Government social care work-stream must include the voices of Disabled people
It was revealed last week that the Government has organised a roundtable in Parliament to discuss social care for disabled adults of working age without inviting a single Disabled People’s Organisation. An invitation was extended to Baroness Jane Campbell after she raised a question in the House of Lords, when she discovered that Mencap and Scope had already been invited for some time. Neither charity had raised the lack of DPO involvement or made Baroness Campbell aware the meeting was taking place despite her ongoing and committed work within Parliament to ensure the voices of Disabled people are heard.
Baroness Campbell has accepted the invitation and will be attending the meeting to raise her concerns about the exclusion of DPOs. Please tweet messages of support to her ahead of the meeting: @BnsJaneCampbell.
We have also drafted the attached letter to send to Caroline Dinenage, Minister for Health and Social Care, who organised the meeting, calling for meaningful and accessible engagement with Disabled people and our organisations within the Government’s working age disabled adult social care work-stream.
At a time when the social care crisis is having a direct detrimental impact on Disabled people, our voices must be heard.
To sign the letter please email email@example.com with your name and organisations before 2pm on Tuesday 6 March.
Caroline Dinenage, Minister of State, Department of Health and Social Care, Richmond House, 79 Whitehall, London, SW1A 2NS
Cc Jeremy Hunt, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care
We writing to urge that Disabled people’s own organisations (DPOs) are actively involved in the Government’s work-stream to look at social care for working age Disabled people. Our organisations, run and controlled by Disabled people are able to provide valuable insights into the lived experience of social care users, including an understanding of key barriers and identification of potential solutions. There is an important and fundamental difference between the national charities who speak for Disabled people and DPOs where we speak for ourselves.
We support concerns raised by Baroness Jane Campbell that a round-table has been organised in Parliament on 28 February to which no single DPO has been invited and would ask for assurances that this exclusion will be rectified going forwards, with meaningful and accessible involvement of Disabled people and our organisations embedded within the work-stream.
Our involvement would contribute towards fulfilling recommendations from the Concluding Observations of the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities published in August 2017 calling on the UK Government to ensure “close collaboration” with Disabled People’s Organisations (DPOs). In particular, recommendation 45 (b) calls for “close consultation” with DPOs to address “appropriate strategies in the area of social support and living independently” and recommendation 45 (d) calls for a comprehensive plan, “developed in close collaboration” with DPOs aimed at developing independent living.
We look forward to hearing from you.
Tracey Lazard: CEO Inclusion London
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