As the voice of the professional and strategic leadership organisation for social services in Wales, ADSS Cymru welcomes the opportunity to respond to the white paper.
The drive to deliver seamless, integrated services with the NHS in a fair and equitable way, coupled with the pressures of operating in a post pandemic environment with uncertain financial resources means that the national voice of professional leadership for social work needs is needed now more than ever.
ADSS Cymru is responding to the consultation on the Welsh Government white paper to ensure that the voice of professional leadership in social care contributes to the thinking around the proposals in this document. The views of our members are based on their professional knowledge and judgement, as well as the real-world experience of delivering services to their respective communities.
ADSS Cymru recognises the challenges we all face in delivering high quality, innovative and responsive services to those who need care and support. Our nation faces a range of challenges which impact on peoples’ lives and the ability of health and care services to deliver. As an organisation we have consistently pointed to a range of issues which impact the delivery of social care across services for both children and adults, and which will now be compounded by the consequences of the pandemic and the potential state of our public finances.
Many of the challenges we face have been with us for some time. They are not new. We accept that the changes in our population profile with continue demands on children’s services, a growing number of older people living longer with different needs, the public finance challenges and pressure of austerity, the fragility and nature of the care market, and the complexity of commissioning are well founded concerns and need to be addressed.
We have welcomed the significant developments in partnership working in a number of ways, whether between local authorities and local providers, regionally with neighbouring local authorities and health boards, and nationally with/through Directors and Heads of Services supporting the development of national policy and legislation. Partnership working at its best, where trusting relationships are formed and nurtured, can lead to better outcomes, more effective and innovative services. However, done badly, it can become a hindrance and have a significant impact on the people in receipt of care and support and those who deliver those services.
In our collective response to the white paper, we have answered the specific questions posed by Welsh Government, but have also drawn attention to a number of issues that we feel require addressing. Please download the attachment to read our response.