How the social care system has failed me
Sophia explains how the current social care system has let her down.
I have had to fight for my needs to be met and still have a long way to go.
I need social care to enable me to live life on my own terms and become independent. So far, my needs have been ignored. My mental health and wellbeing have been impacted, and my conditions often flare up due to stress.
I was due to have 8 hours of support a week, which was reduced to 4.5 hours by a panel for no apparent reason. I was forced to receive care from the council reablement team, which is only meant to provide short term support, so it was unsuitable.
The reduced weekly hours that I accessed last year were not enough to cover my social or personal needs. I have also found it hard to find a personal assistant or an agency that could meet my care needs.
What social care looked like during the pandemic
I currently do not receive any social care due to complications created by the pandemic.
I was worried about the safety of having people come into my home during a pandemic. However, the local authority would not listen to me and failed to take my concerns seriously. My local council did not follow the new government guidance, which would let them meet my care needs in different ways. They failed to allow flexibility with my direct payments and instead locked them.
They didn’t even bother to check on me.
After failing to listen to my requests for help and support throughout the pandemic, the authorities closed my care package. The support just stopped.
I have now been left with no care for over a year and have to go through the whole assessment process again. The council tried to have an unregistered, unqualified social work assistant review my case instead of a social worker.
All social care services are different, but something needs to change as the current system fails too many people!
What I want social care to look like
I would want a more straightforward application process, shorter waiting times, and more flexibility within social care. Disabled people should have more say in their care. I believe that assessors should be trained to understand both physical and mental care needs.
To ensure the safety of disabled people, a social worker should be assigned as a point of contact, and councils should register and regulate care workers.
I believe that good social care is about a holistic approach, which allows a disabled person to choose how their care is delivered. I have had many problems with adult social care, but hopefully, this will change now that I have a new social worker. We are working to restore my social care.
I want to be able to have fun again and to be able to live the life that I want to, and, for that to happen, I need adequate support.
Our Care for Equality campaign
This is personal. One in five of us will have a disability in our lifetimes. Won’t even more people need better ways to live independently?
We all deserve personalised social care that works.