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Guidance for Practitioners from Social Care and Health Services in Developing Culturally Competent Practice

At its heart was the aim of enabling people with learning disabilities and their families from BME communities to have a stronger voice, assisting them to access services which were more appropriate and meaningful to their individual requirements and circumstances.

Families from BME communities gave a consistent message that too many

  • staff from statutory agencies do not follow up the action they have agreed and effectively lack professional ownership are reactive rather than planning ahead with the family
  • do not ensure that families have the right information to pursue matters themselves, effectively keeping people disempowered
  • move on too quickly to enable a proper degree of mutual trust and understanding to be developed, and do not ensure continuity of contact and knowledge

The project concluded that practitioners need to exhibit a number of qualities to respond effectively to people and families from BME communities. They need to:

  • take the time to build up trust
  • take responsibility for guiding people to community services or groups that can help them
  • ask people what they think of the services and supports they receive, rather than being reactive and waiting for a complaint
  • follow through and do what they say they will do
  • demonstrate cultural competence