New push to tackle adult abuse

An award-winning campaign designed to protect Birmingham’s most vulnerable adults from abuse is being relaunched next week.

The Eyes and Ears adult safeguarding campaign urges people to report their concerns if they fear a vulnerable adult is being abused and Birmingham Safeguarding Adults Board (BSAB) is hoping to repeat the success of a similar campaign in 2011 that resulted in a 30.6% increase in the total number of adult safeguarding referrals reported during the campaign compared to the same period in 2010

From next week, campaign posters will be appearing on city trains and in key public places telling people how to report concerns, with the message: ‘It’s not friendship, its abuse. Report it!’

Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, Cllr Steve Bedser, said: “This campaign highlights a very important issue. Abuse doesn’t always have to be physical, it can be financial, psychological or emotional. We’re raising awareness within the general public so that they can become the eyes and ears of adults who may be unable to protect themselves.

“The fact is that protecting our most vulnerable adult citizens from any form of abuse is everyone’s responsibility and we know from the last campaign that people will step in and voice their concerns.”

Alan Lotinga, chair of BSAB, said: “This year’s campaign is especially important as we are focusing on safeguarding vulnerable adults who have been befriended by people with the intention to abuse or commit a crime. The evidence nationally and locally suggests this is a growing problem, but front-line professionals do need help from members of the public in reporting suspected abuse of this nature.”

The Birmingham Safeguarding Adults Board was formed in 2007. It is made up of local agencies including Birmingham City Council, NHS, and West Midlands Police. The board has a shared responsibility to ensure vulnerable adults in Birmingham are safeguarded against all forms of abuse.

For any more information or to report suspected adult abuse visit