Safeguarding Children and Vulnerable Adults

Safeguarding is everybody's business we all have a part to play in preventing, identifying and reporting neglect and abuse of children and vulnerable adults. We have put measures in place and work with other agencies/organisations to protect those that cannot protect themselves.

Key Contacts


If a child or young person is in immediate danger, left alone or missing and/or a vulnerable adult is at immediate risk, you should contact the emergency services immediately on 999.


Members of the public can raise their concerns with their point of contact at East Herts District Council on 01279 655261 and ask for Jonathan Geall or directly with Hertfordshire County Council.

You can also make a report online:

Child Sexual Exploitation

If you feel a child is being abused

  • Call the Police: 101 (non emergency) or 999 (for emergency use only)
  • Children's Services (including out of hours): 0300 123 4043
  • Family Lives offer a 24/7 free phone number: 0808 800 2222. Gingerbread can offer advice to lone parents on free phone 0800 802 0925 between 10am to 4pm Monday to Friday.

If you think you've been sexually exploited

  • Call the Police: 101 (non emergency) or 999 (for emergency use only), or Children's Services: 0300 123 4043
  • Call Crimestoppers anonymously 24/7 on: 0800 555 11.
  • ChildLine is a free, confidential helpline for all young people: 0800 1111. You can ring the NSPCC helpline on: 0808 800 5000.

Mental Capacity

The council recognises that the Mental Capacity Act 2005 provides a framework to empower and protect people who may lack capacity to make some decisions for themselves, or who have capacity and want to make preparations for a time when they may lack capacity in the future. 

Someone who lacks capacity due to an illness or disability (such as a mental health problem, dementia or a learning disability) may have one or more of the following issues: 

  • cannot understand information given to them to make a particular decision
  • cannot retain that information long enough to be able to make the decision
  • cannot use or weigh up the information to make the decision
  • have difficulty in communicating their decision. 

East Herts safeguarding leads will work with the appropriate partners to take the mental capacity act provisions into account when responding to reported abuse in their district. Any concerns regarding mental capacity are raised with either the Head of Housing and Health or the Service Manager – Community Wellbeing and Partnerships as safeguarding leads.