Mencap responds to the Localism Bill
Tuesday 14 December 2010
David Congdon, Mencap's head of campaigns and policy, said:
"Local authorities are undoubtedly best placed to know the needs of their local community so we cautiously welcome the greater devolution of power to the local level. However, with increased local decision-making comes the risk of a postcode lottery. The localism agenda also raises questions around how loudly the voices of the most vulnerable will be heard, which is especially worrying, considering that people with a learning disability have little access to democratic participation.
"The Localism Bill introduces changes to the way social housing allocation will work in the future and offers local authorities greater freedom to fulfil their responsibilities towards homeless people by placing them in the private rented sector. We are concerned that shorter term tenancies both in the private and social sector will not be suitable for people with a learning disability. Mencap will be monitoring the effects of these changes on the housing choices and the suitability of the market for people with a learning disability."
For more information please contact Jenny Brannan on 020 7696 6017 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to editors
- About Mencap
Mencap supports the 1.5 million people with a learning disability in the UK and their families and carers. Mencap fights to change laws and improve services and access to education, employment and leisure facilities, supporting thousands of people with a learning disability to live their lives the way they want.
We are also the largest service provider of services, information and advice for people with a learning disability across England, Northern Ireland and Wales. See http://www.mencap.org.uk/ for more information.
- About learning disability
A learning disability is caused by the way the brain develops before, during or shortly after birth. It is always lifelong and affects someone's intellectual and social development. It used to be called mental handicap but this term is outdated and offensive. Learning disability is NOT a mental illness. The term learning difficulty is often incorrectly used interchangeably with learning disability.