A report from the learning disability charity mencap, based on data from a freedom of information request to 152 local authorities, an online survey of 280 people with learning disabilities and their carers and a survey of nearly 200 professionals suggests that nearly a third of local authorities have closed day services in the last three years resulting in 1 in 4 adults with a learning disability remaining at home.
The report suggests that cuts and increased charging have had a major impact on people with learning disabilities resulting in many left feeling isolated and cut off from communities.
The report finds:
- Nearly 1 in 3 local authorities have closed day services in the last three years
- 1 in 5 of those who have closed day services are not offering alternatives
- 57% of people with learning disability known to services do not receive any day service, compared to 48% in 2009/10.
- 3 in 5 local authorities have increased day services charges by an average of 70%.
They also found that 9 in 10 respondents with a learning disability felt that had not been adequately consulted about changes. 64% were not asked for their views at all.
In a press release to accompany the publication of the report, Mencap’s chief Executive, Mark Goldring said:
It is deeply worrying that progress towards greater participation of disabled people in the community and mainstream society risks being undone by a failing system that has long been ignored and is now creaking under the pressure of increased demand and budget cuts.”
You can read the full report here: Stuck at Home, the impact of day services cuts on people with a learning disability, Mencap, 2012