Martin Routledge's latest blog following the Community Care and
Unison survey on personalisation.
The latest Community Care/Unison survey on
personalisation provides a timely piece of the jigsaw of
information needed for us to take stock and plan for action.
It will soon be complemented by the final Adass survey of
progress towards Putting People First goals and by the biggest
survey yet of personal budget outcomes and experiences (POET) by In
Control and Think Local, Act Personal.
There are many important findings from the Community
Care/Unison survey; I want to focus on three:
- A big majority of the respondents see more bureaucracy.
- The expansion of choice and control is happening but there are
some things limiting this.
- More respondents see personal budgets ultimately benefiting
people than not. The gap has narrowed slightly since last year but
this is unsurprising given the current environment.
These reflect In Control's experience. They offer us reasons for
optimism while showing what needs to change fast.
I'm a fan of the Fighting Monsters
blog. In a recent post this social worker eloquently described
her work, showing both the possibilities of personal budgets and
some frustrations of implementation, including limitations on how
and where money could be used and "managed personal budgets" that
look very like what went before.
In response to a blog of my own, another social worker said: "When
we had training on personalisation, we were all keen to get
involved. One of our concerns was the potential slip back from
support plans to old-fashioned care planning. We aim to meet
practitioners about these issues - when we have performance
deadlines, time limits and budgetary restraints, how do we really
make this work?"
These on-the-ground experiences of social workers point to some
Let's not waste money on bureaucracy. Let's help people plan
support in ways that allow creative use of resources while not
overburdening the process. Let's remove restrictions on how and
where money can be used, since these limit efficiency.
POET can help local people identify what they need to work on.
Places like Hartlepool have worked hard to cut bureaucracy. There
is learning from other places soon to be shared through Think
Local, Act Personal, outlining the minimum process needed for
self-directed support, with suggested models for reconfiguring
These offer the possibility of win-wins where social workers and
others can get on with their jobs, people can access and use
personal budgets with much less stress, delay and limited control,
and councils can avoid waste. Let's get moving!
Read previous blog posts.