Partnership boards ‘left on sidelines’

Many people with learning difficulties are still being denied the
chance to influence decisions about the services provided for them,
according to Mencap.

A survey by the charity, released this week, shows that the
partnership boards introduced under the Valuing People white paper
are being marginalised because they have no real power.

The boards are required to have at least two people with a learning
difficulty and two carers as members, but Mencap said major
decisions about cuts were still being made by social services
departments without the boards’ agreement.

Mencap’s head of external relations, David Congdon, said: “It is
disappointing to learn that they are not more visible to the
public. Little has changed in people’s lives because local
authorities still see learning disability services as such a low

The survey shows just 27 per cent of partnership boards are open to
the public.

– Out of Sight, Out of Mind from 0808 808 1111

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