Consultation launched on improving social care services in Wales
The Welsh Government has launched a consultation on improving social care services in Wales and in particular the experiences of young people and children
The consultation, launched today by Deputy Minister for Social Services, Julie Morgan, is a key element of the Co-operation Agreement between the Welsh Government and Plaid Cymru.
One of the key issues it will seek responses on is proposed legislation to remove profit from the care of children looked after in homes run by private companies.
The government and Plaid Cymru’s vision is for the future provision of care for children in Wales to be provided by public sector, charitable or not-for-profit organisations and for public money invested in the care of children looked after to be spent wholly on services that “deliver better experiences and outcomes”.
“Our ambition is to redesign how we look after children and young people and eliminating private profit from the care of children is a key component of this,” Julie Morgan said.
“Children are at the heart of everything we do, and they have told us that they do not want to be cared for by privately owned organisations that make a profit from their experience of being in care.
“Profits should not be made from caring for children facing challenges in their lives.”
“I believe that eliminating profit from the care of looked after children and young people is vital to driving forward improvements in the lives of some of our most vulnerable citizens, Plaid Cymru’s Sian Gwenllian added.
“Working with Welsh Government, Plaid Cymru looks forward to seeing a new framework in place which will remove profit from the care of children looked after, as part of our belief that reversing outsourcing in the public sector should be supported where possible.”
Some councils have expressed concern at the proposals for removing profit from children’s social care, claiming it could cost Welsh councils millions.
Some private providers have also threatened to stop trading in Wales move across the border into England where they can operate freely.
The consultation, which runs until 7 November, will also consider:
- Enabling access to Direct Payments for adults eligible for Continuing NHS Healthcare, to allow them to decide how, when and by whom their care needs are met.
- Considerations of whether the duties to report children and adults at risk of harm, abuse or neglect should be expanded to apply directly to individuals within relevant bodies.
- Proposals to extend the definition of a ‘social care worker’ to include all childcare and play workers, to reinforce Social Care Wales’ support for the sector.
- Changes to improve how Social Care Wales supports and regulates the social care workforce and how Care Inspectorate Wales regulates and inspects services.
“I am determined that we continue to improve the quality of experience for everyone who uses our social care services,” Ms Morgan added.
“This consultation sets out how our proposals will help us to deliver our wider vision for the care and support available to families, children and young people.
“And will further strengthen the voice and control of disabled and seriously ill adults, and their careers, better supporting people to maintain their independence.”
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