Caroline Flint MP pledged her support for families with disabled children.
This week the MP joined parents and children visiting parliament with the Disabled Children’s Partnership, a coalition of more than 50 disability and children’s charities working to improve health and social care services for families with disabled children.
Caroline said: “The event organised by the Disabled Children’s Partnership was a great opportunity to meet with families and learn more about the realities of caring for disabled children - and why good quality health and social care services are so essential for the health and wellbeing of their family.
“I am delighted to support the Disabled Children’s Partnership’s 5 step plan to help address the growing crisis in health and social care services for disabled children and their families. The 5 steps includes a reviewing funding of respite provision for disabled children and families.
“These services provide a lifeline for many families and often it’s quite basic services such as short breaks or equipment and adaptations to the home, that help them stay together, work and have a quality of life most families take for granted. Families with disabled children give back to our community and economy in so many different ways and that’s why I’m proud to pledge my support for them today.”
Amanda Batten, Chief Executive of Contact and chair of the Disabled Children’s Partnership, said: “Families with disabled children face four big challenges: There are not enough services, many of those that exist are not good enough, families cannot access them easily, and services do not always work together and communicate well with each other. Our 5 step plan marks the next phase of the Disabled Children’s Partnership’s Secret Life of Us campaign and pushes for real change while shining a light on the challenges that families with disabled face and the changes we want to see to help overcome them.”
The Disabled Children’s Partnership 5 step plan includes:
Step 1 Make disabled children a priority: Provide ministerial leadership to ensure a cross-departmental approach to improving outcomes for disabled children and their families.
Step 2 Review current funding: Review funding of short breaks provision for disabled children and families.
Step 3 Clarify existing rights: Clarify current rights and entitlements by co-producing with families guidance for local authorities and clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) on their existing statutory obligations.
Step 4 Create a Fund: Improve health and social care services for disabled children by providing an early intervention and family resilience fund.
Step 5 Change the system: Commission a review of health and social care law, to strengthen and clarify rights and entitlements for disabled children and their families
Said Caroline: “Too many people don’t understand the challenges families of disabled children often face. The Secret Life of Us campaign is to help share the experiences of disabled children and their families, so more people appreciate the services and support they need.”