Mental Health Charity, Niamh ‘Embrace’ Guardian24’s Personal Safety Smartphone App

Guardian24 – the leading lone worker protection solution for the UK and Ireland, are working with Northern Ireland based charity, Niamh (the Northern Ireland Association for Mental Health), to protect their lone working support workers. By equipping them with Guardian24’s smartphone safety application, Niamh’s staff can quickly and discreetly call for help in the event of any emergency.

Niamh is the largest and longest established independent charity focusing on mental health and wellbeing services in Northern Ireland. At the core of Niamh’s services is the community-based support it provides to people who have had experience of mental illness. Niamh recognise that supporting people within supported housing and the community is both rewarding and, often, challenging.

According to a recent report, nationally, nine out of ten social workers have suffered verbal and physical abuse whilst working. Niamh already have robust risk policies, procedures and training in place for practicing safe lone working, but equipping staff with a mobile-based means of raising an alarm in the event of an emergency was agreed to be a necessary requirement as an additional level of support.

The charity have opted for Guardian24’s smartphone application which can be easily installed on their employee’s existing Android-operated mobile phones. The application allows users to discreetly raise an alarm in the event of an emergency, directly linking them with Controllers at Guardian24’s Alarm Receiving Centre.

The software also comes equipped with a ‘check in/check out’ function, allowing lone workers to log in and out of daily tasks, leaving details of their location and the expected duration. If an activity over runs, Guardian24 will automatically call the lone worker to verify their safety. If the lone worker cannot be reached, a nominated respondent will be notified informing them of the overrun activity.

Fully Accredited Service

Guardian24’s service is fully accredited to the highest industry standards, including BS 8484:2011, BS 5979 (Category II) and ‘Secured by Design’. Having these certifications enable Guardian24 to request a priority “Level 1” response from the local Police force – thus providing a far quicker deployment of the emergency services over more traditional methods.

Vincent Lavery – Head of Corporate Services at Niamh commented, “Niamh have a robust procurement process with a critical element being quality and assurance. BS 8484 meets this and therefore enables us to demonstrate not only quality but also a value for money solution. Within the social care sector this is critical.”

“As a result of using Guardian24’s technology, there is a greater degree of confidence amongst Lone Workers plus a realisation that as a responsible employer we place their safety squarely front and centre.”

“Staff have embraced this and have all stated they find it an excellent piece of technology to give further assurance.  Staff buy-in is evident when running usage reports as we are able to see instantly that they are now using Guardian24 to log every lone worker visit.  With Guardian24’s ARC response being a part of the service this has provided staff with reassurance that in the event of an emergency somebody will be listening live within seconds.”

Guardian24’s Marketing Director, Will Murray added “Guardian24 has vast experience working to protect thousands of support and social workers. We understand that the threats they face on a daily basis can be frightening and we take each and every one of those worker’s safety incredibly seriously. Our mobile phone application has been developed with ease of use in mind to ensure help can be summoned fast in the event of an incident.”