Learning disabilites: Adults living at home in Scotland missing out

Adults with learning disabilities in Scotland living with their families appear to receive fewer choices and services than those in supported accommodation, according to a charity report out today.

The study, ‘Missed out, missing out’, by social care charity Quarriers found widespread inequalities in local authority planning. Annual spending per head for people with learning disabilities living at home ranged from £7,000 to £30,000, according to responses from 11 Scottish councils.

Eligibility criteria was increasingly being used to manage demand for learning disability services and the 12,000 adults who live at home are less likely to meet criteria in boroughs with a higher bar than other service users, said the report.

The charity suggests that a focus of resources on supported housing may disadvantage the majority of adults with learning disabilities who live at home.

Lack of data

The report is also critical of the lack of data held by local authorities on the needs of people with learning disabilities living at home. One council admitted that it did not know if “people were dead or just not getting a service”.

Quarriers chief executive Dr Phil Robinson said: “This research demonstrates significant and alarming inequalities in planning and resource allocation. Adults with learning disabilities living in the family home have become invisible. Their needs and aspirations, and those of the families who care for them, are unknown; their future requirements disregarded and their right to recognition and resources ignored.”

Related items

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Mencap welcomes move as step on road to reducing health inequalities

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