Highland Council to consult on Self-Directed Support
Families and carers of children and young people who are eligible for Self-Directed Support are to be consulted on the continuing use of direct payments for services in the Highlands.
Self-Directed Support is available for children and young people who have been assessed as requiring care or support. Plans for Self-Directed Support may include:
A direct payment.
Working with a care provider to manage the child or young person's budget.
Arranging care or support for the child or young person.
A combination of the above options.
The Highland Council is responsible for administering Self-Directed Support for children and young people in Highland.
The Council has commissioned the Highland Children’s Forum (a registered charity) to carry out a consultation on Self-Directed Support. The consultation aims to establish the long-term demand for direct payments and to seek families’ and carers’ views on options for the re-allocation of social care funds to free up resources currently committed to existing services.
Proposed options were presented to the Council’s Education, Children and Adult Services Committee in February 2015.
Bill Alexander, Highland Council’s Director of Care and Learning said: “The Council is seeking equity in the use of Self-Directed Support resources. While the financial decisions are complex, we are keen to take account of the views of the users of these services. We will try to find out what level of understanding families have of the SDS options and benefits available to them. People will have the opportunity to prioritise the options, and to come up with other ideas.”
He added: “In the second stage of the consultation, people who access an SDS budget will be asked about their experience of the process. Those who do not have a budget will be asked about any barriers that are preventing them from doing so.”
Highland Children’s Forum will consult children, young people and their families using a variety of different methods and will target urban, rural areas in Highland.
Further information on dates and locations of focus groups will be made available in due course.