Principles in Providing Protective Services to Adults
have the right to make decisions for themselves until such time as a
court determines the adult lacks the capacity to decide and assigns that
responsibility to a guardian or conservator. The adult's right to
decide includes the right to accept help, the right to refuse help, and
the right to make unwise or poor decisions.
Freedom is as
important as safety; that is, an adult may choose to live in an unsafe
situation or even in a self-destructive manner provided that that person
is capable of choosing, does not harm other persons, and is committing
Services that support and strengthen the adult's
informal support system, e.g., family, neighbors, friends, church
members, are important to the long-term safety and well being of the
adult victim of abuse, neglect, or exploitation.
restrictive service is the most appropriate service. Protective services
should be provided with the least possible disruption to the adult's
The privacy rights of the adult will be respected and
information concerning him or her will be held in confidence.
Information that is learned and maintained as a result of an APS
investigation is confidential and is not subject to the Virginia Freedom
of Information Act. Limited information may be shared with certain
entities when the information is reasonably necessary for conducting
investigations by local and state government agencies for the purpose of
providing services to the subject of the information.
interests of an APS client, family member, the community, or others are
in conflict, it is the responsibility of the APS Family Services
Specialist to represent the interest of the client.