Changes to short breaks services for children with a learning disability

Clare Lucas made this Freedom of Information request to Middlesbrough Council

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was partially successful.

Dear Middlesbrough Council,

Under the Freedom of Information Act, I kindly request the following information in relation to short breaks services for children with a learning disability in your local authority:

1) How many children aged 0-18 with a learning disability were known to social services in a) 2009/10, b) 2010/11 and c) 2011/12?

2) How many children aged 0-18 with a learning disability attended short breaks services, as set out in paragraph 4 (‘Types of services which must be provided’) of the ‘Breaks for Carers of Disabled Children Regulations 2011’, in:

i. 2009/10
ii. 2010/11
iii. 2011/12;

and what is your projection for short breaks service use in 2012/13?

3) Do you have a short breaks services statement in accordance with paragraph 5 (‘Short breaks services statement’) of the ‘Breaks for Carers of Disabled Children Regulations 2011’?

4) If you have published a short breaks services statement in accordance with paragraph 5 (‘Short breaks services statement’) of the ‘Breaks for Carers of Disabled Children Regulations 2011’:

i. when was it published?
ii. please provide details of your latest statement

5) How many short breaks services, as set out in paragraph 4 (‘Types of services which must be provided’) of the ‘Breaks for Carers of Disabled Children Regulations 2011’, closed in:

i. 2009/10
ii. 2010/11
iii. 2011/12;

and are you planning to close any short breaks services in 2012/13?

6) If there have been short breaks service closures within the local authority, have any alternative services been put in place for those who attended the short breaks service?

Yours faithfully,

Clare Lucas

Middlesbrough Council

Dear Clare Lucas

REF NO: 3169.1

Thank you for your recent enquiry, received on 01 August 2012, in relation
to short breaks services for children with a learning disability.  I can
confirm that your enquiry is receiving attention and a response will be
provided within 20 working days following receipt of your enquiry as
allowed under the Freedom of Information Act legislation.

In some circumstances a fee may be payable and if that is the case, I will
let you know the likely charges before proceeding.

Please do not hesitate to contact me direct on (01642) 729696/729698 or
email [Middlesbrough Council request email] should you require any further advice or
assistance with this or any other matter.

Yours sincerely

Joseph Bartoletti
Records Management Officer

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Middlesbrough Council

Dear Clare Lucas

REF NO:  3169.1
I am writing to confirm that Middlesbrough Council has now completed its
search for the information you requested on 01/08/2012 in relation to
Short Break Services for Children with a learning disability

In your request you asked for the following information:

1) How many children aged 0-18 with a learning disability were known to
social services in a) 2009/10, b) 2010/11 and c) 2011/12?
   
Response:  There are children who are "known to us" i.e. have a social
worker and have a disability, which may or may not include a learning
disability, but where there is no short break service in place, either
because the family do not want/require this at this time or because this
is in the process of being set up.  The number of children where the case
is open to social work and where learning disability is recorded is as
follows:
       
        2009/10        121
        2010/11        134
        2011/12        159  

2) How many children aged 0-18 with a learning disability attended short
breaks services, as set out in paragraph 4 (‘Types of services which must
be provided’) of the ‘Breaks for Carers of Disabled Children Regulations
2011’, in: i. 2009/10, ii. 2010/11, iii. 2011/12; and what is your
projection for short breaks service use in 2012/13?
   
Response:  Not all those included above are children "known to ourselves"
in the sense of them being open to social work or having had an
assessment.  Many of them have accessed a short break directly.  Many
short break services are "open access".  So they are "known to us" in that
a service is provided, but not all "known" in terms of being an open case.

The number of children known to Social Services and accessing a short
break service was:

        300 in 2009-10
        400 in 2010-11
        476 in 2011-12

This includes all children with disabilities, including physical
disabilities and learning disabilities, and children with health needs.
 We are not able to provide separate figures for learning disability as
our data is not recorded in this way.
Our expectation is that the number for 2012-13 will be 500+
   
 3) Do you have a short breaks services statement in accordance with
paragraph 5 (‘Short breaks services statement’) of the ‘Breaks for Carers
of Disabled Children Regulations 2011’?
   
We do have a Short Break Service Statement in line with the 2011
Regulations concerning Short Breaks.  You can access this using the
following link:

http://www.middlesbrough.gov.uk/index.as...

4) If you have published a short breaks services statement in accordance
with paragraph 5 (‘Short breaks services statement’) of the ‘Breaks for
Carers of Disabled Children Regulations 2011’:  i. when was it published?
ii. please provide details of your latest statement
   
It was published, as required, by 1st October 2011.  It was updated in
April 2012 and is available on the Council Website using the above link.

  5) How many short breaks services, as set out in paragraph 4 (‘Types of
services which must be provided’) of the ‘Breaks for Carers of Disabled
Children Regulations 2011’, closed in:  i. 2009/10, ii. 2010/11, iii.
2011/12;  and are you planning to close any short breaks services in
2012/13?
   
   We have not closed any short break services.  We are not planning to
close any in 2012-13

 6) If there have been short breaks service closures within the local
authority, have any alternative services been put in place for those who
attended the short breaks service?

Not applicable as none have closed

If you have any queries about this response, please do not hesitate to
contact me direct on (01642) 729696/729698 or email
[Middlesbrough Council request email].  Please remember to quote the reference number
shown above in any future communications.

If you are unhappy with the way your request has been handled you may ask
for an internal review within 40 days of receipt of the response. You
should write to:-

Chris Davies,
Corporate Complaints Manager,
P.O. Box 503,
Ground Floor,
Town Hall,
Middlesbrough,
TS1 9FX
If you are not content with the outcome of the internal review, you have
the right to apply directly to the Information Commissioner for an
independent review.  The Information Commissioner can be contacted at: -
Information Commissioner’s Office,
Wycliffe House,
Water Lane,
Wilmslow,
Cheshire,
SK9 5AF
Yours sincerely

Nathan Oxnard

Information Governance Officer

Members' Office
P.O. Box 503
Ground Floor
Town Hall
Middlesbrough
TS1 9FX

Tel.  01642 729696

FAX. 01642 729882
Email:   [Middlesbrough Council request email]

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