Care and support in Wales will undergo its biggest change in a generation as landmark legislation nears completion.
The Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Bill today (Tuesday 18th March) enters the final stages of scrutiny in the National Assembly.
The Bill aims to transform the way social services are delivered through an approach that is focused on achieving the outcomes necessary to promote a person’s well-being – as an individual, as part of a family and as part of their community.
To do this it will ensure that people have access to clear information, advice and assistance and will place their voice and rights at the centre of decisions about their care and support.
The Bill will introduce, for the first time, a strong statutory framework for the protection of adults and has provided for strong national leadership arrangements for safeguarding people.
It also recognises the key role played by carers by giving them the equivalent rights to support as those they care for as well as the importance of both prevention and early intervention in helping people live independently.
Deputy Minister for Social Services, Gwenda Thomas, said:
“We are now nearing the end of three years of hard work which has been focused on a shared ambition – to make a real difference to the lives of those who need care and support in our society. In the face of continued pressure on public services, the Welsh Government wants to be able to continue to offer quality services that protect people in need of care and support and which improve their lives.
“To do this we have to make sure social services are sustainable for generations to come and this legislation is key to making sure that happens. By placing a clear focus on the rights of an individual and by making sure services are based on outcomes, we can also be confident that social services in Wales are focused on what people need most.
“Throughout its passage through the Assembly, this landmark Bill has been subject to robust scrutiny. We have listened, debated at length, and dealt with more amendments than ever before. I am confident that the Bill is all the stronger for it and I welcome the contributions from all parties which have been included as it has developed.
“I look forward to the next stage of debate and to the final vote, with a great degree of pride in what we have achieved so far and with every confidence in the abilities of everyone involved in social services to deliver the changes that this legislation will require.”
For more information please see http://wales.gov.uk/topics/health/socialcare/bill/?lang=en