Don’t Miss Out! A Guide to Benefits and Services for Disabled Children and their Families
The four countries of the UK have a variety of laws on the rights and services for children and their families, writes Rob Watson.
All this is outlined and clarified, including terms such as “disabled”, by this guide. A clear table of contents directs the reader to chapters and sections on a comprehensive range of topics relevant to the aim of the book.
Chapters on the support available from social services and education are helpful overviews of the procedures, but perhaps a little more could have been explained about the common assessment framework and keyworkers, as these terms are increasingly in use.
The A4 format allows a helpful summary column alongside detailed information in the main text. It rightly reminds readers to keep up to date with benefit changes through the annual Disability Rights Handbook.
The appendices with glossary and benefits checklist are helpful, although the list of relevant agencies and their contact details could do with specific references rather than the many general ones from the various chapters.
Such is the level of detail in the guide, many of the parents and carers, for whom it says it is designed, may still need the help of professionals if they are to benefit from its use. Nonetheless, the guide could be a useful reference point for staff from statutory and voluntary support agencies working with families who have disabled children.
Rob Watson is children’s network project co-ordinator, Durham Council