The Voluntary Organisations Disability Group

Association of Directors of Adult Social Services
Date: January 3, 2008
Embargo: Monday January 7, 2008

An agreement between directors of adult social services and leaders of the countrys major charities for disabled people has been signed committing both groups to work towards their common purpose: improving the quality of life for adults with disabilities, their carers and their supporters.

The Voluntary Organisations Disability Group works with some 700,000 adults with disabilities, while ADASS represents all directors of adult social services in England and Northern Ireland. The framework for co-operation between the two organisations says they are pledged to identify areas of common concern which can be most effectively addressed through:

Enhanced sharing of information,
Increased collaboration, and
More dedicated joint work.

In a jointly signed Concordat, they express their joint aim as being to embed a culture for people-driven practice and service that is in accord with the underpinning principles of the governments White Paper Our Health, Our Care, Our Say.

The document says that the framework will ensure that the ADASS's commissioning expertise, operational experience, planning skills and networks are brought together with the VODG's expertise in service delivery, specialist knowledge and commitment to innovation.

To achieve this, ADASS and VODG will seek to:

Ensure that the commissioning and provision of services for adults with disabilities are given proper priority with respect to their needs and expectations,

Work together to influence central government policy and to provide well-informed feedback on policy implementation and economic outcomes,

Support each other by making every effort to share information on initiatives and developments of potential mutual benefit.

Other areas in which VODG and ADASS will collaborate include workforce issues and workforce planning, good practice and research, as well as influencing regulatory bodies with the aim of ensuring that regulation keeps pace with innovation and person-centred outcomes.

Anne Williams, President of ADASS, said: This is an important and exciting development for disabled people as we bring the complementary skills of our two organisations together. The professional expertise that VODG offers disabled people will be well-matched by the rapid advances in commissioning techniques that directors of adult social services bring to the table.

John Adams, VODGs General Secretary, said: "On behalf of our members the VODG is delighted to sign this Concordat with ADASS which very positively reflects our shared values and determination to work together towards improving the life chances of disabled people. It recognises the critical relationship that exists between commissioners and providers and the need for mature co-operation in order to use resources to greatest effect."

ENDS

For further information contact:
Anne Williams, President, ADASS, 0161 793 2201
John Adams, General Secretary, VODG, 07917 670 509
Drew Clode, ADASS Policy/Press Adviser, 020 8348 5023/07976 837755

NOTES TO EDITORS

The VODG works with 700,000 disabled people living throughout the UK - providing services that promote independence, choice and control. VODG members share common values and have a combined annual turnover in excess of £1 billion.

Members of VODG include

 Adepta

 Aspire

 CARE

 Crossroads

 Grooms-Shaftesbury

 Guide Dogs

 HFT

 Jewish Care

 KeyRing

 Leonard Cheshire Disability

 MacIntyre

 MCCH

 Mencap

 Multiple Sclerosis Society

 Norwood

 Papworth Trust

 Queen Elizabeths Foundation for Disabled People

 RNIB

 RNID

 Scope

 SeeAbility

 Sense

 Sign

 St. Elizabeth's Centre

 Sue Ryder Care

 TACT

 The Brandon Trust

 The Disabilities Trust

 The National Society for Epilepsy

 Thomas Pocklington Trust

 United Response

 Vitalise

The Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) represents directors of adults social services in local authorities in England and Noerthern Ireland. As well as having statutory responsibilities for the social care of older people and adults with disabilities, ADASS members might also share a number of responsibilities for the provision and/or commissioning of leisure, library, housing, culture and arts services within their councils. ADASS grew out of the Association of Directors of Social services (ADSS) following the division of local authority services for adults and children.