Government launches £25 million independent living scheme to help people with learning disabilities

The Government has launched a £25 million housing and technology fund to help people with learning disabilities live independently.

Local authorities and community organisations will be invited to apply for a share of the funding which will allow the creation of a range of housing and technology options for people with learning disabilities.

Applicants have until 28 October 2016 to apply for a grant.

The primary aims of the fund are to:

  • use new technologies to improve and adapt existing accommodation, enabling people to remain living independently;
  • prevent unnecessary in-patient admissions; and
  • encourage community-based solutions that promote independence and choice over housing.

David Mowat, Minister for Community Health and Care, said: “The Government is determined to improve the life chances of people with learning disabilities, and to make sure they never feel excluded from society. We want to harness all the benefits of technology to help achieve this.

“I hope this investment of £25 million will inspire many exciting and innovative projects which will make a hugely positive difference to people’s lives.”

An estimated 15 per cent of adults with learning disabilities have a secure long-term tenancy or their own home, the report says, and the fund will enable more people to live as independently as possible with the best care and support.

Alicia Wood, Chief Executive of Learning Disability England, said: “Learning Disability England welcomes this £25 million fund to help create housing solutions for people with learning disabilities. We know that a lack of housing choices for people with learning disabilities is only partly down to the need for capital, and what stops people and their families getting the solutions they want is a lack of creative thinking.

“We are particularly pleased that the fund is being used to promote person-centred solutions and create new models of housing and support that give people with learning disabilities a real stake in their communities.”