Hampshire Set Up Personalisation Commission

The Leader of Hampshire County Council, Councilor Ken Thornber has launched a commission of inquiry to help shape future services for people in need of support and care.

According to Hampshire County Council’s website: ‘Adult social care services must be transformed over the next three years. This transformation will include moving to a personalised adult social care system which emphasises the individual’s dignity, right to self-determination, choice, control and power over the support services they receive.

Personalisation means moving away from traditional social care where people are fitted into a limited set of available statutory services. It involves considering a person as an individual with aspirations, as well as needs, and a circle of family, friends and other resources and support mechanisms around them. It introduces the requirement for greater personal responsibility and for individuals to use their own resources, as well as those available through statutory and other services, to meet their needs in the best way possible. 

We need to take into account the challenges of demographic changes and resource constraints. We need to adopt a more collaborative approach between agencies, including the voluntary and independent sector.’

Hampshire are planning four evidence sessions over the next five months and are requesting evidence at least one month before each session. Hampshire will then select some people to give evidence in person if they wish to.

The four sessions are as follows:

April 28 – People and Carers – For this session we would like information on people’s experiences of personalisation or the lack of it in adult social care services. We would like people’s ideas on how personalisation can be achieved and how the system can be paid for. We want to hear from individuals, staff, families, carers and interested organisations.

June 12 – Partners and Funding – For this session we would like information on the implications personalisation will have for our partner organisations in Health services, Government departments, Adult Protection, the Third Sector and Voluntary Sector, and Employment. We will want to explore in depth the opportunities for new ways of funding. We also want to understand how risks may change for individuals and organisations.

July 18 – The Care Market – For this session we would like information on the effects personalisation will have on the market place. We would like to know what it will mean for all care providers running residential and nursing homes, home care, day activities and meals services. We would like information on what it means for the voluntary sector, the leisure market, health and other partners.

September 19 – The Local Authority – For this session we would like information on the implications personalisation will have for Local Authorities. We would like to hear from all aspects of Local Authority provision including housing, transport, leisure, and community safety. We want to explore the impact on culture, workforce and systems.

The Commission will be chaired by Councillor Ken Thornber with Councillor Felicity Hindson. Other notable commissioners include Peter Beresford, John Dixon from ADASS, Peter White and George Young, MP for North West Hampshire.

More information including a list of Commissioners, briefing papers, and how to submit evidence is available at http://www3.hants.gov.uk/adult-services/commission-personalisation


One thought on “Hampshire Set Up Personalisation Commission


    The recent Direct newsletter (169 March 2008) deliberately publishes the government’s press release prior to Hampshire’s call for contributions.

    There is a difference.

    Looking at Hampshire’s approach I suggest they are attempting to set the agenda and chorale the response. Whereas the government appear to me to being totally open, offering a blank canvas.

    See the following notes from Government Press Release ‘Putting People First’

    “This is the first attempt to CO-PRODUCE public service reform……

    Disabled people rightly demand to live independently as equal citizens.

    People with mental health problems have the right to a life free of stigma with the opportunities that the rest of us take for granted.

    The vast majority of people wish to remain in their own home ..

    … our [government’s] ambitions … must now match …the aspirations of service users … .

    I want to focus on a MAJOR REDISTRIBUTION OF POWER from the State to the Citizen according with the fundamental human right to self-determination

    This has the potential to be one of the most radical Public Service reforms for a generation.

    21st Century social justice with an active and empowering state, rather than one which is paternalistic and controlling.

    We must ensure that every individual …[has] access to advocacy and support

    The right to self-determination will .. sometimes mean being allowed to make poor or unconventional choices.

    NHS Funding could be included in personal budgets

    People are telling us that they want a life not a service

    Let us now move forward together and use this opportunity to transform social care by putting people first….

    DoH, 10 December 2007

    The government encourage an open, creative and constructive dialogue.

    Hampshire offer us a “Commission” who will then decide what happens.

    (Note above: ‘…paternalistic and controlling’)

    Forgive me but a ‘Commission’ is not ‘empowering’ nor is it transparent. I fear we are back to the wise and the worthy deciding for us.

    Surely the personalisation debate is our opportunity to state what it is we want, undigested, unfiltered and certainly not compromised by our local authority.

    We, disabled people in Hampshire have over 25 years of experience in personalising our services. Why do we need a Commission to define and decide for us what this is?

    I encourage you to be truly challenging in your contributions.

    Think the ‘un-thinkable’. Think outside the box. Ask yourself the BIG questions:

    Do we need social services?
    Do we need all the apparatus that is associated?

    Surely personalisation at its most basic means the individual deciding for him or herself what they need and how they want those needs met.

    There is room for the ready availability of peer advice, information and practical support. Indeed we would expect these.

    Together we can develop the basic ingredients such as a transparent means of agreeing what one’s needs were, how these were costed and paid for.

    But do we really need a Director Of Adult Care?

    Do we really need three or four Assistant Directors?

    Do we really need all those offices, officers, all that infrastructure in Winchester and elsewhere?

    Do we need politicians, accountants, legal, communications, strategy, quality and management officers deciding for us?


    I am writing to encourage you to put down your thoughts on the personalisation debate. I draw your attention to the above notes from the government press release to inspire, to prompt, to guide you as you think and write.

    In particular ponder: a MAJOR REDISTRIBUTION OF POWER from the State to the Citizen … social justice with an active and empowering state… The RIGHT to self-determination…

    What does that mean to you?

    Go to it.



    (OK I too am inclined to cynicism … ‘here we go again’ … ‘waste of time’ … ‘been there – done that’ … but I encourage you to think of the next generation and write.)

    Email your response to the Personalisation Commission team at personalisation.commission@hants.gov.uk – please title your email “Putting People First”

    Or if you are sending your evidence back by post, please send it to:

    The Personalisation Commission Team
    Adult Services
    Freepost SO2077
    SO23 8BR


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