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What is abuse?

Abuse is a violation of a person’s human and civil rights. Sometimes abuse can result in serious harm and even death. The abuse may be a one off act or part of an ongoing pattern of abuse.


  • is the misuse of power by one person over another
  • could consist of a single or repeated acts
  • might be physical, verbal, psychological, financial, institutional or discriminatory
  • might happen when an adult at risk is persuaded to take part in a financial agreement or sexual act that they do not or cannot consent to
  • can prevent someone who is dependent on others for their basic needs, from exercising choice and control over their lives
  • may cause physical and emotional harm or undermines a person’s dignity
  • can be deliberate or unintentional

Who might abuse?

Anyone might be an abuser, but it is usually someone known to the person.

Where does it happen?

Abuse can happen anywhere. It may happen at home, in a care home, hospital, day centre or in a public place.

Contact Information

Adult Social Care

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