Core & Essential Service Standards for people with profound and multiple learning disabilities launched in November 2017.

Professor Jim Mansell’s 2010 report, Raising Our Sights, highlighted issues we had long been working to address.


Download Core & Essential Service Standards-PMLD

Supporting People with Profound and Multiple Learning Disabilities – Core and Essential Service Standards launched at a national conference in November 2017, with the ambition that the Standards will be adopted nationally. PMLD care and support specialists who led the work included Annie Fergusson, Senior Lecturer at the University of Northampton and Joanna Grace, founder of The Sensory Project. Parity for Disability participated in the development of the Standards.

The aims of the Standards are to support in ensuring people with profound and multiple learning disabilities, children and adults, have access to consistent high-quality support throughout their lives, when supported by any service provider.

The Standards outline key objectives and principles intended to be evident across all education, health, and social care services. Commissioners and providers of services need to adopt the Standards, ensuring families and other key stakeholders have awareness of them.

Download Raising Our Sights.

Raising Our Sights is a milestone report examining services for adults with profound intellectual and multiple disabilities in the UK.

Undertaken by Professor Jim Mansell of the Tizard Centre, University of Kent, it was submitted to the government in 2010.

Parity for Disability welcomed the publication of this report which highlighted issues that Parity had been championing locally for more than 20 years. In particular, the importance of:

  • an individualised and person-centred service;

  • a family-focused approach to commissioning services;

  • funding for continued specialist advocacy;

  • more effective transition arrangements so that appropriate services are provided as people move into adulthood;

  • up-to-date information about the number, needs and circumstances of people with profound intellectual and multiple disabilities to enable effective planning of services;

  • sufficient staff trained in person-centred approaches to communication and support;

  • assistive technology that gives people with profound and multiple disabilities the opportunity to communicate, and the ability to indicate a preference or control an event.

In addition, Mansell addresses inequality of access to appropriate healthcare, pointing out specific health problems where services for adults often do not recognise and intervene effectively. He identifies inadequate wheelchair services as a major source of difficulty, and the potential of communication aids is only beginning to be appreciated in adult services.