Welsh Senedd consults on learning disability action plan

The Welsh Senedd is consulting on an updated strategic action plan for supporting people with a learning disability. We understand that the consultation closes at the end of February. We haven't seen a direct link on the Welsh Senedd website but please send your views to us by18 February so that we can compile a response. Learning Disability Wales is also gathering feedback for their response and is seeking views by 21 February.

The action plan builds on the work of the Learning Disability Improving Lives programme that ended in March 2021. It identifies and prioritises the key areas, actions and outcomes that will be the focus over the years ahead, including outstanding actions from the Improving Lives programme. It also addresses key issues identified by the Learning Disability Ministerial Advisory Group (LDMAG) in their Policy Priorities report submitted to the Welsh Government in May 2021. Learning Disability Wales have published a report detailing their priorities for the Senedd and priority actions focussing on helping services and people with learning disabilities. 

Given the ongoing public health situation and continued pressures on services, there is a focus on Covid recovery, particularly in the early years of the plan. The plan will therefore be formally reviewed after 2 years during spring 2024.   

The key areas covered within the plan are: 

  • Overarching/Cross cutting including cross-government activity that may not sit in one specific area 
  • Covid recovery 
  • Health including reducing health inequalities and avoidable deaths  
  • Social services and social care 
  • Facilitating independent living and access to services through increased access to advocacy and self-advocacy skills, engagement and collaboration 
  • Education including children and young people’s services 
  • Employment and skills 
  • Housing including appropriate housing, close to home, and access to joined-up services
  • Transport.

The plan provides a high level, strategic overview of areas of priority activity over the coming years. The section on employment is very short and pretty vague in its detail. The specific action tasks are:

  • Develop appropriate employment policies that fully incorporate the needs of people with a learning disability.
  • Maximise opportunities for people with a learning disability to access apprenticeship schemes.

The strategic action plan will be supported by a more detailed implementation plan that sets out the specific actions within each area that will help deliver the main themes in the action plan. Welsh Government plans to publish both documents by the end of March 2022.