Published: Monday, 22nd October 2018
Living with a learning disability can change how people experience everyday things. It is easy to feel scared or nervous when out in the community, but hard to know where to go for help.
Now through Safe Places, a scheme set up by Advocacy in Greenwich and supported by the Council, if someone with a learning disability feels scared or intimidated they can take refuge in any of the shops, cafes, pubs or community buildings that are displaying a Safe Places window sticker. There are 31 places so far with the aim of recruiting 100 across the borough.
Councillor Averil Lekau, Cabinet Member for Adult's Social Care, Health and Anti-Poverty, explains how the scheme works: "We want everyone in the borough to feel safe when they are out and about. Sometimes though, for people with a learning disability things can become particularly difficult if they feel scared, lost or unsafe.
“Now thanks to the Safe Places scheme people with a learning disability can become more independent and confident by signing up to the scheme and looking out for the Safe Place sticker, if they need to go inside and get help.”
The Council is inviting more businesses in the borough to become a Safe Place. Shops, cafes, pubs and community buildings can make a difference by signing up the scheme and agreeing to:
- display the window sticker
- take part in a short on site training session
- offering assistance when a person with a learning disability needs it
- making a phone call to the person's emergency contact or the police (if appropriate).
Safe Places in Greenwich is run by Advocacy in Greenwich with funding from The Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC) and support from the Council and the Metropolitan Police.