Agenda item

Greater Manchester Learning Disability Strategy Update


The Committee received an update on the implementation of the Greater Manchester Learning Disability (GMLD) Strategy which set out some of the challenges and successes in implementing the strategy, particularly in light of the Covid 19 situation.


The GMLD Strategy had been in place for over a year.  The following ten themes had been identified within the strategy, with Covid being added as an eleventh theme as it cross-cut all themes within the strategy –

·           strategic leadership;

·           advocacy;

·           belonging;

·           bespoke commissioning;

·           good health;

·           homes for people;

·           employment;

·           workforce;

·           early support for children and young people;

·           criminal justice; and

·           Covid-19.

Reports on progress were considered at the GM level on a bi-monthly basis for scrutiny and challenge. 


The update presented to Members included a summary of the progress to date across the themes, including an update on Covid impact and measures that had been put in place.  Particular attention was drawn to the ongoing review of accommodation for people with a learning disability; the implementation of alternative methods of working to support people; that while acknowledging the impact of Covid, work had been able to continue and, in particular, there had been some successes in the health theme in the supporting of annual health checks; and that despite many of the individuals with a learning disability finding the Covid disruption difficult to deal with, there had been good resilience within the cohort with people coping with the help of the support they had received.


In response to a query as to any themes emerging from the review of accommodation, Members were advised that key lines of enquiry had been into single occupancy and where service users had been in a particular accommodation for a lengthy period to consider whether there was a need to move or whether other options might be explored. There was an ageing population of people with learning disabilities who might need to move into alternate provision and a pilot exercise was being undertaken with a provider to see how an alternate set-up might operate in terms of care packages, costs and outcomes for individuals. 


With regard to training, education and employment, a piece of work had been undertaken prior to Covid to try and capture information about the people the service worked with and the employment offers, including apprenticeships, internships, funded schemes etc.  During the Covid period a spike in digital offers had been noted.  While college or remaining in education was an option in day services, a greater demand for jobs was being seen as service users sought normality in the Covid period.  Work was therefore ongoing with colleagues to bring this consideration into transition and to look at options for supported work, training etc and related funding. 


Further to a query concerning care leavers with autism and other disabilities transferring over to Adult Services, the Committee was informed that this was a significant area of work.  While this was currently dealt with on a case-by-case basis, the Service was working with colleagues to better understand, quantify and plan ahead for future accommodation, access to services etc needs.


In response to a number of further queries, the Committee was advised that -

·         day services were supported by individual personal budgets rather than being directly commissioned.  With regard to day services during the Covid period, providers had been advised of lockdown requirements and alternate means of support had been promoted and encouraged;

·         the Service looked to work closely with parents/carers and encourage the developing of a Carer’s Assessment that considered what support a parent/carer would benefit from.  The CCG had been approached with a view to their BME link worker who had worked on the Dementia Strategy also working on learning disability issues;

·         Miocare employed a number of support workers from the local community who could encourage and support those from the community who wished to live at Holly Bank; and

·         with regard to the promotion of working with people with a learning disability, Skills for Care was the national training body for people working in the care sector and, locally, Miocare publicised work with people with autism and learning disabilities.


RESOLVED that the report be noted and a further update on the implementation of the Greater Manchester Learning Disability Strategy be submitted in 12 months time.


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