Agenda Item No


The Vale of Glamorgan Council


Cabinet Meeting: 28 November, 2014


Report of the Cabinet Member for Adult Services

Services for People with Learning Disabilities: Day Opportunities Strategy 2014 - 2017


Purpose of the Report

1.         To secure Cabinet approval for the Day Opportunities Strategy 2014 to 2017 in respect of Adults with Learning Disabilities.


1.         That Cabinet notes this report.

2.         That Cabinet approves the Day Opportunities Strategy 2014 to 2017 for Adults with Learning Disabilities.

3.         That Cabinet refers this report to the Social Care and Health Scrutiny Committee for information.

Reasons for the Recommendations

1.         To provide Cabinet with an opportunity to consider the way in which the Social Services Directorate is responding to changes in the pattern of demand for services and in the expectations of service users.

2.         To ensure that people with learning disabilities have available day opportunities that are grounded in an agreed service model, which enables the Council to provide effective care and support within the resources available.

3.         To ensure that the Scrutiny Committees are able to exercise effective oversight of this key area of activity.


2.         The Day Opportunities Strategy for Adults with Learning Disability has been developed by Vale of Glamorgan Council's Learning Disabilities Service in partnership with Cardiff Council, service users, carers and the third and independent sectors.  Attached at Appendix 1, the strategy provides the Council with a coherent approach to planning, developing and improving.

3.         The Strategy complies with the Welsh Government's 'Learning Disability Strategy - Section 7 Guidance', which sets out the service principles and responses that local authorities should adopt across a range of issues affecting adults and older people with learning disabilities.  In 2007, in the 'Statement on Policy and Practice for Adults with a Learning Disability', Welsh Government confirmed a vision for the future of Learning Disabilities services based on a recognition that all people with a learning disability are full citizens, equal in status and value to other citizens of the same age.

4.         The Strategy also takes into account Welsh Government's policy statement, "Sustainable Social Services for Wales: A Framework for Action", which emphasises the need for local authorities to determine the priorities which it expects providers of social care to deliver to ensure that a public service ethos is at the heart of values for delivering services and to give adults and their carers who use services a stronger voice.  It will help to equip services for people with a learning disability for implementing the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014.  The fundamental principles of the new statutory framework system are about:

·           People - putting an individual and their needs, at the centre of their care, and giving them a voice in, and control over reaching the outcomes that help them achieve well-being.

·           Well-being - supporting people to achieve their own well-being and measuring the success of this care and support.

·           Earlier intervention - increasing preventative services within the community, to minimise the escalation of critical need.

·           Collaboration - Strong partnership working between all agencies and organisations.

Relevant Issues and Options

5.         It is estimated that, for the period 2013 - 2026, there will be a sustained growth in the need for social care, including day opportunities for adults with Learning Disabilities, ranging from 1.0% to 7.9% per year and with an overall average rate of 4.2%.

6.         A scoping exercise was undertaken by the Day Time Activities Steering Group.  This identified a wide range of activities and opportunities being undertaken by people with a learning disability.  Some of them facilitated access to generic, universally available opportunities alongside other citizens.  There is evidence that being present within the community leads to an increase in networks and social relationships for people with a learning disability and so this is the preferred model, wherever it appropriately meets the needs identified through individual assessments.

7.         The proposed Day Opportunities Strategy for People with Learning Disabilities 2014 to 2017 identifies how the Council will respond to rising demand and changing expectations on the part of adults with learning disabilities and their families within the resources available to the Council.  Production of the strategy has been used as an opportunity to further the Council's overall programme for improving and modernising the social care services it provides.  Extensive engagement has taken place with stakeholders, to ensure that the Strategy has been co-produced with service users and carers, drawing on their experiences and opinions about how to bring about improvement.  The Strategy takes into account the Council's Reshaping Services change programme for the Council as a whole.

8.         The Strategy contains an analysis of demand, supply and service gaps which sets out priorities and actions needed to ensure effective implementation.  It will assist the Council, working in partnership with Cardiff Council, to deliver a modernised, outcome-focused day service that looks to deliver creatively day opportunities via support planning, including a range of choices involving social enterprise and other social models of delivery.

9.         People can expect to receive support based upon the following values and principles:

·           Each person will participate in an individually designed, person centred and outcomes-led day opportunity.

·           Each person and their families/carers will have access to specialist information and advice relating to care and support and assistance in securing access.

·           People will be enabled to live their lives as independently as possible.

·           There will be improved access to preventative services, as appropriate, which may contribute to preventing or delaying people's needs for care and support or reducing the needs for care and support of people who have such needs.

10.      Work towards individualised provision will take into account the commissioning needs of the protected characteristic groups identified in the Equality Act 2010.  Each person's weekly programme will include elements of the following:

·           The opportunity to work towards supported employment, volunteering or contributing towards the well-being of others;

·           Activities which promote well-being through healthy living and exercise;

·           Lifelong learning and the development of skills for independent living and employment.

11.      In addition to social care and support, there are responsibilities for other parts of the Council in helping to provide wellbeing services and seeking opportunities for people with learning disabilities to access mainstream Council services.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

12.      There are no direct financial implications of this report, although it should help ensure that the Council's assets are managed efficiently and effectively.  The documents make explicit the fact that the Council and its partners face an exceptionally difficult financial climate over the new few years, coupled with increasing demand for services.  In these circumstances, it is essential that strategies for delivering social services establish financially affordable models of assistance and support as well as contributing to the most appropriate ways of meeting the needs of vulnerable people.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

13.      There are no direct sustainability or climate change implications, although effective implementation of the strategy should help to reduce waste.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

14.      Commissioning practice should not place constraints on people's statutory rights to have their need for social care met by the services which the Council makes available under the relevant legislation.

15.      The Social Services and Well-Being (Wales) Act 2014 became law on 1st May, 2014 and will provide the legal framework for improving the well-being of people and carers who need support, and for transforming social services in Wales, when it comes into force.  It is anticipated that the new Strategy will be compliant with the Act.

Crime and Disorder Implications

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

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

17.      Commissioning of care services has to ensure that they are accessible to all those eligible to receive them and Equalities Impact Assessments have been carried out as required.

Corporate/Service Objectives

18.      Community Leadership:

CL2 - Increase customer satisfaction and improve how customers access services by developing more integrated service delivery with our partners and being more innovative in how public buildings are used.

CL4 - Explore opportunities for working collaboratively within the Vale and regionally which will lead to improved services for customers, support innovation and deliver savings.

Policy Framework and Budget

19.      This is a matter for Executive decision.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

20.      There are no implications for individual Wards as a direct result of this report.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

21.      Social Care and Health.

Background Papers

Cabinet 16th November, 2011: Social Services Commissioning Framework 2011 and the Social Services Commissioning Strategy for Older People's Services 2011 - 2018 - Minute No. C1517

Cabinet 8th May, 2013: Day Services for People with a Learning Disability - Minute No. C1324

Cabinet 11th August, 2014: Reshaping Services - A New Change Programme for the Council. - Minute No. C2433


Contact Officer

Lance Carver, Head of Adult Services


Officers Consulted

Corporate Management Team

Amanda Phillips, Operational Manager (Learning Disabilities)


Responsible Officer:

Philip Evans, Director of Social Services