Learning disabled adults don’t get to make enough of their own life choices

Charter group

Charter sets out recommendations to empower users of support services in Scotland. 

15th August 2016 by Gavin Stuart 0 Comments

People with learning disabilities don't get to make enough of their own life choices, a group of learning disabled adults has said.

The National Involvement Network (NIN), which is made up of 80 learning disabled adults from across Scotland, said it is time for this to change as it launched a Charter for Involvement.

The group want social care organisations and services to sign up to the 12-point plan to empower people with learning disabilities who require support services.

Stating that people should be at the heart of decisions about their lives, the charter sets out a raft of recommendations about how support is planned and run.

It calls for people to be involved at every stage of the decision-making process, from campaigning and policy making to choosing support staff and being supported if they make a complaint.

The idea for the charter is simple – who better to advise support services on how well they are doing than the people that use them

Lynnette Linton, NIN chair, said: “The idea for the charter is simple – who better to advise support services on how well they are doing than the people that use them. We all use care services in different ways and realised we all want to be more included in the decision that affect our lives. 

“Services signing up to the charter have helped us to live our lives more independently by including us in the decision affecting our lives. But there is still more to be done and that is why we are aiming for 50 signatures by the end of the year. 

“Having services sign up to the charter lets us know our voice counts “

More than 30 organisations have already committed to the charter and NIN hopes 20 more will sign up by the end of the year. The network is supported by ARC Scotland, who said the charter has already led to improvements in care services.

James Fletcher, ARC director, said: “The NIN has had a great response to the charter so far in terms of organisations getting involved and signing up to become part of it. I really think we can build on this though and reach our target of 50 by the end of the year.

“I really think that the work the NIN have done with the charter has improved services across Scotland and I would urge other organisations who would like to know more about the charter or to receive a copy to get in touch.”