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P - R

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Physical abuse

This is a form of abuse which happens when an individual is deliberately hurt. It includes actions such as kicking, hitting, throwing, shaking, burning, poisoning, breast ironing, or suffocating. It also includes actions taken by a carer which either cause symptoms of illness in an individual they are caring for or giving them medicine they do not require which makes them ill. 

Police protection order (PPO)

This can happen in an emergency and children could be placed under police protection for up to 72 hours. This is generally in emergency foster care and will only happen if the police are concerned about a child’s immediate safety with no time to apply for an EPO. Often this happens at the weekend or late at night.

Position of trust

This is a specific legal term that refers to certain roles and settings where an adult has regular and direct contact with children. These individuals must not engage in sexual activity with a child in their care even where that child is over the age of consent (16 or over). Examples of positions of trust include care workers, doctors, social workers, teachers and youth justice workers.

Potential source of risk

A potential source of risk is a person who is believed to be responsible for, or involved in, the abuse of an adult.


As part of the UK government counter-terrorism approach, CONTEST, it has set a strategy called Prevent. This aims to reduce the threat to the UK from terrorism by stopping people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism.  

Protected characteristic

The Equality Act covers the same groups that were protected by previous or existing equality legislation:

  • Age
  • Disability
  • Gender reassignment
  • Race
  • Religion or belief
  • Sex
  • Sexual orientation
  • Marriage and civil partnership
  • Pregnancy
  • Maternity.

These are now known as 'protected characteristics'.

Psychological Abuse

Term mainly used with adults at risk but often also called emotional abuse. For children, the term is usually emotional abuse.

It can include behaviours such as:

  • threats of harm or abandonment
  • deprivation of contact
  • humiliation
  • blaming
  • intimidation
  • coercion
  • verbal abuse
  • cyber bullying
  • isolation
  • unreasonable and unjustified withdrawal of services or supportive networks.

See also: controlling behaviour, coercive control , harassment,


The UK government defines this as the process by which a person comes to support terrorism and extremist ideologies associated with terrorist groups.

Risk assessment

An important part of safeguarding which doesn’t just cover health and safety. This involves considering all the risks that might be present in a situation (such as taking a group of children on an overnight trip) and taking steps to mitigate these.


Page last edited Oct 03, 2019

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