National Safeguarding Adults Week 2020 will take place from 16th-22th November. During this week, Savera UK will be shining a spotlight on the ‘One Chance Rule’ which exists to protect those at risk of ‘honour’-based abuse (HBA) and harmful practices such as forced marriage and female genital mutilation (FGM).
The ‘One Chance Rule’ is the belief that there might only be one chance to speak to someone who is at risk and, therefore, have one chance to save a life. Safeguarding is a responsibility that we all share to prevent abuse and we all have a role to play. We should all know how to recognise the signs and call out abuse, as knowledge empowers us to speak out, support and report.
All cases of HBA and harmful practices are different. Professionals who come across individuals experiencing this kind of abuse need to take the time to listen to disclosures as that may be the only opportunity that person has to get help. If a person at risk is not listened to or taken seriously and walks out of the door without immediate support and protection being offered, that one chance might be lost and a life lost too.
All professionals working with vulnerable people including: the police, the NHS, specialist agencies and other relevant services are legally obliged to make a referral to the local authority if they know or suspect someone is “a child or adult at risk”.
When working with clients, Savera UK takes all contacts very seriously and will attempt to gather as much information as possible within the first contact in order to ensure they get the help and support they need.
CEO and Founder of Savera UK, Afrah Qassim says: “The ‘One Chance Rule’ encompasses a set of rules that all professionals should abide by when working with those experiencing culturally-specific abuse.
“We hear of many cases where individuals disclose to professionals about their abuse but are unfortunately turned away such as the case of Banaz Mahmod, which was recently highlighted in the ITV drama Honour.
“Understanding HBA, recognising the signs and the risks will ensure that individuals are protected from harm.”
You can download the “One Chance Rule” leaflet here.