Independent living – Government action
UK Government actions
- In July 2020, the UK Government announced £62 million funding to local councils in England to accelerate discharges of patients with learning disabilities and/or autism from mental health hospitals into communities.
- In March 2020, the UK Parliament passed the Coronavirus Act (2020), emergency laws which introduced a number of significant time-limited changes, including in relation to statutory obligations and delivery of social care, mental health detention and treatment in England and Wales; and children’s care in England.
- In June 2020, the Disability Unit set up a Disabled People’s Organisations forum to strengthen its engagement with disabled people.
- In November 2019, the Disability Unit replaced the Office for Disability Issues and in April 2020, the Unit announced it would work with other government departments to develop a national disability strategy.
- In May 2019, the Mental Capacity (Amendment) Act introduced a new model for authorising deprivations of liberty (Liberty Protection Safeguards) where a person lacks capacity to consent.
- In April 2019, the Department for Transport announced that 73 rail stations across Britain would receive accessibility improvements as part of the £300 million Access for All programme.
- In January 2019, the NHS Long Term Plan for England introduced targets to halve the number of people with autism or learning disabilities who are detained in inpatient settings by 2023/24 – these targets built on previous commitments, including the 2015 Transforming Care Programme.
- In July 2018, the UK Government published its Inclusive Transport Strategy, which set out plans to make travel easier for disabled people.
- In November 2017, the UK Government published ‘Improving Lives – The Future of Work, Health and Disability’, a strategy to get one million more disabled people into work by 2027.
Read our assessment of the UK Government’s progress on independent living.
Welsh Government actions
Independent living is a partially devolved matter. Whilst social security, justice and employment are reserved to the UK Government, the Welsh Government has competence over housing, education, health and social care, and aspects of transport.
- In April 2020, the Welsh Government announced an additional £40 million to support adult social care services during the pandemic.
- In September 2019, following a public consultation, the Welsh Government published Action on Disability: The Right to Independent Living, an action plan to withdraw barriers for disabled people across a range of areas of life, replacing the previous framework from 2013.
- In April 2019, the Welsh Government published Housing Adaptations Service Standards, which set out minimum service expectations for adaptations.
- In December 2017, the Welsh Government published its Accessible and Inclusive Public Transport Objectives: Policy Statement.
- In February 2019, the Welsh Government announced new independent assessments for former recipients of the Welsh Independent Living Grant scheme who are dissatisfied with support packages from their local authority.
- In 2016 a National outcomes framework for social services was launched to report on progress against measures in the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014 on the wellbeing of people who need care and support.
Read our assessment of the Welsh Government’s progress on Independent living.