When Valuing People was published four years ago housing was
flagged up as one of the key areas where choice and independence
for people with learning difficulties could be provided.
To bring about such choice some charities applied to cancel
registration of their care homes under the Care Standards Act 2000,
with a view to setting up supported tenancies to allow residents to
live more independently.
But confusion over what constitutes residential care and
supported tenancies is proving obstructive to a process that could
bring welcome freedom. And some fear that a few charities may try
to replace care homes with tenancies so they can obtain housing
benefit and Supporting People funding.
A test case in the Appeal Court this week did nothing to
alleviate either of these concerns. The Commission for Social Care
Inspection needs to step in and issue guidance to dispel this
uncertainty which is unhelpful for registered care home owners, but
most of all, is unhelpful for people with learning