National initiative Unit
For the scenario I am investigating there are a number of laws and regulations that have to be considered and adhered too, they are as follows: European convention on human rights and fundamental freedoms (1950) This piece of legislation was introduced after the Second World War and relates to the human rights every individual can expect whilst living and working in the European Union. The act was necessary as so many people had, had their human rights violated during the war years. Following this many individual acts were passed to ensure that discrimination was against the law.
In 1 998 the human rights act was the document that updated previous legislation and importantly made sure that any citizen had the right to take legal action against any person or organization that disrespected their human rights. This included all health and social care services. Collectively, human rights legislation is a powerful tool to ensure that those who are more vulnerable in society have the backing of the law in relation to their rights. In the residential care home it is important that we recognize the diversity of needs of our clientele and are aware of their needs and preferences.
The sex scrimp nation act (1975) This act was introduced to protect both men and women against discrimination or harassment in relation to their gender. This included employment, education, advertising or in the provision of housing, goods, services or facilities. In the main it was to address the discrimination that was mainly taking place against women. Employers would often reject a potential female employee in favor of a man as they felt a male would be more reliable as women both have children and care for them.
In more recent years the equal pay act has defined clearer guidelines in relation to pay truce. In nursing the pay scale does not discriminate and care staff are employed for their capacity to do the job and men and women receive the same remuneration. In the care home there are both male and female workers who are employed for their skills and ability to address the complex needs of the clients. There is training provided and pay is linked to qualifications and job roles regardless of gender. In addition, we have both male and female clients and we provide for their needs appropriately.
The mental health act The mental health act was introduced initially in 1983 and has had a number f changes in the years up until 2006 (see appendices 2). The purpose of this act was to make sure that the appropriate action could be taken when people displaying mental health or learning difficulties got the help, care and treatment they needed both for their own health or safety and the protection of others. This was an important step because those with these problems were often not given the care and support that there condition required.
In the I-J, there were large mental hospitals which catered for a variety of conditions and needs but gave little thought to the needs of the individual. It was a case of the individual fitting into the programmer offered whereas today we appreciate the needs of the individual and how important it is to tailor care to need. The large hospitals and institutions were closed down as it was decided that people were better off living in smaller units or being cared for in the community. However, there was still not enough legislation to provide the necessary protection.
In 2005 the mental capacity act was introduced which provided a frame work that empowered and protected vulnerable people who are unable to make their own decisions. The act States army who can take decisions in various situations and how things should be carried out. For example, two doctors now need to sign a sectioning order for a patient to be detained because of their mental health. Prior to this, there have been cases where people have been sectioned with no right to complain. This act states very clearly those people that have the power to make decisions.
It enables people to plan ahead for a time when they might lose their mental capacity. This act was seen as important as so many people are now suffering with some form of dementia in their later years. It meant hat health care professionals such as doctors and social workers had a professional duty to work with the most vulnerable, in their best interests and to empower them to make their own decisions. There is still much to be done with mental health care which is sometimes referred to as the Cinderella of the health service.
New initiatives in relation to mental health have been introduced as it was clear in some areas that care of the community was not working as well as it should. Northern Ireland has similar legal frameworks to England but under the Northern Ireland assembly they can have variations. Legislation related to children Two pieces of legislation were passed in 1989, one the convention on the rights of a child’ and the other ‘the children’s act’. The first was issued by EUNICE and it provided a framework for the rights of the child.
It specifically highlighted children’s rights in international law and included the principles and standards for the treatment of the children’s workforce. The children’s act concerns the UK only and is designed to protect the child from significant harm and to keep them safe and cared for by setting standards. Organizations working with children have to provide policies and procedures n relation to how they are promoting the children’s act in their environment. An example of this is the safe guarding procedures that are in place in schools.
Every school has to have its own safe guarding policy which outlines all procedures and highlights training. This is an extremely important document and in schools every member of staff needs to know who the child protection officer is and to have read the safe guarding policy. In the school attend every member of staff has a summarized copy included in their handbook and the full copy is available in the staff room and online. Every Taft member has to sign this at the beginning of each academic year to show that they understand what they have to do should they become concerned about any safe guarding issue.
Training is given to key professionals and the policy is revised every year in relation to new legislation. The children’s act was revised in 2004 in relation to improving children’s lives in a broader sense. The aim of this was to encourage better services and provision for all aspects of children’s welfare and health. It also covered making sure children had access to the services they needed including additional needs. An example is my own school where there are policies and procedures in place to ensure that all children are treated fairly and offer the opportunities they need on a personal level.
Children’s educational needs are investigated and the appropriate intervention is put in place. Am currently working with this department as part of their literacy strategy offering one to one instruction to children below the reading age expected for their chronological years. Children have been evident in the media recently because of historic abuse cases and this has raised everyone’s awareness in relation to how vulnerable hey are. There is now greater emphasis on all policies and procedures that relate to children. Race relations There has been a great deal of legislation in relation to people of a different race living in the KICK.
In my notes already have highlighted the benefits of a diverse multicultural society. People have been making their home in the UK since the sass’s when Jews arrived from Russia and Poland and people from Ireland were driven out by the potato famine. The race relations amendment act was passed in the year 2000. Its main principle is to protect racially quality and ensure that no person is discriminated against on the grounds of their race. Britain today is truly multicultural and the act ensures that it promotes good relationships between people from different ethnic backgrounds.
If a person faces discrimination because of their race the law protects them and gives redress. I have watched a number of video clips that illustrate how distressing racial discrimination can be and also how people can have stereotyped ideas and opinions. Race relations are linked to equal opportunities and the human rights act. Disability discrimination act (DAD) The DAD ensures that people with disabilities have their civil rights protected and do not face discrimination. It was passed in 1 995 and encouraged organizations and health authorities to overcome barriers and make reasonable adjustments to ensure full accessibility.
Clearly this act did not go far enough and was updated in 2005 to apply to the public sector and to promote equality of opportunity for people with disabilities and to eliminate discrimination. At this time it was also seen as necessary to include people with HIVE. It stated that public bodies must promote disability equality and reduce action plans to show how they intend to fulfill their duties and to renew the progress annually. Schools, colleges and universities were all told to make reasonable changes to their premises to make them user friendly for Britain’s students with disabilities.
In my school all doorways were fitted with ramps as well as having a lift installed. In addition, a fitted disabled bathroom was installed and money set aside for any student’s specific needs. This was particularly important for wheelchair users. Making all public buildings, apart from those with a listed status was a huge undertaking and the government catered in three years to bring this into place. It meant that all public bodies and authorities had to review their policies, practices, procedures and services to make sure they did not discriminate against anyone with a disability.
Huge advances have been made to accommodate those with disabilities culminating in the successful Paralytics. This was televised across the world and opened everyone’s eyes to how important it is to be accepted in society despite their disability. The human rights act (1998) This act covers all human rights and ensures civil rights for people enabling hem to take legal action against any person or organization, including HAS, which disrespects their human rights. This act has been used when people feel their rights have been violated.
Recently a female worker for British airways was told she could no longer wear a cross around her neck whilst at work. She felt that this violated her human rights and so took her case to the European courts where she won her case. This is just one example and there have been many particularly in relation to same sex marriages and counseling services. A homosexual couple went to relate which is an organization that helps relationships through the use of counseling.
The counselor rejected the homosexual couple and did not wish to help them so the couple took their case to the human rights where they won their case and the counselor had no right to reject them. Data protection act This act covers the way information about people is kept and used and protected and kept secure. It is necessary for every organization to hold personal data on employees but this has to be kept secure and it is extremely important in any health and social care sector. All organizations have policies ND procedures that employees have to be made aware of and they need to follow correct procedure.
In school data is held on every student and this is confidential and can only be viewed on a need to know basis and must not be passed on outside of the school environment. All confidential information has to be shredded. Nursing and residential care homes regulations This act was passed in 1984 and was amended in 2002 and applies to all nursing and residential care homes. Every residential care home has to have a license to operate which is issued by their local council. This license regulates how they practice. If the homes do not meet regulations they face prosecution and sometimes closure.
This act works closely with the care standards act that was passed in 2000. This piece of legislation covered individuals in all care settings including domiciliary. Again, standards have to be met and the individual must receive appropriate care. This act also covers fostering and family care. Every care home has to have policies and procedures in place that reflect national legislation. These are open to inspection. Age discrimination act (2006) This act was passed to make it unlawful for employers and others to criminate against a person on the basis of their age. This applies to jobs, promotion, training and employment.
Legislation is being updated and changed all the time and in particular when political parties are in control. In health and social care all professionals must stay up to date with current legislation. The legislation I have researched is used by health and social care organizations to produce policies and procedures that outline the roles, rights and responsibilities involved in the service they are working for. Legislation indicates what those using the services expect in the way of support and behavior. Most health and social care organizations and professions have a charter or code of practice and procedures that has to be followed.
I have researched the code of conduct published by the NC which outlines the standards of conduct, performance and ethics for nurses and midwives and have included this as an example of how legislation is applied. The general social care council (SIC) registers all social care workers and regulates both training and conduct. Codes of practice are needed as when services are inspected or audited they will be judged upon the level of service they are roving. Any professional role will be overseen by the SIC and staff in training will be made aware of the code of practice and charters they have to work to.
Charters inform staff and those using the service about what they can expect. The care quality commission (ICQ) regulates the standards on behalf of the government. This is often done with inspections. Every organization has to produce its own policies and procedures that respect all aspects of equality, diversity and rights in health and social care. Managers have to guide professionals in their employment to ensure they are observing reoccurred. This can be seen in all areas of HAS by looking at notice boards in the hall way, reception or staff rooms.
In addition, charters are put online where they can be viewed by the public. All staff should receive a handbook when being inducted into a new post or role and care workers should have frequent training and updating on any changes. If this is followed the individual’s rights are promoted in a positive way. There are many people who are too ill or too frail to speak for themselves or who do not know their rights. There are many vulnerable people who may not even be aware of their sights and need a person to make sure they’ve received what they are entitled too.
A trained person will speak on their behalf and this is referred to as an advocate. The advocate can be a professional worker or a friend or relative but must always realism that they are speaking on behalf of the individual and not expressing their own view. Every health and social care setting must have policies and procedures firmly in place and ensure that staff know about these by putting up notices and providing training. If this is done properly staff are sure of what they should be doing and if they fail to comply capillary action or dismissal may occur.
Staff development and training are vital if staff are to be kept up to date with changes, policies and procedures, as well as legislation and technology. Technology changes rapidly so there is a need for continual professional development. Quality of care and experience is constantly improving by being reviewed and developing equality, diversity and rights. It is important that work place or organizations keep up to date with all changes. Sometimes large organizations will appoint managers who will ensure that things are followed correctly and there is regular training for Taft.
Every organization must have a complaints procedure by law and these will be inspected when settings are audited. If Someone complains they have the right to have their complaint dealt with efficiently and investigated. They need to know the outcome of the investigation and if they are not happy take it to the independent parliamentary and health service ombudsman if they are not satisfied with the way there complaint has been dealt with. Sometimes people will make a complaint if they think they have been directly affected by an unlawful act or a decision in relation to care issues.
If they have en harmed they may receive compensation. Affirmative action sometimes called positive discrimination or action means when one individual is favoring another because of their ethnicity. Although seen as discriminatory it may be legal if it benefits the local community. For example, appointing someone who speaks a certain language because that’s what the area needs. Laws relating to anti-harassment relate to issues such as bullying, sexuality, race, ethnicity, gender, beliefs, sexual orientation, marital status or disability. It can cause stress, humiliation and depression and needs to be sorted out immediately.