get in touch with the Food Safety team for advice and support. Email email@example.com or call 01484 221000 and ask for Food Safety.
Free training and tailored support
We know that there are lots of different kinds of food support being provided by local organisations. The Food Safety team can provide tailored advice, guidance and support to any organisation providing food in Kirklees.
If it’s useful for your group or organisation, we can help you to access free online Food Hygiene Level 2 training for your volunteers. This training includes important topics for people who are handling food, such as why food safety is important, temperature control, hazards and contamination, and personal health and hygiene.
If you’re providing cooked food for vulnerable members of your community, we will need to undertake a site visit. If you are providing food parcels or non-perishable items, we may only need to ask where and how you’re storing your food. If you are simply doing shopping runs for people who are self-isolating or shielding and taking the food straight away, we won’t need to speak to you.
Do make sure any foods that need refrigeration or freezing are not out of a fridge for more than 30 minutes. Please follow the Government’s advice on hand washing, protecting yourself and social distancing:
If you do receive a phone call from the Food Safety team, we hope that you will find this useful and reassuring. You are also very welcome to contact the team whenever you need advice. Please call Kirklees Council on 01484 221000 and ask for Food Safety.