Advocacy support for parents with learning disabilities, involved with Children’s Services

I am writing to make an open government request for the information to which I am entitled under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

When Children’s Services are involved with a family where a parent has learning disabilities/difficulties, the parent has a statutory right to participate fully in the process, from the outset (Human Rights Act 1998, articles, 6,8,14 and Equality Act 2010 sections 20 and 47).

Please confirm: 

How and at what stage do parents with learning disabilities/difficulties (whether formally diagnosed or not) involved with your Children’s Services obtain advocacy support?  

Our adult social care advocacy contract enables parents with learning disabilities who are going through child protection procedures to be supported at all stages of the process, but only if the parents meet the Care Act eligibility criteria. 

Which advocacy organisations do you rely upon, to provide this service in your areas?

Statutory adult social care advocacy is provided by the Devon Advocacy Consortium, for which the lead agency is Living Options Devon. 

Do you fund these services by block contract, spot purchasing or another method? (please specify) 

These services have been funded by spot purchasing, mostly by children’s services and sometimes by adults’ services. 

Under which budget(s) is this funding made available? E.g. Adult Services / Children’s Services / pooled budget / statutory advocacy / other (please specify). 

On the rare occasions when Care Act eligibility is met then funding comes from the adult social care budget for statutory advocacy, but it is most often funded by spot purchasing by children’s services.