The boards, established in October 2001, were announced in
Valuing People, the white paper on learning difficulty services
published in 2001.
The DoH’s intention is that the boards, which will exist
in all local authority areas, should build on existing inter-agency
planning structures. They will be concerned with services for
adults. Children’s services will continue to be dealt with by
children’s services planning structures.
The boards will work within the overall framework of local
strategic partnerships. They will not be statutory but will be
responsible for developing the joint investment plan for ensuring
the white paper’s objectives; overseeing inter-agency
planning; commissioning of comprehensive, integrated and inclusive
services which offer real choice; ensuring that people are not
denied a service due to lack of competence or capacity among
service providers; the use of Health Act flexibilities; and
ensuring arrangements for a smooth transition into adult life for
learning disabled young people.
Members of the boards include service users and carers, and
senior representatives from health, education and social services,
housing, leisure, employment and independent providers.
Other UK equivalents: Joint planning forums were established in
1983/4 under the Mental Handicap Strategy in Wales