Disability (Services for children with complex disabilities)
A person has a disability if he or she has a mental or physical impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on their ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities. This covers physical difficulties, sensory impairments and learning disabilities.
The Children and Young People’s Department provide services for children with disabilities which include the:
- Short Break services for children with disabilities
- Specialist social work and family support services for children with complex disabilities
- Residential short breaks provision for children with complex disabilities
- Occupational Therapy assessments for adaptations and equipment
- Home and community based support via private providers/agencies
- Direct payments – for parents to pay their own personal assistants
- Information about carer services and or parent support groups
Children with a complex learning, physical disabilities or sensory impairments or acute medical and health needs will usually be assessed by the Children with Disability team currently based at the Willow Tree Resource Centre. Children with moderate or mild disabilities will be assessed by an Assessment Team.
Under Section 17 (11) of the Children Act 1989, the Department has a duty to safeguard and promote the welfare of children, and to establish whether a child is in need by providing for an assessment of their needs. Children with a disability are classified by the Act as children in need.
The ‘Carers (Recognition and Services Act) 1995’ gives a right to an assessment of their own needs to carers who provide a substantial amount of care on a regular basis. This includes young carers (young people under 18) and parents of disabled children. The Carers and Disabled Children Act 2000 also allows for parent carers and disabled young people who have been assessed to receive Direct Payments in lieu of service provision. The Carers Equal Opportunities Act provides a duty to ensure parent carers are made aware of their right to a carer’s assessment. To discuss a carers assessment or your child’s needs please contact the Central Advice and Duty Team on 0151 606 2008.
You can read more about how we are developing services for disabled children and their families through the Short Break services for children with disabilities programme.