What Are The 5 R’s Of Safeguarding? 2 Minute, Quick, Easy Read

What Are The 5 R’s Of Safeguarding?

The 5 R’s of safeguarding are a set of principles designed to guide individuals and organisations in their efforts to protect vulnerable people. Safeguarding is a crucial aspect of ensuring the well-being of vulnerable individuals in society. Safeguarding involves taking steps to prevent harm, abuse, or neglect from occurring, and it is essential that individuals and organisations understand their roles and responsibilities in safeguarding those at risk.The 5 R’s of safeguarding principles are as follows.

  • Recognise – the signs of abuse and neglect
  • Respond – appropriately to concerns about abuse and neglect
  • Report – concerns to the appropriate authorities
  • Record – information accurately and appropriately
  • Review – safeguarding practices regularly to ensure they are effective

These principles apply to safeguarding both children and adults, but in this article, we will focus specifically on safeguarding vulnerable adults.

Below is a useful graphic showing the The 5 R’s of safeguarding


The first R in The 5 R’s of safeguarding, “Recognise,” is about being aware of the signs of abuse and neglect. Abuse and neglect can take many forms, including physical, emotional, sexual, and financial abuse. Signs of abuse may include unexplained bruises or injuries, changes in behaviour or mood, and unexplained withdrawals from social activities. Neglect may be indicated by poor personal hygiene, malnutrition, or unsafe living conditions. It is essential that individuals and organisations are aware of these signs and take appropriate action if they have concerns. This may involve talking to the person directly or seeking advice from a safeguarding expert.


The second R, “Respond,” is about taking appropriate action if abuse or neglect is suspected. This may involve speaking to the person about their concerns or escalating the matter to a safeguarding expert or the police. It is important to respond quickly and appropriately to any concerns, as this can help to prevent further harm from occurring. It is also important to take steps to protect the person from any potential harm.


The third R in the 5 R’s of safeguarding, “Report,” is about reporting concerns to the appropriate authorities. This may involve contacting the local safeguarding team, the police, or social services. It is important to report any concerns promptly and accurately, as this can help to ensure that appropriate action is taken to protect the person from harm.


The fourth R, “Record,” is about recording information accurately and appropriately. This may involve keeping detailed records of any concerns or incidents, including dates, times, and any actions taken.


The fifth R in the 5 R’s of safeguarding, “Review,” is about regularly reviewing safeguarding practices to ensure they are effective. This may involve conducting regular audits or training sessions to ensure that staff are aware of their responsibilities and understand how to respond to concerns appropriately.

The Importance Of A DBS Check As Part Of The 5 R’s Of Safeguarding

Alongside these five principles, it is also important to recognise the importance of conducting DBS checks as part of safeguarding practices. A DBS check is a type of background check that is carried out on individuals who work with vulnerable people, including adults. The purpose of a DBS check is to identify any criminal convictions or cautions that an individual may have that could indicate a risk to vulnerable people. Here at Aarons Department this is what we do best, we can provide you with DBS Checks on staff that can help you adhere to the 5 R’s of safeguarding.

If you want additional information on safeguarding In care homes. Please read our guide Safeguarding in Care Homes to find out more.

The 5 R's Of Safeguarding

This information can then be used to assess the individual’s suitability for working with vulnerable people. DBS checks are an important part of safeguarding adults with additional needs such as mental health issues, as they can help to identify individuals who may pose a risk to these vulnerable people and prevent them from working with them. This can help to ensure that vulnerable people are protected from harm and that those who work with them are appropriately screened and trained and aware of the 5 R’s of Safeguarding.

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5 R's of Safeguarding

SummaryThe 5 R’s Of Safeguarding

The 5 R’s of safeguarding are Recognise, Respond, Report, Record and Review. Safeguarding adults is a crucial aspect of protecting vulnerable individuals in society. The 5 R’s of safeguarding provide a framework for individuals and organisations to ensure that they are taking appropriate action to prevent abuse and neglect from occurring. Additionally, conducting DBS checks as part of the 5 R’s of safeguarding is an important way to ensure that individuals who work with vulnerable people are appropriately screened and trained. It is important to remember that safeguarding and following the 5 R’s of safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility and that we all have a role to play in protecting vulnerable individuals.

Related Content

For further information on safeguarding, you can read more of our articles, including,

Safeguarding Vulnerable Patients With DBS Checks

DBS Checks And The Principles of Safeguarding

5 Reasons Why Safeguarding Is Important

About The Author

John Schofield-Antoncich

John has processed more applications than days he has been alive, and has become the DBS expert. Got a question? He knows the answer!

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