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Agenda Item No

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

 

Cabinet Meeting: 08 May, 2013

 

Report of the Cabinet Member for Adult Services

 

Day Services for People with a Learning Disability

 

Purpose of the Report

1.             To propose that the day service currently provided at the Woodlands Centre and scheduled for closure because of the poor condition of the building is provided on a temporary basis at Hen Goleg. 

2.             To inform Cabinet about work being done to develop a revised service model and commissioning strategy for services to people with Learning Disabilities and, in partnership with Cardiff Council, a joint strategy for delivering appropriate 'Day-Time Activities'.

Recommendations

That Cabinet:

 

1.             Approves in principle relocating the day service provided at the Woodlands Centre to Hen Goleg, initially as a temporary measure, following engagement with service users and carers affected by these changes.

2.             Authorises the Director of Social Services in consultation with the Managing Director, the Cabinet Member for Adult Services and the Leader to make arrangements for transferring the service if a move to Hen Goleg is judged to be practicable for the current users of the Woodlands Day Centre.

3.             Supports development of a revised service model and commissioning strategy for services to people with Learning Disabilities and, in partnership with Cardiff Council, a joint strategy and action plan for delivering appropriate 'Day-Time Activities'.

Reasons for the Recommendation

1.             To ensure that the service is provided in a building which is safe and fit-for-purpose.

2.             To facilitate prompt action and service continuity.

3.             To ensure that day-time activities for people with learning disabilities meet the needs of service users and carers and deliver positive outcomes through promoting independence, community integration and skills development.

Background

3.             The Woodlands Day Centre in Barry is in a very poor state of repair.  In 2011, the Council decided to close it and transfer the service to the Gardenhurst site in Penarth.  This move was to be the final stage within a series of changes to day services provision as a whole.

Relevant Issues and Options

4.             A recent inspection of the kitchen in Woodlands has resulted in another very critical report regarding the condition of the building.  This means that timely relocation of the day centre to a more suitable and safer property has become even more imperative.  However, it is not possible to proceed at this time with the planned transfer to Gardenhurst because of the ongoing problems in renovating and adapting the premises. 

5.             The Council has a long-term lease on Hen Goleg (twelve years remaining), which is currently used as a day centre for people with a physical disability.  Subject to some minor access improvements to the changing facilities, officers judge that this venue has the space and capacity to provide in addition a day service to the clients attending Woodlands Day Centre.  Cabinet is asked to approve this move in principle, initially as a temporary measure.

6.             Current service users and carers will be asked for their views about the move.  If the outcome of this engagement process indicates that a move to Hen Goleg is practicable and acceptable to current users of the Woodlands Day Centre, the Director of Social Services in consultation with the Managing Director, the Cabinet Member for Adult Services and the Leader will make arrangements for transferring the service on a temporary basis initially.

7.             It is possible that the move from Woodlands to Hen Goleg may prove to be more than temporary because of problems incurred in renovating Gardenhurst as set out in another report to this meeting of Cabinet.  A more permanent transfer would have efficiency benefits as the Directorate could then use Hen Goleg fully during the period of the lease and reduce overall spend on running costs and maintenance across its day centre estate.  Rationalising use of buildings would help the Directorate to achieve the saving target (S20) identified in appendix D of the agreed Final Revenue Budget Proposals 2013/14 and Financial Strategy to 2016/17.  Before any longer-term decision in this respect can be made, an impact assessment and full consultation with service users and carers would have to be undertaken. 

8.             Resolution of the issues outlined in this report will help to inform production of a revised service model and commissioning strategy for services to people with a Learning Disability.  This will be presented to Cabinet in the first quarter of the new financial year.  Effective service commissioning requires that partners across social care (including users and carers, other directorates within the Council, the NHS, the third sector and the independent sector) cooperate in developing a shared model of service provision and in ensuring that the local market in social care delivers the range of services required.  

9.             The Directorate’s work on new service models and commissioning strategies is beginning to produce significant dividends, helping to:

·               provide opportunities for creative thinking about how services are delivered, encouraging dialogue and getting consensus about overall direction;

·               embed concepts which service users and carers believe are necessary to underpin wellbeing – choice and control, a rights-based approach, social inclusion and opportunities;

·               establish service priorities and clarity for staff, partner organisations and service users/carers; and

·               inform decisions about investment of resources and efficiencies,

10.        The revised service model and commissioning strategy will be informed by the work that this Council is undertaking with Cardiff Council, Cardiff and Vale University Health Board and Abertawe Bro-Morgannwg University Health Board to develop integrated, effective and cost effective services for people with Learning Disabilities across the two local authority areas.  It includes devising a joint strategy for ensuring that centre-based activities help people achieve and retain independence and community integration.  There will be individual action plans for each local authority area.  The strategy and action plan will be presented to both Councils for agreement.

11.        The action plans will be used as the basis for managing any specific project for remodelling services, which must fulfil the Council's statutory responsibilities for consulting with service users and carers about changes in the services they receive. 

12.        The day-time activity strategy will sit alongside and contribute to the aims and objectives of the Social Services business plan.  It will focus on the following priorities for our service users.

·               Helping me to be as independent as possible.

·               Helping me to get a job or volunteer.

·               Helping me to stay healthy and safe.

·               Helping me to be part of the community.

·               Helping me to be a lifelong learner.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

13.        The cost of renovating Woodlands to an acceptable standard has been previously considered and it is prohibitive.

14.        The Property Section is identifying the full costs of providing a new ramp at Hen Goleg (to increase access to the recently improved personal care facilities) and of installing temporary dividing walls (to maximise use of the hall space).

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

15.        There are no sustainability and climate change implications as a result of this report.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

16.        There are no legal implications as a direct result of this report and its recommendations.

Crime and Disorder Implications

17.        There are no crime and disorder implications as a result of this report.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

18.        Any move will represent a major change for service users but the service itself would be very similar.  The revised service model and commissioning strategy and the strategy for day activities are being developed in partnership with services users.  There are no direct equal opportunities implications as a result of this report.

Corporate/Service Objectives

19.        This report contributes to the following corporate objective: "working with partners to meet the diverse needs of our residents in ways that will safeguard and support those who are most vulnerable and in greatest need; help people to keep fit and healthy; and increase social cohesion and equality of opportunity for all."

Policy Framework and Budget

20.        This is a matter for Executive decision.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

21.        The day services are provided for residents from across the local authority area.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

Social Care and Health.                                      

Background Papers

Scrutiny Committee 6th September, 2010: Day Care Services for Adults in the Vale of Glamorgan - Minute No. 360

Cabinet 15th December, 2010: Modernising Day Care Services for Adults - Minute No. C1157

Scrutiny Committee 7th February, 2011: Modernising Day Care Services - Minute No. 861 

Cabinet 6th July 2011: Modernising Day Care Services - Minute No. C1372

Cabinet 25th February 2013: Final Revenue Proposals 2013/14 and Financial Strategy to 2016/17 Appendix D.

Contact Officer

Lance Carver, Head of Adult Services

 

Officers Consulted

Corporate Management Team

 

Responsible Officer

Philip Evans, Director of Social Services

 

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