Losing in the care lottery

Young disabled people are being ‘lost’ in social services
systems which are not geared to promoting their rights to family
life, a report by the Who Cares? Trust reveals this week.

‘Disabled children experience patterns of care which would never
be tolerated for non-disabled children,’ it says.

Social services support is ‘crucial’ if disabled children are to
stay at home. But, it argues, respite care is not always the
solution because it is a form of institutionalisation.

Often a lack of local educational provision means disabled
children must leave home.

The current focus on supporting care leavers completely ignores
the needs of young disabled care leavers, and only one of the eight
social services departments surveyed for the report had attempted
to address their needs specifically.

Successful leaving care strategies need social services to work
with local housing providers, says the report.

Only one authority provided disability equality training for its
child protection workers.

* Gone Missing? is available from 0171 251 3117.

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