What we might think of as a disability can be wide and varied.
The definition of disability is set out in section 17(11) of the Children Act 1989. This states: ‘a child is disabled if he is blind, deaf or dumb, or suffers from mental disorder of any kind or is substantially and permanently handicapped by illness, injury or congenital deformity or such other disability as may be prescribed’.
The Disability Discrimination Act 1995 used a wider definition of disability:’1 Meaning of “disability” and “disabled person”.
(1)Subject to the provisions of Schedule 1, a person has a disability for the purposes of this Act if he has a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on his ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities.’
The Disability Discrimination Act 2005 and Equality Act 2010 further clarified the definition of disability to include conditions such as HIV or cancers.
The reason for including the definitions is that these are used to help identify who can access which extra service and support.
We will not attempt to cover all the types of disability in signposting to services, but your GP / health worker and or social worker can. There are many special support groups, but all parent carers are always warmly welcomed to any of our sessions. We are specifically funded to provide some sessions for Autism and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, but they are often relevant to a wide range of needs, so don’t be put off – we have to do this for our funder and not because we want to exclude you! You can find out about our workshops and Tii Hubs on our events page.
Cambridgeshire's Local Offer
Cambridgeshire County Council is responsible for providing any non-medical care services your child is assessed as needing. This could include equipment for daily living, home care, access to play schemes, and respite care so you can have a break. To access services, you’ll need to ask for your child to have a needs assessment. Your needs, and the rest of your family’s, can be considered during your child’s assessment.
If the assessment doesn’t address your needs as a carer, you can ask for your own carer’s assessment.
There are offers for children and young people of all ages. You can find out more here.
Cambridgeshire County Council’s Disability Team (Children)
You can request a social care assessment by calling 0345 045 5203. This is the first point of contact for all of Children’s Social Care. They will ask you some questions to help decide who is best placed to respond to your request. You can find out more on the Children’s Social Care webpage.
Cambridgeshire County Council’s Physical Disability Team (Adults)
The team support people aged 18 to 75 who are living with a physical disability. This includes adults with an acquired brain injury, which affects physical functioning. They also support disabled parents. You can read more here.
Time away from your child can often be beneficial for you both. Being overwhelmed and exhausted by your caring responsibilities can affect your health. If family and friends can’t always step in, respite care may be possible. Your GP or social worker can discuss all the options and organise the care. Alternatively, you could pay for respite care privately.
Find out more about carers’ breaks and respite care.
And you can always join our Tii Hubs. These are open to all parent carers.