Advocacy and the duty to involve
Local authorities must involve people in decisions made about them and their care and support. No matter how complex a person’s needs, local authorities are required to help people express their wishes and feelings, support them in weighing up their options, and assist them in making their own decisions.
When does the advocacy duty apply?
The advocacy duty will apply from a person’s point of first contact with the local authority and at any subsequent stage of the assessment, planning, care review, safeguarding enquiry or safeguarding review. If it appears to the authority that a person or their carer has care and support needs, then a judgement must be made as to whether that person has substantial difficulty in being involved. If they do, is there an appropriate person that they are in agreement to support them? An independent advocate must be appointed to support and represent the person for the purpose of assisting their involvement if these two conditions are met. Please refer to our guidance notes for further information.