WHAT DO THEY WANT: WHAT SHOULD THEY DO?
What do Parents, Families, Carers, Friends want for their disabled family member
and themselves. And what should Governments do?
Those with a family member already living independently from their family, need the assurance of consistent quality of life care and quality of life living for their member with a disability. Parents, families, carers, friends need to be actively assured, and it visually demonstrated that their person with a disability is receiving care, support and human rights within the direction, intention and spirit of recognised care and support standards.
Those on the endless "WAITING LIST", the DSR (Disability Support Register)/"SNR (Service Needs Register)", not only need to know accommodation and support provisions are immediately available, but that these are openly seen to provide care, support and human rights that are actively within the direction, intention and spirit of recognised care and support standards.
Getting more money from government, the main proposal of the Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry into Supported Accommodation, may provide more nuts and bolts, bricks and mortar, staff numbers, etc. But, the service quality for people with a disability, their parents, families, carers and friends will not change from the present, generally, inconsistent and in-crises services, unless the government sets firm outcome expectations on existing and new funding provided to any service provider, including the DHS.
Families who have for years provided quality of life care for their family member with a disability, do not want to see their member's quality of life drop like a brick, when they finally move into a supported accommodation group home where the care is little more than basic minder care and the parents feel they need to live forever.
Parents, families, carers, friends, need to clearly see a service where the support staff are actively supported by all levels of service management to actively provide consistent care, support and human rights within the direction, intention and spirit of recognised care and support standards, and within the spirit of the person/s with the disability is considered by direct care support staff to be their second family.
The report of the Parliamentary Inquiry into Supported Accommodation identified several broad themes relating to the future provision of supported accommodation for Victorians with a disability. As regards service quality, these are: "Promoting innovation and continuous improvement, and improving implementation processes and evaluation".
The Committee heard considerable evidence relating to the experiences of older carers who are concerned for the future of their family member with a disability. Many people in these situations told the Committee of their fears and uncertainties about what will happen when they can no longer continue in their caring role.
Some of the Committee's Recommendations are:-
9.1 That the Victorian Government improves enforcement of penalties for service providers that do not comply with relevant standards and regulations in the Disability Act 2006
9.3 That the Victorian Government develops a communication strategy to assist individuals, families and the community to better understand the complaints process in the disability service system.
9.4 That the Disability Act 2006 is amended to require the Department of Human Services to address all complaints referred by the Disability Services Commissioner.
9.5 That the Victorian Government broadens the jurisdiction of the Disability Services Commissioner to include complaints about individual support packages.
9.7 That the Victorian Government commissions an external review of the Community Visitor program to assess the effectiveness of the current model.
9.8 That the Victorian Government amends legislation to require government to respond to the Community Visitor annual reports within six months of the tabling of their reports.
9.14 That the Victorian Government funds service providers to employ practice coaches/coordinators to provide mentoring to staff in the development of new skills as part of its workforce strategy.
9.20 That the Victorian Government commissions an external review to assess the consistency of quality service provision across both government and CSO service providers in the disability sector.
9.21 That following a review of cost and consistency in disability service provision; the Victorian Government [DHS] makes a public statement regarding the future role of government [DHS] as a service provider, policy-maker, funder and regulator of disability services.
10.1 That the Victorian Government legislates for the appropriate involvement of families in caring relationships in the planning, treatment and support of the person they care for.
In summary: "No more government money into the DHS bottomless pit of buy not manage their way!"
Tony & Heather Tregale
LIFESTYLE IN SUPPORTED ACCOMMODATION (LISA) INC.