H&SA 2015 Annual Conference

Rising to the Challenge

Independent Living and People with Learning Disabilities

Manchester, 19th November 2015

This year we will be offering six exciting opportunities to attend our dynamic and innovative seminars.This page will provide a brief description of each Parallel Seminar offered during the conference, as well as present the facilitators for each session.

Each session will run twice lasting 55 minutes, each conference delegate may choose two seminars to attend.

Parallel Seminars


Seminar 1

Using the Care Act to make Independent Living a reality

The Care Act 2014 can be used to reinforce disabled people’s rights to independent living. However at the same time the closure of the Independent Living Fund and reductions in funding for local authorities is severely threatening this right in practice. Steve will outline the way in which the Care Act can be used alongside key human rights principles to ensure disabled people have choice and control over where they live.

Steve Broach

Rhianon Gale

Seminar Presentations:
Steve Broach

Steve is a barrister at Monckton Chambers. He practices across the broad spectrum of public law, advising and representing individuals, charities, companies and public authorities. He has particular interest and expertise in the health, education and social care fields, with a focus on disability and children's rights cases.

Steve has an in depth knowledge of the Care Act 2014 and related legislation, including the Mental Capacity Act 2005. He has advised and provided training for a number of public authorities and voluntary sector organisations on Care Act implementation.

Prior to coming to the Bar in 2008 Steve was a campaigner in the voluntary sector, including roles at the National Autistic Society, TreeHouse (now Ambitious about Autism) and the Every Disabled Child Matters campaign. Steve is very involved in the work on the ‘LB Bill’, put forward by the Justice for LB campaign to strengthen disabled people’s right to independent living.

Rhianon Gale

Rhianon has dedicated her career to supporting people with learning disabilities and family carers for over 15 years. She has an invisible disability herself and supports family members with mental and physical disabilities; she has a first hand understanding of the obstacles that family carers and people with disabilities can face.

As Manager of the Family Carer Support Service (FCSS), Rhianon strives to ensure family carers know what their rights are and have the confidence to exercise them. She thinks it is essential to keep up to date with the real issues that people experience and makes sure the FCSS work responds to current health and social care trends/issues.

Rhianon and her team design and deliver workshops on topics affecting family carers (e.g. Care Act, Mental Capacity Act) create resources and guides (e.g. Holiday Information Guide, Making sure your relative is safe), give phone support to family carers to help them navigate through health and social care systems and collate views of family carers to respond to government consultations.

S1 The Care Act SB.pdf  / S1The Care Act RG.pdf

Seminar 2

Flexible and Outcome Based Commissioning

This seminar will present a Theoretical Overview and Practice-based Examples through an introductory overview to Outcome Based Commissioning and some of the challenges/culture changes it brings for commissioners. We will include an operational view from a provider on how this works in practice.

Fred Grand

Steve Bernard

Seminar Presentation:
Fred Grand

I’m currently working as a Commissioning Policy & Planning Officer at Durham County Council, with lead responsibility for the development of supported housing services. The main focus of my work is services for people with Learning Disabilities, and I’ve recently developed new accommodation-based services for people with Sensory Loss and long-term Mental Health conditions.

Project work includes service re-modelling (including de-registration of Residential Care), commissioning new services (including our innovative ‘Concierge Plus’ model), and occasional decommissioning of services. More recently I’ve been involved in developing an Outcome Based Commissioning within the authority, piloting the approach at a Mental Health recovery service and attending a series of masterclasses on the subject hosted by the New Economics Foundation (nef).

Steve Barnard

Strategic Director of Innovation, Hft Steve started work with Hft in 1992 as a Regional Director. He has a background working as a practitioner, manager and director supporting people with learning and physical disabilities. Now the Strategic Director of Innovation, Steve has taken the lead on Hft’s work with Personalised Technology (PT), leading the PT team, forming strategic partnerships and raising awareness of the ways PT can help to improve independence and safety in the lives of people with learning disabilities.

His work on PT was stimulated by the ESF funded Through Assisted Technology to Employment (TATE) project. This project focused on how technology can support people with intellectual disabilities into employment. Since then, Steve has focussed his efforts on trying to help people become employable to include; managing personal care, improving independence, communication and mobility.

Steve has been instrumental in the development of Hft’s Smart House and is currently looking at how PT can be used to improve the health and wellbeing in people with learning disabilities and other vulnerable groups.  Steve has been involved in major national and European projects and is currently engaged in two funded projects for the Health Foundation and Innovate UK.

S2 Outcomes FG.pdf

Seminar 3
Housing Brokerage

This seminar will focus on housing brokerage. Housing Brokerage encompasses a range of activities and has the aim of enabling people with disabilities, including people with more complex needs, and their families to understand the range of housing options available to them and then secure the housing solution that meets their current and future needs. The seminar will look at each organisations experience of providing housing brokerage services over the past three years and what we have learnt and are learning from this work.

Ben Harrison

Dimensions team

Seminar Presentation:
 Ben Harrison

I have worked in the not for profit sector for 25 years, in both a paid and voluntary capacity, and have held roles with a number of agencies, including United Response, Mind, The Carr Gomm Society, Contour Homes, NACRO and others

In this time I have worked directly with people who use services, developed and managed support services, undertaken strategy and business development roles and am currently responsible for the management and delivery of United Response’s housing activities.

I am an experienced trainer and facilitator and one of the co-authors of the original Progress for Providers self assessment tool and its follow up, Progress for Providers: Checking your progress in using person centred approach

The Dimension's Housing Brokerage Team

Diane Young, Housing Brokerage Manager. Diane manages the team which consist of four Housing brokers and a project worker.
Susan Hedley, Housing Broker
Tristan Wood , Housing Broker
Elizabeth Rieber, Housing Broker
Victoria Spooner, Housing Broker
Tara Ince, Project Worker

We have all been working closely together as a team to deliver the Essex Housing Brokerage Service and all have different backgrounds ranging from Housing, Supported Housing, Learning Disabilities, Floating Support, Young People, Mental Health and delivering outreach services.

S3 Brokerage DY.pdf


Seminar 4

 Good stuff that does not cost a lot

The workshop will take the form of an accessible and engaging presentation where we share stories of good stuff that doesn’t cost much. Providers will share stories of the imaginative things they are doing to support people to get the help they need to live the life they want to live


Angela Catley

Thomas Doukas

Seminar Presentation:
 Angela Catley

Angela is the Director of Development at Community Catalysts CIC, one of a small group of energetic people who believe passionately in the power of people and community to effect social change. Community Catalysts wants people who need care or support to live their lives to be able to get that support in ways, times and places that suit them – a real choice of attractive and sometimes quirky, local options. They help local people use their gifts, talents and imagination to help other people in their community and to set up sustainable community enterprises and ventures that have a health or care focus.  Before helping to establish Community Catalysts, Angela  had an extensive history of work in care and support services, staff development and project management. Her work has resulted in a number of important publications of national significance.

Thomas Doukas

Thomas is the Involvement Team Leader of Choice Support. He has worked with people with learning disabilities for over 12 years focusing on active involvement and communication systems.

The Involvement Team supports people with learning disabilities to develop and deliver a range of training and information sessions delivered to other disabled people or their supporters. Other work includes supporting people to develop accessible information, implement the Reach Standards across the organisation, set up local and regional forums, design the annual satisfaction survey, amongst others. The team also provides a variety of consultancy and training solutions ranging from person centred thinking tools, support planning, speaking up, community mapping, sexuality, communication, peer tutoring, quality assurance, to mention but a few.

S4 Good Stuff AC.pdf / click here for film

Seminar 5

Social Investment and Independent living

This seminar will examine what social investing and its very wide spectrum of risks and returns means. We will examine the implications for organisations thinking of pursuing social investment and the steps they might need to take.

Mark McGoogan

Steve Harris

Seminar Presentation:
Mark McGoogan

Principal Housing Disability & Social Investment Consultants Ltd
An independent consultant & Chartered Surveyor with over 20 years experience successfully navigating the housing systems in the public, private and independent sectors.

A former bank loan underwriter, Mark led the UK’s first social investment by a national charity in 2003. More recently Mark supported Alastair Graham who led Golden Lane Housing’s two subsequent successful social investments.

Steve Harris

Steve has worked as a provider of care and support services for disabled people in the voluntary and statutory sectors. Steve has experience of strategic Joint Commissioning across Adult Social Care, Health and Housing, and has facilitated bespoke individual housing and support solutions in partnership with individuals, families, commissioners and advocates

S5 Investment MM - SH.pdf

Seminar 6

Driving Up Quality Code

Just over 2 years old has over 300 organsitions and local authorities signed up. Over this time signed up organisations have been taking responsibility for making the services they provide better. The starting point for this is the code’s self-assessment process which encourages people to come together, take a deep breath and spend some time reflecting on how they work. Providers have been working hard to develop their own bespoke self-assessments process with people they support and families. They have come together with senior managers, support staff , housing providers, commissioners, finance and human resource teams,  to listen to each other, recognise the good things, acknowledge the bad and find new ways to drive up the quality of what they do.


This workshop is an opportunity to hear more about the different ways organisations have approached their self-assessments, the improvements it has made for individuals and their lives as well as the links to the new Statutory Duty of Candour and Fit and Proper Persons Regulations.  It is an opportunity to listen, learn and share stories of what makes good support.

Sarah Maguire

Peter Kinsey

Kirsty Peachey

Natasha Corcoran


Seminar Presentation:
 Sarah Maguire

Sarah has worked with people with learning disabilities for almost 30 years. Her work began supported people with challenging needs to move out of long stay institutions in the 1980’s. Sarah has worked as a training manager where she pioneered new initiatives to take training into the work place. Following completion of her MA in Applied Psychology of Learning Disability Services, Sarah worked as an Operations Director of a large national learning disability charity developing direct payments and supported living services for adults with learning disabilities.

Sarah currently works as the Director of Quality and Safeguarding for Choice Support where she continues to support people to take control of their lives. Sarah is part of the steering committee for the Driving up Quality Alliance and is a founder member of the Association of Quality Checkers which will launch in later this year.

Peter Kinsey

Peter Kinsey has had nearly 30 years of experience working in the health and social care sector with both people with learning disabilities and people with mental health problems.  He joined Care Management Group in 2007 and led the successful turnaround of the organisation which now has the best quality ratings of any national learning disability provider.  Peter has actively promoted best practice within CMG and across the learning disability sector, including playing a key role in development of the Driving Up Quality Code.

Prior to that Peter worked as an Independent Consultant and has also had extensive experience as a Director in the NHS managing both mental health and learning disability services.  Peter has also worked as a Strategic Commissioning Manager within a Social Services Department and began his career in the voluntary sector.  Peter has a Masters Degree in Business Administration and an MA in the Management of Mental Health and Learning Disability Services from the Tizard Centre at the University of Kent.

Kirsty Peachey

MacIntyre is a national charity supporting person centred solutions for adults and children with a learning disability.

I have been working with adults with learning disabilities for 22 years and I hold the position of Head of Operations for adult services in the south of the country. I have overall responsibility for managing and meeting the agreed targets including H&S, achieving compliance with CQC, finance, ensuring all company policies and procedures are embedded in the services, staff management and deployment, discipline, service development planning, maintaining and developing external relationships and developing quality outcomes for people through person centred support.

Natasha Corcoran

I have a background in housing, care and support and have held a variety of paid and voluntary roles over the past 14 years, including posts with United Response, Home Group, The Regard Partnership, Gravesend Churches Housing Association and Medway Psychological Therapy Services.


During my career I have worked face to face with people with a range of support needs including adults with learning disabilities, people at risk of homelessness, adult offenders and others. I have written policies and procedures, designed and delivered staff training programmes, created tools for quality monitoring and service improvement and developed approaches to user involvement. I am currently responsible for the management and growth of United Response’s housing services across southern England.

I am interested in finding innovative ways of providing a greater range of housing choices for people with disabilities. I particularly enjoy opportunities to work in partnership with people and organisations, creating bespoke housing and support solutions which are driven by the needs of individuals and local communities.

S6 Driving up quality.pdf
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Learning Disability England
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