Independent advocacy support

An advocate is an independent person with suitable training and experience who can speak for you and express your views when you find it difficult to do yourself.

They will also help make sure you understand what is happening. The advocate's only role is to help you be involved and make sure your voice is heard. They work independently of the council.

The council must make sure everyone with care and support needs is fully involved in decisions that shape their lives. Some people might have help from a family member or friend. For others, if there is no family member or friend to help, the council can appoint an independent advocate to help in such areas as:

  • Care assessments
  • Carers assessments
  • Being consulted on your care and support
  • Support at any reviews that take place
  • Support for safeguarding enquiries
  • Making a complaint or appeal
  • Joint Continuing Health Care Assessments

How do you get advocacy support?

To get the support of an advocate the council needs to work out if you have a substantial difficulty in:

  • Understanding the work being undertaken with you, or
  • Expressing your view clearly about what you need for your care and support, and
  • You have no one suitable around you to support your understanding and involvement

A social worker will assess this when you, or someone for you, first contact the council. If you think that you, or someone you are supporting, might need advocacy, please contact the council's Access Team:

Someone will talk about your options, or refer you to the right service to help you.

Factsheet 1: Independent advocacy support

Read the full factsheet about independent advocacy support for more information, including:

  • How the advocate is independent of the council
  • Independent advocacy for prisoners with care and support needs