the legal framework of care unit 7.2

the legal framework of care unit 7.2


key terms

legislation: a collective term for laws that are passed by parliment.

paramountcy principle: the principle of putting the welfare of the child first in all decisions affecting them

psychiatrist: a medical doctor who has a specialist training and qualifications that allow them to work with people experiencing mental distress

regulatory: this refers to monitoring and control

statute : an act of parliment

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legislation and the care system pg1

the proposal for a comprehensive system of health care, social security and education that were put forward by the bervidge report were translated into reality through an extensive programme of social legislation.

the key piece of legislation that helped form the basis of the welfare state in Britian were:

  • the family allowance act 1945 - providing an allowance to families for all children except the first.
  • the national insurance act 1946 - a comprehensive contributory scheme designed to help cover people's loss of earnings because of unemployment, retirement, sickness, disability or widowhood.
  • the national health service act 1948 - establishing a free health service that all people were entitled to.
  • the national assistance act 1948 - a safety net for those who were desitute (in total poverty) and not covered by the national insurance scheme. It also allowed for local authorities to provide care services and other facilities
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legislation and the care system pg2

these statues introduced publicly funded health and welfare services in a comprehensive way for the first time in the UK. A large number of other care-related statues have since been developed, debated and passed by successive governments since this watershed period in the middle of the twentieth century.

Successive governments have used legislation to:

  • establish care organisations, enable service provision and set standards for service delivery
  • create and maintain regulatory arrangements for monitoring care organisations
  • providing service users with the right to access and recieve public care services.
  • protect the rights of both service users in care situations.
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Disability discrimination act 1995

disabled people are a third vunerable group of care service users who now have their legal rights protected by legislation. The Disability Discrimination Act 1995 was passed to end long-standing discrimination against disabled people in:

  • employment
  • access to goods, facilities and services
  • the management, buying or renting land or property
  • education

the act introduced new rights to reduce unfair discrimination on the grounds of disability. In particular the Act now makes it unlawful for a provider of services to treat disabled people less favoutably than other people, for a reason related to their disability. since 1999, service providers have had to make reasonable adjustments for disabled people such as providing extra help or making changes to the way they provide their services. this includes adjusting premises to overcome physical barriers to access. as a result public buildings and other facilities such as road crossings and toilets must be made fully accessible for all users.

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the children act 1989

the children act 1989 is the most important piece of legislation currently affecting the provision of care services for children. various childcare laws were brought together and simplified by this act and by the children (scotland)act 1995. these statutes have given children certain legal rights, whilst also imposing legal duties on parents and child care workers tp promote each childs welfare and protect them from any form of abuse.

the important principles introduced by the children act 1989 include:

  • the welfare of the child is considered paramount in any decisions relating to them. this is known as paramountcy principle
  • wherever possible a child should be cared for and brought up by their own family
  • the parents of children 'in need' should be given help and support to bring up their children. Any help should be provided as a service to the child and their family and should be provided in partnership with the parents. it should also meet each child's identified needs and to be appropriate to the child's race, culture, religion and language.
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the children act 1989, continued

  • children in danger should be kept safe and be protected by effective intervention
  • children should be consultated about decisions affecting their future and should be kept informed about what happens to them.
  • parents continue to have parental responsibility for their children even when their children are no longer living with them. They should be kept informed about thier children and participate when decisions are made about their childs future.

the children Act 1989 affects.....

  • foster carers
  • parents
  • nursery and playgroup workers
  • paediatric practitioners
  • residential care workers
  • child and family social workers
  • teaching staff
  • child nurses
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the Human Rights act 1998

the human rights act 1998 is a recent addition to equality law in the UK. it is important in relation to care environments because it entitiles people resident in thr UK to seek redress for infringements of the human rights by a public authourtity.

Care clients have a.... :

  • right to liberty
  • right to respect for private and family life
  • right ot marry and start a family
  • right to freedom of thought and expression
  • right to life
  • right to freedom from torture, inhumane or degrading treatment
  • right to enjoy and protect own possessions
  • right to freedom from unfair discrimination.
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NHS and community care act 1990

the NHS and community care act 1990 introduced some of the biggest changes to public care services since WW2. these changes affected both the structure and practice of health and social care.

the NHS community care act 1990 radically changed the way the adult social care services were provided in the UK. in particular it ushered in an era of community care ofr adults with social care and support needs. the idea of community care was that people with cronic or long-term care needs who would normally have lived in state run institutions would be provided with sufficient support to live in their own homes or at least in a supported 'homely' or demesticated setting.

as a consequence the NHS and Community care act 1990 continues to support the provision of both community based care and its delivery by a mixxed economy of care provision.

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