April 28, 2011

As Peter Porter said of HSSD’s 2020 Vision in Business Brief magazine this month “Once in a while, something comes along that almost restores your faith in government”.
GDA members were inclined to agree and, having been critical of HSSD actions in the past, we felt that it was important that we showed our support for this big step forward.
As a result of our media release below, we were quoted in the Guernsey Press and interviewed on BBC Guernsey. Here’s what we said:
“Members of the Guernsey Disability Alliance welcome the Future 2020 Vision published in the May Billet and congratulate HSSD on the depth of thought and work that has gone into it.
“The 2020 Vision has the needs of disabled islanders at its core. Issues that are directly relevant to our members make up at least seven of the eighteen ‘key factors’ listed in the report.  Currently, disabled islanders and their families can feel like outsiders, forced to expend much-needed energy fighting for the support they need.  They feel on the periphery of a system that was built without them, a system that was, until now, seemingly set in stone.  Sometimes a service simply doesn’t exist, like short respite breaks for people with a severe mental illness.  Sometimes there is a service, but it is heavily oversubscribed, as is the case with speech and language therapy or help to gain employment.
“Yet supporting disabled islanders to have a reasonable quality of life needn’t cost more money. As the report says, it’s a matter of the efficient use of the various forms of existing funding.  Importantly for us, HSSD’s Vision includes prioritising resources by a careful assessment of actual need, rather than historical precedent.  We are realists, however, and appreciate that there is a big difference between writing down a vision and actually achieving it.
“To build a new health and social care system for Guernsey in the 21st Century, States members will need to make tough decisions and civil servants will have to manage complex changes. Guernsey Disability Alliance members are keen to give our full support to the process, starting with the public consultation”.

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