Types of Abuse

Abuse and neglect could mean:

Physical abuse: This includes being pushed, shaken, pinched, hit, held down, locked in a room, restrained inappropriately, or knowingly giving a person too much or not enough medication.

Sexual abuse: This involves a person being made to take part in sexual activity when they do not, or cannot, agree to this. It includes rape, indecent exposure, inappropriate looking or touching, or sexual activity where the other person is in a position of power or authority.

Financial abuse: This includes misusing or stealing a person’s money or belongings, fraud, postal or internet scams tricking people out of money, or pressuring a person into making decisions about their financial affairs, including decisions involving wills and property. 

Neglect: This involves not meeting a person’s physical, medical or emotional needs, either deliberately, or by failing to understand these. It includes ignoring a person’s needs, or not providing the person with essential needs, such as medication, food, water, shelter and warmth. 

Self-neglect: This involves a person being unable, or unwilling, to care for their own essential needs, including their health or surroundings (for example, their home is very unclean, refusal of necessary support, obsessive hoarding).

Psychological or emotional abuse: This includes being shouted at, ridiculed or bullied, threatened, humiliated, blamed or controlled by intimidation or fear. It includes harassment, verbal abuse, online or mobile phone bullying and isolation. 

Discriminatory abuse: This includes forms of harassment, ill-treatment, threats or insults because of a person’s race, age, culture, gender, gender identity, religion, sexuality, physical or learning disability, or mental-health needs. Discriminatory abuse can also be called ‘hate crime’.

Modern slavery: This includes slavery, a person being forced to work for little or no pay (including in the sex trade), being held against their will, tortured, abused or treated badly by others.

Domestic violence: This includes psychological, physical, sexual, financial or emotional abuse, by someone who is a family member or is, or has been, in a close relationship with the person being abused. This may be a one-off incident or a pattern of incidents or threats, violence, controlling or coercive behaviour. It also includes so called ‘honour’ based violence, being forced to marry, or undergo genital mutilation. 

Organisational abuse: This includes neglect and providing poor care in a care setting such as a hospital or care home, or in a person’s own home. This may be a one-off incident, repeated incidents or on-going ill-treatment. It could be due to neglect or poor care because of the arrangements, processes and practices in an organisation

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