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Our framework sets out some practical guidelines about how adult social care employers and workforce can work well with families. 

Working with families, friends and carers is an important part of delivering person-centred care. Families, friends and carers are often a vital part of the life of someone who needs care and support. When services know how to work well with families, the outcomes for individuals can be improved. 

Whilst this sounds like a common sense approach, some employers have a culture that sees families as a problem and difficult to work with.

 

Framework for adult social care employers

Our framework sets out some good practice guidelines about what adult social care employers and their staff need to know and do to work effectively with people’s families, friends and carers.

The guidelines in the framework can be a measure of good practice such as using it as a checklist to help you to review and assess how your service and staff work with families, friends and carers.

Use the framework to highlight what learning and development around ‘working with families’ might look like. Adult social care staff can present the framework to families etc to help them to understand what they can expect from the services and staff that support them. 

Adapt and build on the framework, and tailor it to your service, the people you support and their families, friends and carers.

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This framework sets out good practice guidelines about what adult social care employers and their staff need to know and do to work effectively with people’s families, friends and carers. Adapt and build on the framework, and tailor it to your service, the people you support and their families, friends and carers.

 

Understand that parents just want to know what’s happening. If a suggestion isn’t going to work, that’s ok, but tell us why. Be open to explaining your decisions.

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We have trust, admiration and gratitude for our son’s support.

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For ease, we’ve used the terms ‘families’ and ‘family members’ throughout the framework. This includes reference to people’s partners and wider connections, including friends, distant relatives and carers, and shouldn’t be read as people who are only formally related by birth or marriage.

 

The framework adopts a person-centred approach. The Mental Capacity Act 2005 states that we should assume that people have the mental capacity to make their own decisions.

If someone has the mental capacity to make a decision, when it needs to be made, their choice should take precedence over anyone else’s. This means that sometimes, in practice, you might need to help people to explain the decision that they’ve made to family members who disagree with it or do things that family members disagree with.

This framework explains some of the ways that you can manage these situations, to ensure that the individual is always at the heart of any decisions around working with families, friends and carers.

Where a person lacks the mental capacity to make a decision, you need to work in line with relevant legislation and guidance, including the Mental Capacity Act (2005) Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (currently under review) and the Human Rights Act.