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2nd July 2012

Carers and users to get greater say on social services policy

THE Welsh Government has announced it will create a 'citizens' panel' to give carers and service users a voice on decisions it makes on social services.

 The decision to create the panel, which will be able to make its views felt on strategic Wales-wide policy, was announced by the Deputy Minister for Children and Social Services, Gwenda Thomas, at a conference on social services in Llandudno on June 28-29.

She said: "The most important change we can make is to give users and carers a way to influence the really big decisions taken at an all-Wales level.

"In 2011 I set up a partnership forum which brings all the major stakeholders in social services together. Now the forum and I will be able to listen to the experiences and views of the most important people, the citizens who rely on these services every day."

She also told the conference that a framework will be developed to monitor whether people are receiving better services and a new standards, performance and improvement team will be introduced to encourage sharing of good practice and excellence in social services.

 Details have not yet been given about how the 'citizens' panel' will be chosen and when it will come into effect.

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