Strategy

The county council are proposing a

Life-Long Stratergy for Disability 2018 – 2023

A consultant employed by the counrty council made a presentation to a meeting we arranged on Wednesday  23rd May, below are the main points raised, which have been submitted by the charity as part of the consultation

THE STRATEGY

  • Promote independence within the disability community
  • Provide information and early help to promote independence
  • Encourage people to help themselves
  • Operate the service with less money to meet needs (25% funding cut over 5 years)
  • Give early support so less help is needed in the future
  • Meet eligible needs and promote independence
  • Council to pay only for eligible care
  • Promote best value

WORK THAT NEEDS TO BE DONE FROM OUR EXPERIENCES

  • There is a blanket assessment of disability which fails to separate learning disability as this will undoubtedly fall in the eligible needs criteria.

e.g. weight issues documented in strategy proves that learning disability cannot make informed decisions about their own welfare

  • There needs to be better communication between agencies and healthcare to accommodate high level needs.

e.g. adult with learning disability in sheltered accommodation takes a fall. On site carers are not allowed to pick them up so an ambulance is called. This is standard practice!

  • Better training for care staff to support learning disability in the community.

e.g. carers are often transient, young, under qualified, and do not interact with dependents or know anything about them other than their first name!

  • Greater understanding of the difficulties working in the community and living independently has for learning disability

e.g. adult with learning disability so distressed in the work place that he locked himself in the toilets all day and nobody noticed!

  • More community facilities as currently most are run by parents and carers of learning disability themselves

e.g. there is a list of facilities, which looks substantial, but very few are suitable for learning disability as all have been contacted by us to ask the question!

  • An appreciation and more support for elderly carers who at the moment are avoiding the council reaching crisis point as they continue to support their adult children, both physically and financially

e.g. parents are entitled to a standard of care for their children when they can no longer do it for themselves. Adult with learning disability being toileted by carers was neglected which resulted in medical treatment

  • Address and support day care and respite opportunities so that carers can continue to lead fulfilling lives too.

e.g. all council buildings are being closed to save money so parents are reliant on more expensive private provision and respite care is miles away!

  • Ensure there is adequate transport services to reach support and reduce the dependence on the NHS where it is not necessary.

e.g. wheelchair users pay expensive taxi fares for commuting to health appointments and community provision.

  • An understanding that learning disability is a vast range of individual needs which require assessing as such and some deterioration expected.

e.g.  A learning disability is not going to improve, people with learning disability will not somehow heroically rise above the impairment and join in a conspiracy to deny that their intellectual limitations matter, so provision needs to be anticipated

  • Trust and mutual respect to be rebuilt between the council and learning disability families. An understanding that there will be no improvement in their disability and whilst they may not make any financial contribution to society they have a right to be respected and cared for.

The most vulnerable people in society are being compromised by a potential 25% cut to their support by a county that cannot get its priorities in order, but prefer to spend resources on excessive salaries at senior levels following the setting up of Independent Futures in 2014. A restructuring is required to achieve an equitable 25% salary saving.