Essex County Council - Provider Hub
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Zero Tolerance to Abuse Policy

ECCs Zero Tolerance Policy

ECC has a clear policy of zero tolerance of abuse towards it's staff, and those of care providers delivering services to Essex's residents. The key points are as follows:

  • We will not tolerate any form of abuse towards our staff or the people providing care and support to our residents.
  • We will investigate all incidents of abuse reported by our staff and appropriate action will be taken.
  • In some cases we may treat the abuse as an indirect refusal of care as we cannot put staff in a position where they could be subjected to abuse.

What is defined as abuse?

Abuse can be verbal or physical. Examples of verbal abuse can be defined as, but not limited to, abuse based on someone's race, gender or sexual orientation. 

Our duties

The link between equality for health and care staff and providing good quality care is well established.

As workers in health and social care, we have to demonstrate ‘due regard' to the Public Sector Equality Duty to:

  • eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation and other conduct prohibited by the Equality Act (2010)
  • advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not
  • foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not.

As providers, your leaders and managers need to promote equality, diversity and human rights in your service, including for staff. See information provided by CQC on Equality, diversity and human rights.

How to raise an incident of abuse

You should follow the appropriate route depending on the situations outlined below. In all cases we expect providers to have systems of support and processes in place to address abuse. 

  • Complete a safeguarding referral and tell us so that we can investigate.
  • If it is by a member of your staff you should follow your own HR processes
  • Tell us via your contract manager or operational team link
  • Have your own supportive approaches in place for your staff
  • Have a process in place to deal with this as the employer, including supportive approaches in place for your staff
  • Have an approach to talk to the adult
  • Tell us via your contract manager or operational team link

Further information

Last updated: 16/03/2023