Inspectors uncover core services funded by housing support money

The Audit Commission has found “a disturbing level of core
services” funded by Supporting People money that are not related to
housing support.

The commission’s Supporting People inspection coordinator, Domini
Gunn, told delegates at a conference in London this week that
inspections of councils’ Supporting People programmes had uncovered
“deregistered” care homes still providing high levels of non
housing-related care funded by the Supporting People

These included former care homes for people with learning
difficulties or severe mental health problems and frail older

According to the Commission for Social Care Inspection, around 800
care homes in England deregistered in order to qualify for
Supporting People funding by May 2003. Councils have been urged to
help vulnerable people live more independently, including getting
them out of residential care.

But Gunn said Supporting People inspections had found that some
people in “deregistered homes” were unable to recognise they held a
tenancy agreement. She stressed the need to acknowledge that some
people would never be able to achieve independent living.

“I know it’s blasphemy, but we need an open and honest debate over
what’s appropriate”.

Gunn also warned councils that refugees, travellers and people with
HIV/Aids were being excluded by Supporting People teams because
they were “rarely on their agendas”. She said the teams were
concluding that these groups did not need their support without
conducting any proper needs analysis.

Gunn warned councils that Supporting People team inspections to
date had revealed “poor prospects for improvement, with uncertain
promises for the future”. Criticisms include excluding external
providers from meetings, poor partnerships with health and
probation, failing to complete service reviews and failing to pay
providers properly.

Office of Deputy Prime Minister’s head of housing, care and
support, Wendy Jarvis, warned delegates at the conference,
supported by Community Care, that councils would not meet their
grant conditions unless they worked in partnership with health and

More from Community Care

Comments are closed.