Joint response to Wales Audit Office Report on Housing Adaptations

Written by Stewart Harding

Tai Pawb and Disability Wales both believe that effective administration of housing adaptation services is an essential requirement in supporting independent living and wellbeing for older and disabled people in Wales.

Adaptation services must be delivered in a consistent manner that meets both current and future needs. Scrutiny of these services must provide an accurate assessment of the fairness of existing access not only to services but the information on how to obtain them.

It is for this reason that we welcome the report  from the Auditor General for Wales and its recommendations. We agree that a person centred approach integrating services across sectors must become the norm in all parts of Wales.

Martyn Jones, Head of Policy and Communications at Tai Pawb commented:

Tai Pawb has worked closely with Welsh Government, our members and key stakeholders on improving the provision of adaptations services for many years. There is good practice to learn from and share but the Auditor General’s Report clearly highlights inconsistencies that must be addressed.

We are also working closely with the EHRC on their Inquiry into Housing for Disabled People and believe that this work, combined with the Auditor General’s Report, will lead to tangible improvements in the design and delivery of adaptation services across Wales.

However, we must remember that supporting older and disabled people to live independently and promoting their wellbeing is not just about better services, it is about protecting fundamental human rights.

Miranda Evans, Policy and Programmes Manager at Disability Wales states:

Disability Wales gave evidence to the Welsh Assembly housing adaptation inquiry back in 2012 outlining the many issues faced by disabled people. It is frustrating to hear that although progress has been made in terms of simplifying the system through the introduction of Enable, a Welsh Government funded process, issues still exist.