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What is Safeguarding, and how can you help your employees?

The six principles of safeguarding are;

  • Empowerment – Supporting and encouraging people to make their own decisions and informed consent.
  • Prevention – Act before harm occurs.
  • Proportionality – The least intrusive response appropriate to the risk presented.
  • Protection – Supporting and representing those in greatest need.
  • Partnership – Working with local communities and services that help play a part in preventing, detecting, and reporting neglect and abuse.
  • Accountability – Responsibility and transparency. Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility; accountability ensures everyone plays their part in safeguarding vulnerable people. Transparency fosters trust, and this is important in safeguarding practice.
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Capella Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL):

Kate Smith, Capella MD


Phone: 07968 344764


Capella Deputy Designated Safeguarding Leads:

Claire Hughes, Capella Quality and Commercial Director


Phone: +44 (0)1676 522 766

Safeguarding Apprentices and Delegates

As well as providing a safe working environment there is also a statutory requirement to protect Apprentices and Delegates from maltreatment and any impairment of their health, wellbeing or development, regardless of their age. All concerns should be reported directly to Capella’s Designated Safeguarding Lead, or in her absence Capella’s Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead, regardless of how small or insignificant they may first appear to be.

  • Capella Associates and employer representatives supporting the apprentice/delegate need to be vigilant in identifying and reporting any signs of a safeguarding issue – it is the responsibility of everyone to report concerns, especially if the apprentice/delegate is aged 18 or under.
  • Apprentices/delegates must be made aware of your company policy, including confidentiality, data protection, GDPR and acceptable use policies for IT, internet and digital services to ensure inappropriate, illegal or unsafe materials are not accessed.
  • Prevent is another strand of safeguarding and falls under the Government Counter Terrorism and Security Act. As your employee is in Education you also have a responsibility to escalate any concerns or indicators of radicalisation or being groomed for terrorist activity.
  • If an apprentice/delegate discloses anything to you or a colleague, or you notice any changes in their behaviour, please contact the safeguarding lead or the apprentice/delegate’s assessor.

Safeguarding Yourself

Managers of apprentices/delegates should take steps to safeguard themselves. Suggested actions are shown below:

  • Ensure the mandatory industry and legal requirements for employees within your sector such as DBS and Health & Safety checks are completed.
  • It is advisable to have safeguarding training and appoint a Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL).
  • Ensure all parties understand and agree to their role and responsibilities.
  • Be clear of the boundaries between professional and personal relationships and work in a transparent manner to reduce the opportunities for unfounded accusations.
  • Be aware of the amount of time spent working alone with an individual learner, especially those aged 18 or under.
  • Travelling with a young and/or vulnerable apprentice/delegate on a 1:1 basis should be avoided.
  • Young and/or vulnerable apprentices/delegates can be inexperienced, impressionable and unaware of potential risks therefore be mindful of this and their level of maturity.
  • Adhere to your legal responsibility as an employer; guidance can be referred to on the HSE and ACAS websites.

What can you do as an employer?

  • Assign someone in your company to have lead responsibility for Safeguarding.
  • Your nominated lead for Safeguarding should undertake training, we recommend;

– Prevent – (Prevent for Employers 2018);

– Safeguarding –

  • Implement a Safeguarding policy in your company to reassure staff of the support on offer and offer guidance to employees who may have a concern about a colleague.

A full copy of Capella’s Safeguarding and Prevent Policy, including Capella’s Safeguarding Reporting Procedure, is available on Capella’s Apprentice Hub here.

Please see below for some further information regarding the following Safeguarding Issues: County Lines; Cuckooing; Honour-Based Abuse and Forced Marriage; Sexting

County Lines

County Lines (going country, OT or Cunch) is the transportation, and storing of illegal drugs from one area to another within the UK, using a ‘deal line’ likely to be an allocated mobile phone.

Gangs and organised criminal networks often use coercion, intimidation, weapons and abuse as a control mechanism to exploit children and vulnerable adults. Vulnerable young females may enter into a relationship with leaders or dealers which could then lead onto other forms of abuse, sexual exploitation and domestic abuse.

In some cases the gangs will operate their dealings from the home of a vulnerable person (cuckooing).

Signs of someone being exploited to county lines:

  • Change in mood and/or demeanour (e.g secretive, withdrawn, aggressive, emotional)
  • Substance misuse
  • Changes to how they dress
  • Unexplained, sometimes unaffordable new possessions (clothes, jewellery, mobile phone etc)
  • Young people going missing, sometimes for long periods of time
  • Changes in friends/peer group
  • Truancy, exclusion, disengagement from studies
  • Unexplained injuries

If you suspect someone is being exploited in this way you can:

  • Speak to the police by dialling 101, or in an emergency 999
  • Contact the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111
  • Call Childline on 0800 1111

Other useful websites:




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Cuckooing is a term used in connection with County Lines. This is when a gang or criminal network use the home of a vulnerable adult to base their drug operation from, in some situations the gang may take over the whole house, or only allow the owner access to specific parts of their home.

Signs of cuckooing, as well as those identified in ‘County Lines’:

  • An increase in visitors and cars to house/flat
  • New and regularly changing residents
  • An increase in anti-social behaviour in the community


Honour-based Abuse & Forced marriage

This form of abuse is aimed at people who are believed to be bringing shame on their family or the wider community, this can be committed through violence, threats of violence, intimidation, coercion or abuse. This type of abuse is linked to forced marriage, this is when one or both parties do not give consent to be married and therefore one or more of the following offences may be used to coerce one into marriage.

  • Harassment
  • Kidnap
  • Blackmail
  • False imprisonment
  • Assault
  • Child abduction
  • Rape or other sexual offences
  • Threats to kill
  • Immigration offences
  • Fraud
  • Marriage offences
  • People trafficking
  • Controlling, causing or inciting prostitution

For more information visit


Sexting is the term used when young people under the age of 18 produce and/or share videos and photos of themselves and others. These are nude or nearly nude images and/or sexual acts, via text, email or social networking. If this nude and/or sexual act media involves children under 18 years, and is shared with or by adults, this is classed as child sexual abuse and must be referred to the police.

If you are made aware of or see a sexting incident you must report this to the Designated Safeguard Lead immediately.

Sexting can have serious consequences for both parties especially if the content is shared with others or uploaded onto social media. This may cause long term problems with further education or employment. More seriously, if the images shared are that of someone under 18 this is classed as an offence and can lead to a criminal record and a young person’s name being placed on the sex offender register.



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