William Eichler 07 September 2017

Council criticised after reducing care for autistic brothers without consulting mother

Council criticised after reducing care for autistic brothers without consulting mother image

A London council has been criticised for reducing the care and support packages of two autistic brothers without involving their mother in the decision.

A report from the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman (LGO) criticised Lewisham council for failing to involve the mother in the assessment and decision making process properly before it decided the younger boy did not need respite accommodation and reduced his direct payments.

It also said the council failed to take the mother’s complaint through the statutory children’s complaint procedure and then delayed dealing with her complaint once it had gone though the proper process.

‘In this case the children’s situation had not changed but Lewisham council reduced the level of care it provided,’ said LGO Michael King.

‘The mother has been left upset about not knowing why their support was reduced, or having any kind of input into its review.

‘The statutory children’s complaints procedure is there to protect vulnerable children and young people and has been operational for more than 10 years.

‘Councils should know by now how to identify a children’s services complaint and use the correct process.

‘However, regardless of which statutory procedure is used, councils should follow simple good practice: involve people in decisions which affect them, and respond promptly to concerns.’

The council was told to apologise and pay the mother £400 for the avoidable distress caused and a further £150 for the time and trouble in pursuing her complaint.

A Lewisham Council spokesperson said: ‘We accept the Ombudsman's findings and we are acting on the recommendations and have apologised.

‘We have already reviewed our processes and procedures that are in place to ensure this situation doesn’t happen again.’

SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Head of HR/OD

Babergh & Mid Suffolk
£60,000 circa
The role will involve working closely with the Senior Leadership Team and Chief Executive to lead our People Strategy and... Ipswich, Suffolk
Recuriter: Babergh & Mid Suffolk

Customer Services Assistant (Libraries)

Essex County Council
Up to £9469 per annum
Please note this is part time position (18.5 hours a week) across Uttlesford, mainly based in Dunmow and Stansted and is to be offered on an initial 6 England, Essex, Dunmow
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Customer Services Assistant (Libraries)

Essex County Council
Up to £18938 per annum
Please note this position is to be offered on an initial 6 month , fixed term basis. Do you enjoy working with people? Enthusiastic about playing a ke England, Essex, Saffron Walden
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Customer Services Assistant - Mark Hall Library

Essex County Council
£17000 - £18950 per annum
Please note that this position is a part time role, offering 18.5 hours per week and is offered on a Fixed Term Basis for a period of 6 months. England, Essex, Harlow
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Senior Practitioner - Family Support & Protection

Essex County Council
Negotiable
Please note this is a fixed term contract or secondment opportunity until December 2020 In Essex County Council we are "Serious about Social Work". H England, Essex, Basildon
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Local Government News

Latest issue - Local Goverrnemnt News

This issue of Local Government News explores what impact the increase to the Public Works Loan Board rate have on councils’ capital schemes and why adopting AI will not just improve customer service response times for councils.

This issue also finds out how local government pension funds are backing infrastructure projects and calls on local government to get better value from its technology spend.

Register for your free magazine