I’ve blogged recently in response to the government’s Care Bill. We have a particular interest in the changes to the Bill which attempt to build a framework for a more strengths-based and community development focused social care system.
We’ve now published a full briefing on those aspects of the Bill and how we see them impacting upon people who use services and family carers, with five partner organisations:
- Partners in Policymaking
Every truly effective social care intervention leaves an individual better informed and connected and more confident. Every intervention should support the individual’s unpaid relationships and informal networks of support and avoid undermining key relationships or isolating the individual from natural support networks.
Current social care law governing assessments and eligibility is set up to focus exclusively on eligible needs and how services alone can meet those needs. Assessments are designed to ‘gate-keep’ services and can require people to go through a demeaning and disempowering process focused entirely on proving their vulnerability, often only to find they are deemed ineligible. Support which is or could be offered by family carers and others is often invisible in the current system, with any needs which are currently being met by carers treated as non-existent.
We think the Care Bill could be the beginning of changing that culture. But we are aware that others are more sceptical about the changes and fear they could add to the ways in which some councils try to avoid their duties to provide services. We think those are the right risks to focus on, but that, even in the current climate of cuts and fear, we need to be bold if we are to create a system which really works.
The briefing is available to download here: