Deaf children at risk of losing vital services as local councils implement second year of savage cuts

 

Deaf children are at risk of losing vital services as local councils implement a second year of savage cuts, a new report by a deaf children’s charity has warned.

One quarter of England’s councils plan to cut vital support for deaf children this year, according to a report by the National Deaf Children’s Society.

The charity’s report, Stolen Futures, found that one in five councils will cut educational support for deaf children, even though deaf youngsters are already underachieving at school.

A further 50 per cent of councils said they were planning to “review” the way deaf children are helped at school.

Sixteen areas confirmed cuts to Speech and Language therapy that are likely to mean reduced support for deaf children.  

Twenty areas have made cuts to social care that include support for deaf children

Two thirds of councils failed to provide a clear picture of the social care support they provide to deaf children, even though deaf children are at higher risk of suffering from abuse and mental health problems

Jo Campion, Deputy Director of Policy and Campaigns at NDCS, said: “For a second year, deaf children across England are seeing the support they rely on to learn and communicate taken away. We will continue to fight every bad decision we uncover, but until councils are made to abide by the law and stop hoodwinking parents, our efforts will be hampered.

“The Government has set out ambitious reforms for Special Educational Needs support, including for deaf children, but these are inconceivable given the reality of local cuts.   The long-term impact of denying deaf children the support they need will be felt for decades to come – ministers must act now to make sure that deaf children have the bright future they deserve.”

The NDCS report also condemned authorities’ decision-making processes saying that there was a “culture of secrecy” at local councils.

The charity’s said it had uncovered a raft of “alarming practices”, including a failure of all councils planning cuts this year to provide an assessment of the impact this will have on deaf children, as required under the Equality Act.

Two-thirds of councils failed to provide information about when budget decisions were being made and how families could participate in them

Meanwhile, 49 councils broke the law by not providing information about their budgets for deaf children’s support, the charity said.

It warned that parents of deaf children were left powerless to challenge critical decisions about the support their children rely on. The charity called on ministers in the Departments for Education, Communities and Local Government and Health to use ministerial powers to hold councils to account over cuts that are putting deaf children’s futures at risk.

David Simmonds, chair of the Local Government Association’s children and young people board, said: “Councils take their responsibilities to deaf children very seriously. Services for deaf children, like services for everyone else, are being impacted by the very large cuts to councils – 28 per cent – that have happened since 2010.

“Because services are provided on a bespoke basis for each specific child, it is difficult to carry out a consultation because the service is just used by an individual.

All councils when they set their budgets go through detailed consultations including an equality assessment. I would expect that appropriate levels of consultation would have taken place with all people affected.”  

News
peopleHowards' Way actress, and former mistress of Jeffrey Archer, was 60
Sport
Romelu Lukaku puts pen to paper
sport
News
Robyn Lawley
people
Arts and Entertainment
Unhappy days: Resistance spy turned Nobel prize winner Samuel Beckett
books
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
News
people
Life and Style
Troy Baker and Ashley Johnson voice the show’s heroes
gamingOnce stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover
News
i100
Life and Style
Phones will be able to monitor your health, from blood pressure to heart rate, and even book a doctor’s appointment for you
techCould our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?
News
people
Extras
indybest
Travel
Ryan taming: the Celtic Tiger carrier has been trying to improve its image
travelRyanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?
Sport
Usain Bolt confirms he will run in both the heats and the finals of the men's relay at the Commonwealth Games
commonwealth games
Life and Style
Slim pickings: Spanx premium denim collection
fashionBillionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers 'thigh-trimming construction'
News
Sabina Altynbekova has said she wants to be famous for playing volleyball, not her looks
people
News
i100
Life and Style
tech'World's first man-made leaves' could use photosynthesis to help astronauts breathe
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

SAP Project Manager

competitive: Progressive Recruitment: SAP PROJECT MANAGER - 3 MONTHS - BERKSHI...

SAP Project Manager

competitive: Progressive Recruitment: SAP PROJECT MANAGER - 3 MONTHS - BERKSHI...

Senior Investment Accounting Change Manager

£600 - £700 per day + competitive: Orgtel: Senior Investment Accounting Change...

Microsoft Dynamics AX Functional Consultant

£65000 - £75000 per annum + benefits: Progressive Recruitment: A rare opportun...

Day In a Page

Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices
Could our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?

Could smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases?

Health Kit and Google Fit have been described as "the beginning of a health revolution"
Ryanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?

Can we learn to love Ryanair again?

Four recent travellers give their verdicts on the carrier's improved customer service
Billionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers

Spanx launches range of jeans

The jeans come in two styles, multiple cuts and three washes and will go on sale in the UK in October
10 best over-ear headphones

Aural pleasure: 10 best over-ear headphones

Listen to your favourite tracks with this selection, offering everything from lambskin earmuffs to stainless steel
Commonwealth Games 2014: David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end

Commonwealth Games

David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end
UCI Mountain Bike World Cup 2014: Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings

UCI Mountain Bike World Cup

Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings
Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star