A severely disabled woman and her family have won a landmark victory against Calderdale Council over her care needs.
The High Court has published a judgement that the council’s decision to exclude disabled adults and their families from the selection of their care providers was unlawful.
The council had reversed its policy of allowing disabled adults and family members to sit on the evaluation panels used to select care providers because it believed that it would be in breach of procurement law.
However, the court found that the council had misunderstood the legal position.
The family of the woman, who can not be identified for legal reasons, hope they will now be able to sit on the evaluation panel which decides what care the woman needs.
Her father said they are well aware they would not have a deciding vote but they felt it was vital they were included in the decision-making.
“We just want what’s best for our daughter,” he said. “It means everything for us to have a say.”
Mark Goldring, chief executive of Mencap, said: “Disabled people and their families should be able to make decisions about the care and support services they rely on. This is long-established national policy.”
Calderdale Council’s director of adults, health and social care, Bev Maybury, said: “Because of an irregularity in the decision-making process, the court upheld a challenge against the council’s decision to change its policy. Having received the transcript of the judgment, the council is now considering its position and looking again at how we can best involve service users and their families in the procurement process.”