2 Personal & Community Safety ● Age Concern Fact Sheets and Local Information



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Age Concern Sutton Services



Reception number

 020 8770 4092

Fax number

 020 8770 4093

Brokerage

 020 8770 6876

Charity Shop

 020 8770 0206

First Contact/ Information & Advice Service

 020 8770 4090

Helping Hands

 020 8770 4091

Home Fire Safety Assessment

 020 8770 4097

Home Security Service

 020 8770 4097

Homeshare Project

 020 8770 4096

Insurance Service

 020 8770 4092

Podiatry Service

 020 8770 4092

Handy Person

 020 8770 4097

Sutton Voice (Advocacy)

 020 8770 4709

User & Carer Project

 020 8770 6875


Age Concern Sutton Borough

 Helpline 020 8770 4090

Website: www.ageconcernsutton.org.uk

Email: admin@ageconcernsutton.org.uk

Address: 1 Lower Square, Civic Centre

St Nicholas Way, Sutton SM1 1EA




Local Services and Contacts



Neighbourhood Watch
Metropolitan Police Service

 0300 123 1212 (Ask for your local police station)



http://www.met.police.uk/saferneighbourhoods

Contact Police or Crime Prevention Officer, for details of your local group



Safer Neighbourhood Teams

If you have concerns about day-to-day crime and disorder issues, or if you would like to get involved, please contact your local team.




Beddington North

Beddington South

Belmont

Carshalton Central



Carshalton South and Clockhouse

Cheam


Nonsuch

St Helier

Stonecot

Sutton Town Centre

Sutton Central

Sutton North

Sutton South

Sutton West

The Wrythe

Wallington North

Wallington South

Wandle Valley

Worcester Park


020 7161 8241

020 8721 2073

020 8721 2829

020 8721 2898

020 8721 2490

020 8721 2830

020 8721 2491

020 8649 3591

020 8721 2492

020 8649 3731

020 8721 2710

020 8721 2494

020 8721 2497

020 8721 2498

020 8721 2493

020 8721 2495

020 8721 2730

020 8721 2773

020 8649 3590


07920 233863

07884 092474

07920 233869

07884 092615

07920 233868

07843 065916

07920 233867

07920 233865

07920 233862

07920 233861

07920 233866

07920 233864

07920 233864

07766 990063

07843 065915


Sutton Police Station
 0300 123 1212

Website: www.cms.met.police.uk/sutton

E: suttonpolice@met.police.uk





Seniors Page (Adults and Older People)

Website: www.sutton.gov.uk



Information for older people from the London Borough of Sutton



Sutton Staying Put
 020 8409 7061

Website: www.sutton.gov.uk


24 Denmark Road, Carshalton SM5 2JG

Provide support service for older, disable and vulnerable people to enable them to live independently in comfort and safety in their own homes



Sutton Women’s Centre
 020 8661 1991

Website: www.suttonwomen.co.uk

E: info@suttonwomen.co.uk
3 Palmerston Road, Sutton SM1 4QL


Provide services and support for women and children provides advice, information and support on health, education, employment, childcare, and all women’s issues. Also have support workers specializing in domestic abuse.

Trading Standards/ Business Regulation Service
 020 8770 5070

 08454 04 05 06 hotline

Website: www.sutton.gov.uk Search ‘trading standards’


Help with consumer issues / bogus callers etc

Adult Social Services
First Contact  020 8770 6080

Website: www.sutton.gov.uk




Provide support, care and protection for people in difficult circumstances


Sutton Racial Equality Council
 020 8770 6199

F: 020 8770 6198

Website: www.suttonrec.org.uk

E: admin@suttonrec.org.uk


2 Grove Cottage, Grove Park,

High Street, Carshalton SM5 3BB




Advises and assists organisations to support community cohesion and integration and eliminate discrimination in London Borough of Sutton



Sutton and East Surrey Water Services
 01737 772000 (24 hour Emergency)

 020 8772 7004 Plumbing / Drainage problems

 020 8772 7005 Heating problems

Website: www.waterplc.com


Skilled professionals to deal with plumbing, heating and household problems



National Services and Helplines


Women’s Aid National Helpline
 0808 2000 247 (24 hour)

 0117 944 4411

Fax: 0117 924 1703

Website: www.womensaid.org.uk

E: info@womensaid.org.uk

Helpline: helpline@womensaid.org.uk


Womens’ Aid, PO Box Bristol 391, BS99 7WS

Provide support to end violence against women and children

British Gas
 0800 111 999 (24 hour emergency)

 0800 048 0202 (Account enquiries)

Website: www.britishgas.co.uk
British Gas, PO Box 4805, Worthing BN11 9QW





National Grid
 0800 111 999 (24 hour)

Website: http://www.nationalgrid.com/uk/gas



If you smell gas or are worried about gas safety


Gas Safe Register
 0800 408 5500

 0800 408 0606 Textphone

Website: www.gassaferegister.co.uk

E: enquiries@gassaferegister.co.uk


Gas Safe Register, PO Box 6804, Basingstoke RG24 4NB

Provides information and advice on Gas Safe Register. A place to find and check a registered gas engineer or gas business.

Energy watch
 08454 04 05 06
Website: www.energywatch.org.uk

E: contact@consumerfocus.org.uk



Free and impartial advice - and even taking up your case if you feel you’re being treated unfairly by your gas or electricity supplier

Emergency
 999


Police, fire, rescue, ambulance and paramedic services

NHS Direct

 0845 4647

Website: www.nhsdirect.nhs.uk



You can speak directly to a nurse who will give you advice or refer you to a hospital

EAGA

1. Warm Front Grant

2. Home Energy Efficiency Scheme (HEES)

 0800 316 2805 (Warm Front)

 0800 316 2815 (HEES)

Website: www.eaga.co.uk

E: enquiry@eaga.com


1. Warm Front Grant

2. Home Energy Efficiency Scheme (HEES)
Provides grants to improve the insulation and heating of eligible elderly, low income households.


Samaritans
 08457 90 90 90

Website: http://www.samaritans.org.uk/

E: jo@samaritans.org
Chris, P.O. Box 9090 Stirling FK8 2SA


Provides confidential non-judgmental support, 24 hours a day for people experiencing feelings of distress or despair



Feeling Safe in your Home

Home Office research indicates that people over 60 years of age are less likely to become victims of crime than other age groups, however you may think otherwise. If it is the case that you do not feel safe in your home, or you would like to feel somewhat safer where you live then there are a number of things that you can do.




Government acknowledges the negative impact that crime and fear of crime have on the quality of life of older people. The impact of being a victim of crime can restrict activities



and compromise the mental health and well being of older people.



What can I do to feel safer in my home?


  • You should secure windows and doors, and make sure you shut them when you leave the house. Keep valuable things out of sight




  • Do not keep large amounts of money in the home




  • When out, stick to busy routes and try and keep your keys separate from your bag




  • Do not give your keys to people you do not know very well. If you are worried someone else has a key to your house and you are not happy with this then you can change the locks. If you need new locks fitted contact the Age Concern Home Security service or get a qualified locksmith, and check if they are members of the Master Locksmith Association




  • Lighting in your home - as we get older we all need more light to be able to read. Stairs or areas used a lot in the home also need to be well lit to help prevent a fall.


I do not feel safe in my home at night or in the day. Is there anyone I can talk to about this? – You may contact your local police station and ask to speak to a crime prevention officer for advice.
What do I do if I have suffered a crime or have witnessed a crime? – Contact the police immediately and try to be as detailed as possible. List missing items if any, change the locks if your keys have been taken and check if your insurance will cover the cost. If your cards have been stolen call your bank or credit card company as soon as possible to cancel them.
Can I get any help dealing with being a victim of crime? – Victim support is a national charity which helps people affected by crime. It provides free and confidential information and support to victims of crime, whether or not they have reported the crime to the police.
Is there anything that you can advise me to be aware of? – Bogus callers. Most people who come to your door will be genuine callers. Unfortunately you cannot always be sure, so it is important to take precautions before opening the door. Bogus callers can be very persuasive. They may use a number of excuses to try and get in your house. They may tell you that:

  • They are from the council, the police, health services, gas, water or electrical companies.

  • Their car has broken down and they need to use the phone.

  • They are tradesmen or workmen doing urgent repairs.

So, to be more aware of bogus callers you should: -

  • Look through the spy hole to see who they are. If you haven’t got one, consider getting one fitted.

  • Make sure your chain is across the door, and open the door with the chain across it to talk to the person.

  • Make sure the back door is locked, as some people work together and someone may go round the back of the house whilst you are being distracted.

  • Ask to see the person’s ID. If you are unsure about it, then ring their company using the phone number from the phone book, not from their ID.

  • If you do not feel comfortable then tell them to leave and make a later appointment so you are able to have someone there with you the next time they call around.

  • Do not let them in if you are unsure.

  • Some companies operate a password system so you know that the callers are the right people. Contact the company to find out about this.

  • Visible burglar alarms will deter opportunist burglars and increase security of your home.

  • Keep emergency telephone numbers within reach so you can use them straight away should you need to.

  • Phone calls and harassment is another thing to be aware of. If you answer the phone and someone you do not know is asking for your name and number do not give it to them. Do not respond to the phone call, put the phone by the receiver and leave it. Check it a bit later on to see if they have gone. If the phone calls continue then call your service provider as they could trace some calls, or you may be able to change your phone number.



Who Can Help?

Age Concern Home Security Service will be happy to offer advice on all aspects of security in your home. We visit your premises and conduct a site survey to ensure the advice we offer meets your needs and requirements. The Home Security Service is available to the residents of the London Borough of Sutton aged 55+. Your local Victim Support Scheme or Age Concern may be able to advise you on where to get help with buying and fitting locks.
Safer Neighbourhood teams are about local policing; police and partners working with you, to identify and tackle issues of concern in your neighbourhood.

There are 18 Safer Neighbourhoods Teams and a Town Centre Neighbourhood Team in Sutton borough. Each team is normally made up of six police and Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs). Their aim is to listen and talk to you, and find out what affects your daily life and feelings of security. These might be issues such as anti-social behaviour, graffiti, noisy neighbourhoods, yobs or vandalism. Then, they work in partnership with you and other agencies to find a lasting solution.



Safer Neighbourhoods Inspectors: Inspectors can be contacted on 020 8649 0716 or 0300 123 1212, details of the teams, the areas they cover and their contact details are in the contacts pages of this section.

Neighbourhood Watch is a crime prevention initiative. It is a scheme that allows local people to help the police cut crime. Each scheme has a volunteer co-ordinator who gets their neighbours together to discuss how they can make their streets safer. They keep in contact with the local police to share information and advice. Some insurance companies offer members of neighbourhood watch schemes discounts on house insurance premiums. Contact your Crime Prevention Officer at your local police station to see if there is such a scheme in your area or advice on how to set one up.
Age Concern Sutton provides a ‘Small Job Service’, that offers a reliable service for those who are worried about allowing strangers into their homes to carry out repairs and DIY jobs. We can assist with most aspects of house maintenance; however we cannot take on electrical or plumbing work. The service is chargeable, but, estimates are free and in some cases grants are available. If work needs to be done that we cannot take care of then we will provide you with the Age Concern Tradesperson list.
Sutton Staying Put will provide independent advice about carrying out repairs or adaptations. Including repairs to a leaking roof; damp proofing; rewiring; insulation; structural work; fitting grab rails, stair lifts etc.
Sutton’s Trading Standards Service tries to ensure the highest levels of fair trading and consumer protection for everybody who lives, works or does business in the Borough.
Your Safety Pack a joint initiative by the Safer Sutton Partnership Service and Sutton Council’s Building Regulation Service to keep Sutton residents safe from rogue traders and bogus callers.
Safety in the Home
Home Safety Checklist

The culprit in many home injuries can be innocent things around your home, many of which are easily fixed. Falling over an object or tripping down the stairs are the most common accidents. Your body cannot react as fast as it used to, but there are many ways to minimise the risks of having an accident– many of which are easily fixed. This checklist will help you inspect your home for evidence of trouble that may be waiting to happen. Every “NO” answer is a clue that your home may not be as safe as it could be. If you answer “no”, check the “TO DO” box as a reminder that a change is needed.







General

Yes

No

To Do

If you have rugs or mats, do they have backing on them to stop them from slipping when you walk on them?










If you have rugs or mats, ensure they are not at the top of the stairs, where they can lead to a fall?










If you use floor wax do you use a non-slip kind?










Do you have a list of emergency telephone numbers near the phone?










Do you know your escape route in case of a fire?










Do you have phone cords and electrical cables on your floor?










If you have a storage heater, is it placed away from flammable substances and materials?










Is your home well lit so you can see everything?










Do you keep the floors in your home clear so you do not trip over anything?










Is there a smoke alarm in your house?










Do you test your smoke alarm every six months?










Do you keep important documents in a fire resistant cabinet?













Stairs

Yes

No

To Do

Do you have light switches at the top and bottom of the stairs?










Are your stairs in good condition?










If you have carpets on the stairs, are all the edges fastened properly?










Are there solid handrails or banisters down the side of the stairs?










Is your stairway well lit?










Bathroom

Yes

No

To Do

Are the hot and cold taps clearly marked?










Do you test the temperature of the water before you get into the bath?










Do you have a rubber bath mat on the bottom of your bath to stop yourself from slipping in the bath?










Do you have grab rails placed by the toilet and near the bath?










Is the light switch close to the entrance?










If you have trouble taking a shower standing up, do you have a bath seat so you can shower sitting down?










Do you use electrical appliances well away from the shower, sink and other sources of water?










Kitchen

Yes

No

To Do

Is all your food stored in an easy to reach location?










Are the heavier items in the lower cupboards and the lighter items in the higher cupboards?










Are the ‘on’ and ‘off’ buttons on the cooker clearly marked?










Do you make sure that your tea towels and oven gloves do not come into contact with cooker elements?










Do you have a fire extinguisher in the kitchen?










Do you know how to use a fire extinguisher?










Do you regularly check that your fire extinguisher is in good operating order?










Bedroom

Yes

No

To Do

Is there a switch near the entrance of your bedroom?










Is the floor in the bedroom free from obstruction?










Do you have a phone near your bed?










Do you have a night light in the hall in case you get up in the middle of the night?










Safety Related Products
Appropriate Footwear
Wearing appropriate footwear can help to prevent falls. Appropriate footwear is comfortable and provides good support. Lower heels are easier on your feet and back, and are more stable for walking. Shoes with smooth, slippery soles can cause you to fall. Sticky composition soles, such as crepe soles, can stick to carpets and trip you. Seek advice from a chiropodist to find out the best footwear to suit you.
Bath Seats
These portable seats allow you to take a shower sitting down. If you have trouble getting into the bath, you can sit up higher. Some models are especially designed to make it easier to get in and out of the bath. Get advice from an Occupational Therapist.
Bath Mats
A rubber bath mat can make baths and showers less slippery to stand in. To clean them, throw them in the washing machine or dishwasher. If you use the dishwasher, be sure to remove the mat before the dry cycle.
Walking Sticks
Walking sticks can be a handy aid for walking, and these days they come in some fashionable styles too. However, it is very important to make sure your stick is the right height and that the rubber tips are checked every once in a while to ensure they are still in good shape.
Carpet Backing
Rugs can be dangerous. If you can’t part with them, make sure they are firmly attached to the floor. Non-slip carpet backing is crucial to help keep them in place. Double-sided tape can also be used to tack rugs down. These items can be purchased at most stores that sell carpeting and at some department stores.
Cordless Telephones
Cordless phones can be safer because the receiver can be separated from the telephone’s base, eliminating the need to run telephone cords across a room or across frequently travelled areas. This way there are no cords to trip over, and you can keep the phone close by. Wire/Cord Clips are self-adhesive items used to tack down electrical and telephone cords along the walls so they don’t run across the floors, where they are more likely to cause you to trip. These clips can be found at most DIY stores.
Emergency Response Systems
These units are communication devices that will get help for you in case of an emergency. A variety of businesses and some non-profit organisations are involved in this kind of service. They will install the device in your home sometimes for a charge and then charge a monthly fee to monitor the unit. You wear a wristwatch or pendant type of device with a call button, which you press in case of an emergency. London Borough of Sutton has a product called ‘Safecall’ and Age Concern has one called ‘Aid Call’. Call Age Concern Sutton Borough on 020 8770 4090 to find out about Aid Call.
Grab Rails
Grab rails installed by the bath or shower and beside the toilet can provide more stability and help prevent slips and falls. Towel racks should never be used for support, since they are not properly anchored to the wall for this purpose. Grab rails must be anchored firmly into the studs in the wall and should be installed by someone who is skilled in this type of work. An occupational therapist can recommend the right type and size for you. Age Concern Sutton Borough may be able to help. Phone the Small Job Service on 020 8770 4097.
Handheld Showerhead
A handheld showerhead can make showering easier, especially if you are using a bath seat. The showerhead can also be installed with two or three mounting positions, allowing it to be used by standing or seated bathers. This type of showerhead is relatively easy to install, and portable models are also available.
Medication Boxes
These organisers can help keep track of medications, but they are not childproof, and must be stored out of the reach of children.
Night Lights
Stumbling around in the dark is dangerous. Night lights that plug into an outlet are inexpensive, and many have a built-in sensor that turns the night light on only when the room is dim. It is a good idea to put one between your bedroom and bathroom or to leave an overhead light on.
Raised Toilet Seats
A seat raised four to six inches above the toilet bowl can make getting on and off the toilet easier. There are many designs available – some adjustable, some portable and some with safety/hand rails. It is important to have the right model for you. An occupational therapist can advise.
Handy Reachers
For those who have trouble bending or reaching high places, these devices will do the trick. Please call first contact on 020 8770 4090 to find out where to get one.
Walking or Zimmer Frames
If walking for 20 minutes without help is a problem for you, a walking frame could be worth having. With a walking frame, you can go further, longer and, with some models, you can even have a seat when you want to take a break. Many models also come with a basket for carrying packages. Special tote bags that attach to the walking frame can also be purchased. An occupational therapist or physiotherapist can advise and teach you how to use them.

Falls


As you get older, there is an increased chance that you will fall over. The consequences of falling over become more serious as age increases due to the body being weak. The body is weak therefore it can take a long time to heal


Exercise can help prevent falls as well as being good for your health. Exercise can increase your strength, balance and stamina. Some forms of exercise you can try include walking, swimming, keep fit or aerobics. Less energetic exercise that are still beneficial include yoga, tai chi, bowling or pilates.


Falling over is not part of everyday life, and if it does happen, your confidence can be damaged as well as your body. The advice above in the safety checklist and safety related products section can help you prevent having a fall, however if you do have a fall then follow these guidelines


  • Stay still for a few minutes to calm yourself down and try not to panic




  • Call out for help if you can either by shouting or using the phone




  • If you feel that you can get up, then try to use a steady piece of furniture to help you balance




  • If you know that you cannot get up, do not strain yourself. Try to get something that will keep you warm while you wait for someone to help you


Fire Gas and Electricity

The fire service attends 50,000 household fires in Britain every year
16,000 fires are caused by oil and fat pans (every year)
4 out of 10 deaths are caused by fires resulting from smoking



Cooking / Open fires


  • When cooking anything in the kitchen, never leave it unattended - not even for a few seconds. If you have to leave the kitchen, take the pans off the heat




  • Do not cook food if you are under the influence of alcohol




  • If you are using a deep fat frying pan on a cooker, do not leave it unattended and never fill it more than one third full




  • Do not place anything metal in the microwave (foil, metal containers etc)




  • Turn saucepans away so they do not stick out and are not over another ring




  • Remember not to dry towels near cookers as this could be a fire hazard




  • Use a fireguard to cover the fire when you leave the room or go to sleep




  • Do not hang clothes over the fireguard to dry

Smoking


  • Make sure that all cigarettes are stubbed out, as tobacco keeps burning unless it is put out.




  • Putting a small amount of water at the bottom of the ash tray will help extinguish the smoking materials.




  • Do not smoke in bed or when feeling tired or drowsy or when under the influence of alcohol or drugs (whether prescribed or not)


Burns / Scalds
Scalds can be caused by hot water, hot oil, and steam. Bath water is a major cause of scalds, so it is useful to remember that when running a bath, put the cold water in first and then add the hot water. If you do burn yourself:


  • Cool the skin, by holding it under a running tap of cool water for a minimum of 10 minutes




  • Cover the burn with clean materials such as kitchen film, or a clean dry cloth, as this will prevent any germs entering the burn. It also helps retain moisture and protects the burn from any further damage.




  • If the burn continues to worry you or is continuously painful, then seek advice from a doctor


Electrical appliances
Electricity is used everywhere in our homes, and it can take a poorly wired, or an old plug to cause a fire. Wires do not need to be touching to cause a fire, as sparks can jump. There are many things you can do to help prevent an electrical fire.


  • Look out for hot plugs and sockets, lights that start flickering, brown ‘scorch’ marks on the sockets or plugs. These are all signs of loose wiring which should be sorted out as soon as possible.




  • Do not overload sockets as this could lead to overheating. Do not plug adaptors into adaptors.




  • Make sure that all heat producing appliances (toaster, hairdryer) are plugged into a single socket and are not used with an adaptor.







  • When you are not using an electrical appliance turn it off and do not leave it on stand-by. Do not leave appliances on over night, such as cookers or washing machines.




  • Do not dry clothes or wet materials over electric heaters




  • Keep an eye on your electric blanket and replace it if it gets damaged in any way. Never use a hot water bottle with an electric blanket.


Gas
Carbon Monoxide (CO) is a poisonous gas which is produced when gas does not burn properly. It does not burn properly when gas appliances have not been installed or maintained properly. If you are thinking about installing or checking a gas appliance allow Gas Safe Register engineers to do this. On the 1st of April 2009, the CORGI Gas registration scheme was replaced in Great Britain by the Gas Safe Register. It is a legal requirement for a business or self-employed person working on gas fittings or appliances (http://www.nationalgas.co.uk/).
What to look out for

  • Yellow or orange flames instead of blue flames from a gas appliance

  • Pilot lights which frequently blow out

  • Soot or yellow or brown stains can appear on or around appliances.


Prevention

  • Ensure your Chimney is swept at least once a year

  • Empty ash from solid-fuel appliances regularly

  • Make sure you have proper ventilation when using heaters

  • Make sure you get a Gas Safe Registered engineer to service your gas appliances regularly


Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning

  • Tiredness

  • Drowsiness

  • Headaches

  • Dizziness

  • Chest pains

If you think that your gas appliance is giving out carbon monoxide, turn it off and do not use it again until it has been looked at. Open all windows and doors to ventilate the room. Visit your GP and explain the situation, and call a Gas Safe Registered engineer to look at the appliance (http://www.firekillsdirect.gov.uk/index.html).



Safety outside the Home

Attacks on people by strangers in public are rare and violent crimes accounts for a small part of all recorded crime. There are some small things you could do to reduce the risk of being attacked if you are to experience it.





What can I do to reduce the risk of being attacked outside of my home?


  • Walk facing oncoming traffic, as this stops cars from pulling up behind you




  • Do not carry large amounts of money




  • Do not fight back if someone tries to take your bag as you could end up getting hurt




  • If you think someone is following you, check by crossing the road, and if you are still worried go to the nearest place where there are people and call the police




  • While waiting for public transport, wait in a well lit area




  • Sit near the driver or near other people on public transport. If you feel uncomfortable at any time, move to a different seat




  • Consider carrying a mobile phone




  • Consider carrying a personal attack alarm


Contact across generations

Older people have mixed views about the advantages and disadvantages of interacting with people of different ages. Some prefer to socialise only within their own peer group but may seek contact with people of different ages. It was found that many older people think that better relationships with younger people would reduce the fear of crime and make them feel more secure in their neighbourhoods.



Unwanted Visitors

Most people who come to your door will be genuine callers. Unfortunately you cannot always be sure, so it is important to take precautions before opening the door as someone may turn up unannounced. They may have the intention of tricking their way into your home with the intention of committing burglary.






Bogus callers and Burglary

Bogus callers can also be known as ‘distraction burglars’ as they are known to distract in order to steal money and possessions. They may use a number of excuses to try and get into your house. They may tell you that:




  • They are from the council, the police, health services, gas, water or electrical companies (they could also be dressed smartly to look the part).




  • Their car has broken down and they need to use the phone.




  • They are tradesmen or workmen doing urgent repairs.

So, to be more aware of bogus callers you should Stop, Chain and Check.


STOP. . .Are you expecting anyone? Does anyone have an appointment with you? Look through the spy hole to see who they are. If you haven’t got a spy hole consider getting one fitted.
CHAIN. . . Secure the door with a bar or chain before opening it to talk to the person. Also make sure that the back door is locked, as some people work together and someone may go round the back of the house whilst you are being distracted.
CHECK . . .Ask for and double check the caller’s ID. If you are unsure about it, ring their company they say they are from using the phone number from the phone book. Do not use the number provided on their ID card
Finally, if you are in doubt . . . keep them out!
Some companies operate a password system so you know that the callers are the right people. Contact the company to find out about this.

Visible burglar alarms will deter opportunist burglars and increase security of your home.

Keep emergency telephone numbers within reach so you can use them straight away should you need to.
Phone calls and harassment is another aspect to be aware of. If you answer the phone and someone you do not know is asking for your name and details do not give it to them. Do not respond to the phone call, put the phone by the receiver and leave it. Check it later on to see if they have gone. If the phone calls continue then call your service provider as they could trace some calls, or you may be able to change your phone number.
Age Concern Services
Age Concern Home Security Service will be happy to offer advice on all aspects of security in your home. We visit your premises and conduct a site survey to ensure the advice we offer meets your needs and requirements. The Home Security Service is available to the residents of the London Borough of Sutton aged 55+.

Your local Victim Support Scheme or Age Concern may be able to advise you on where to get help with buying and fitting locks.


Age Concern Sutton provides a ‘Small Job Service’, that offers a reliable service for those who are worried about allowing strangers into their homes to carry out repairs and DIY jobs. We can assist with most aspects of house maintenance; however we cannot take on electrical or plumbing work. The service is chargeable, but, estimates are free and in some cases grants are available. If work needs to be done that we cannot take care of then we will provide you with the Age Concern Tradesperson list.
Safeguarding Vulnerable Adults
Some of us are more at risk of abuse than others, due to our age, disability, physical or mental ill health or substance mis-use. Such “vulnerable adults” can be harmed by:


  • Physical abuse

  • Sexual abuse

  • Psychological abuse

  • Financial or material abuse

  • Neglect and poor care

  • Discriminatory abuse

  • Institutional abuse

Abuse can occur at home or in a care setting.


Most victims know the person who is harming them or not looking after them properly.
They often find it difficult to ask for help and may not realise they are being abused.
If you are concerned about the way you or someone you know is being treated please contact Social Services on 020 8770 6080. Calls are dealt with confidentially.
In an emergency call the Police on 999.

Maintaining the Right Temperature

Maintaining the right temperature is very important to keeping healthy. Keeping warm in the cold weather and keeping cool in the warm weather is vital to your health.




Keeping Warm in the Cold Weather

Exposure to the cold does affect the number of winter deaths. Spending too long in the cold will lower the body temperature which can often aggravate circulatory diseases, which can lead to strokes and heart attacks or respiratory illnesses such as bronchitis or pneumonia.

As we get older, it becomes harder to keep warm. You may be cold, but unaware of it. It is essential to keep warm at home. The general principle is that you should keep the temperature in the rooms you are using at around 21°C (70°F). A room thermometer will help you to check that you have the right temperature. Whilst around the home, dress for warmth and comfort. Several thin layers will keep you warmer than one or two thick layers

When going outdoors, take care to dress for the weather and wrap up warmly. Exposure to cold and wind produces physiological changes in the blood. Up to half of your body heat is lost through the head, so wearing a hat or headscarf is essential to keep warm. Wear warm, dry flat boots or shoes with good non-slip soles, especially in wet weather.



Keeping Cool in the Heat

Older people, especially those on medication, can be particularly vulnerable to the heat. The ageing process means that the body copes less well to fluctuations in weather conditions. You should listen to your local weather forecast so you know if a heat wave is on the way. Heat stroke is especially dangerous for older people and sufferers will require urgent medical attention. A person with heat stroke has a body temperature above 104° and may have symptoms such as confusion, frustration, faintness, a fast pulse, and skin that doesn't sweat.

Top tips for keeping cool in very hot weather include:


  • Stay out of the heat, especially the mid-day sun

  • Always wear a sun hat when outdoors during the day

  • Keep your curtains closed to keep your home cool

  • Cool down with a wet flannel or a cool shower/bath

  • Keep drinking plenty of water and juice - avoid alcohol and coffee

  • Ask your doctor for advice if you are worried about coping with the heat

A new Heat Wave guide has been published on the Department of Health website advising people how to cope in the event of extremely hot weather.

Medication Drugs and Alcohol

Mental Health is a state of well-being in which the individual realises his or her abilities and can cope with normal stresses of life and is able to contribute to his or her own community. A study backed by the Mental Health Foundation and Age Concern has revealed that over three million British pensioners could suffer from depression severe enough to seriously affect their quality of life. It is often assumed that quality of life decreases with age but this is not necessarily true. Studies show that for many people, particularly women, life satisfaction increases as they grow older. Staying active and having a sense of purpose is just as important for the mental health and well being of older people as it is for younger people.




Drugs and alcohol do not mix. Alcohol can react with many common medications including tranquilizers, sleeping pills, cold or allergy medicines, high blood pressure pills and pain medication. Mixing alcohol and medications may cause these feelings or symptoms: dizziness, fainting, confusion, drowsiness and poor coordination. These symptoms increase your risk of falls and other injuries.

If you have to take medication, follow this general advice:


  • Talk to your health care professional about alternatives to medication. Medication may not always be the best solution

  • Tell all your doctors and your pharmacist about all of the medicine you are taking, prescription, over the counter or herbal, as well as your use of alcohol

  • If you react to a medicine or experience side effects, tell your doctor or pharmacist. Your doctor may adjust the dosage

  • Have a medication review - if you are taking 4 or more different medications a day have a medication review. See your GP or pharmacist for this.

When you get a new medicine, ask these questions and make sure you understand the answers.




  • What is the name of the medication and what does it do?

  • How and when do I take it?

  • Are there any side effects and what should I do if I get any?

  • What food, drinks or other medicine should I avoid when I take this

  • medicine?

  • Do you have any written information about the medicine?

  • Have your medication reviewed


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