Domestic violence and abuse is still a societal taboo and it can be difficult to raise this topic with a patient. Additional difficulties of having this conversation with someone with a learning disability means questions are seldom asked.
However, nurses are trusted and may be the first person an individual will speak to about feeling unsafe. Work targets and time pressures can make it easy to miss clues and it’s even easier to make assumptions that mean we avoid asking difficult questions. A change in culture is needed: nurses must embrace their duty to ensure the opportunities to safeguard some of the most vulnerable people in our society are not missed.