Introducing Ieuan Watkins – Our New Safeguarding Adults in Sport Manager for Wales!

Ieuan Watkins Safeguarding Adults in Sport Wales

Ieuan Watkins is our new Safeguarding Adults in Sport Manager for Wales.

We asked Ieuan to put together a short blog post to introduce himself. Take it away, Ieuan!

Well hello everyone!

When asked to write a blog for the website on my first day, I did wonder whether it was a bit premature. I am brand new in my role and I have so much to learn.

But now, with a mighty five days’ experience, I already have loads of ideas for how we can make Welsh sports safer for Adults at Risk.

First, a little bit about me. There won’t be a lot!

I’ve just retired after 31 years of police service. I have spent many years managing public protection teams. This includes time sat on several national bodies helping to shape policy and processes throughout the UK.

I have also recently returned from secondment to the National Crime Agency. This saw me helping the Bermuda Police Service with their public protection processes. I know – tough gig!

The National Sport Centre for Wales isn’t Bermuda. But it is my new work home and I am delighted to have secured this role.

I plan to contact all sports, run training and provide lots of help and support across all of Wales. Look out for more details in future blogs, but for now I thought I would answer a question I’ve been asked a number of times already…

What is an adult at risk? is this the same as a Vulnerable Adult?

OK, so a little bit of law.

The term “Vulnerable Adult” came from some national guidance published in 2000 called “No Secrets”.

We have now moved away from this old terminology. Because adults do not consider themselves to be vulnerable all day every day, labelling people as ‘vulnerable’ is perhaps unfair. Some may even consider the term to be insulting.

The new terminology is “Adult at Risk”. This comes from The Care Act. Just to complicate things a little, there’s a different piece of legislation in Wales that uses the same terminology.

Both have very similar definitions that an “Adult at Risk”:

  • Is experiencing or is at risk of abuse or neglect.
  • Has needs for care and support, whether or not the local authority is meeting any of those needs; and
  • As a result of those needs, an Adult at Risk is unable to protect himself or herself against the abuse or neglect, or the risk of it.

So ask yourself:

Have You at Any Stage in Your Life Been an Adult at Risk?

I know I have.

I thought this would be a really important point to make in my first blog, as I have been asked about the definition several times already!

My next blog won’t be about law, but about how I can support everyone in my new role.

For now, can I challenge everyone involved in Welsh sports to consider:

• Have you got an Adults at Risk policy in your sport?
• Does your current policy use correct terminology?
• Is your organisation ‘Adult at Risk’ ready?

Get in touch if you’d like to discuss any of this!

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