Welcome to the ILG newsletter…


Welcome to the September newsletter from the Independent Living Group (ILG).  Providing news for Individual Employers and Direct Payment support staff across the UK.
Inquiry into challenging decisions about adult social care
The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has launched an inquiry into how older and disabled adults and unpaid carers can challenge local council decisions about social care and support in England and Wales.  Find out more here.
You can also contribute and help this inquiry by completing the online survey by the 15th September deadline.  Links to the survey below.
Survey link – England
Survey link – Welsh
Survey link – Easy read

Report about Personal Assistant Pay

The ILG recently became aware of a report into Personal Assistants pay put together by JUST Works Ltd and Sheffield City Council, published earlier this year.
The report concluded, amongst other things, that despite PAs being critically important to the well-being of individual employers, pay rates across the country are inconsistent and have fallen behind similar roles in the care sector.

You can read the full report here.

The ILG are also aware that the Welsh Institute for Health and Social Care, University of South Wales have been awarded a contract to undertake similar research across Wales.  We will keep a close eye on this so we can report back any findings as and when they are published.

Support for Personal Assistants

Considering the report into PAs pay and working conditions we thought it was worth collating and sharing some of the resources out there for PAs across the UK. 
In England, Skills for Care have some information on their website which you can find here and a more extensive guide produced in 2019 in collaboration with other organisations including Vibrance and Living Options Devon which you can find here.
In Wales you can access the Personal Assistants Online Guidebook here which is packed full of useful info for PAs and individual employers.  This guide was written by key professionals working to support individual employers from a broad range of organisations including Unison Wales, Torfaen County Borough Council and Social Care Wales.
In Scotland, the Scottish Social Services Council have produced a guide for PAs or people considering moving into the profession which you can find here

The ILG are pleased to announce that our training department is now Skills for Care endorsed to provide Direct Payment/Individual employer training.
For many years we have provided tailored sessions for individual employers and those that support them so it is great to be recognised in this way.  
If you are interested in finding our more about the workshops we can provide virtually or in person please e-mail training@independentlivinggroup.com

Reminder re COVID Pay in Scotland and Wales

Just a quick reminder from ILG Support that both Scotland and Wales have a 100% pay system in place for Covid-19 related illnesses that applies to Personal Assistants instead of SSP. This includes actual symptoms of Covid-19 as well as test and trace notifications but does not include self-isolation when coming back from abroad and so mirrors the SSP criteria.  
In both countries this scheme is in place until 30th September 2021. 
Please see respective Government guides below: 
Scotland – https://www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-social-care-staff-support-fund-guidance/
Wales – COVID-19 statutory sick pay enhancement scheme | GOV.WALES

Adult Social Care Scotland

There has been a lot of talk recently around the English Governments long awaited plans for social care reform.  The ILG hope they look to Scotland (where they appear to be much further forward) for a steer.  
An independent review of Adult Social Care in Scotland has recommended to the Scottish Government that they create a National Care Service.  Keen to take this forward the Scottish administration have now opened a consultation seeking views on creating a comprehensive community health and social care service to support people of all ages.
To find out more about this and get involved there are a series of engagement events being planned throughout Scotland alongside an online consultation form both of which can be found on the Scottish Government webpage here.