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Safeguarding older people from abuseCritical contexts to policy and practice$
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Angie Ash

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9781447305668

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447305668.001.0001

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Cultures and contexts of complicity

Cultures and contexts of complicity

(p.121) Eight Cultures and contexts of complicity
Safeguarding older people from abuse

Angie Ash

Policy Press

This chapter considers the apparent complicity illustrated in a professional ‘turning a blind eye’ to poor or inadequate support to older people. Contextual influences on practice are discussed through examination of two public reports published over 45 years apart: Sans Everything and the 2013 Francis Report on the Mid Staffordshire Foundation NHS Trust in England. The chapter discusses whistle blowing, drawing on Adams and Balfour’s work on ‘administrative evil’. It suggests a target-driven, standards-based regulatory and management context to adult safeguarding practice may itself create circumstances where institutional neglect and abuse of older people can take root. Rather than suggesting professionals are hapless victims of a malevolent system, the chapter suggests that chopped-up, rule-bound, target-driven contexts to health and care systems that professionals work within, may mask the harm vulnerable people using them may suffer.

Keywords:   culture of complicity, whistleblowing, administrative evil, target-driven, standards, adult safeguarding practice

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