Transitional safeguarding

The term transitional safeguarding describes the need for, “an approach to safeguarding adolescents and young adults fluidly across developmental stages which builds on the best available evidence, learns from both children's and adult safeguarding practice and which prepares young people for their adult lives.”

Transition between Children's Services and Adult Care begins at the age of 14 years old. There is also a crossover with care leavers who are supported from 18 years old to 25 years old by Leaving Care teams. Care leavers have amongst the poorest outcomes. The National Audit Office’s care leavers’ transition to adulthood (2015) identified poorer life outcomes as a “longstanding problem”.

Transitional safeguarding pays particular attention to the harms associated with sexual and criminal exploitation, recognising that where young people are experiencing coercion and other forms of control and exploitation under 18 years old, these experiences and the impact they have rarely stop when a person turns 18.

The transitional safeguarding knowledge briefing attached to this page has been co-produced by the Chief Social Worker for Adults, Research in Practice, the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS), British Association of Social Workers (BASW), Care and Health Improvement Programme (Local Government Association and ADASS) and the NWG Network, with input from police colleagues.

Transitions audit 2022

In May 2022 Derbyshire Safeguarding Adults Board completed a multi-agency case audit where safeguarding was explored for people who have been through the transition from Children’s Services to Adult Care.

During this audit 4 adults were able to give their feedback directly to Derbyshire Safeguarding Adults Board. This feedback and findings from the case files has been used to create actions to improve links between children’s and adult services in safeguarding, promoting trauma-informed practice and promoting making safeguarding personal and person-centred tools.

The transitions audit briefing summary is attached to this page.