Definition of Independent Living

This section defines Independent Living. It includes:

What is Independent Living?

What does Independent Living mean for older disabled people?

How does Independent Living fit in the wider policy context?

What is Independent Living?

Independent Living is about disabled people having voice, choice and control over any support they need to go about their everyday lives. Read more about the social model of disability that Independent Living is based on.

In 2008, Government published its Independent Living Strategy, which set out the following vision and outcomes framework for achieving independent living for all disabled people:

Independent Living Vision
All disabled people will have the same choice, control and freedom as every other citzen and any support is based on individuals’ own choices and aspirations
      
Greater choice and control over any assistance you need to go about your everyday life Access to housing, transport, health, social care, education, employment and other services and opportunities Participation in family, community and civic life

 

Facts and figures about Independent Living and older people.

What does Independent Living mean for older disabled people?

Independent Living can make a huge difference to older people and their families, including:

  • A wider range of options for housing and care support in later life
  • Greater awareness and take-up of personal social care budgets and direct payments amongst older disabled people.
  • Person centred support planning to enable older disabled people to have a strong voice and influence over their own support.
  • Innovative ways of enabling choice and control for older people in residential and nursing care settings and for older people with cognitive impairments, including those with dementia.
  • Opportunities for older disabled people to play a full part in family, community and civic life.

Click here to read what older people have to say about Independent Living.

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How does Independent Living fit in the wider policy context?

The promotion of voice, choice and control is a key part of the modernisation and reform of public services. Working to deliver Independent Living in your day-to-day role will help you hit national and local targets and achieve better outcomes for older people and their families.

National targets

Independent Living is key to achieving the following national Public Service Agreement (PSA) targets for 2008-2011:

  • PSA 15 - Address the disadvantage that individuals experience because of their gender, race, disability, age, sexual orientation, religion or belief
  • PSA 17 - Tackle poverty and promote greater independence and well-being in later life
  • PSA 18 - Promote better health and well-being for all
  • PSA 19 - Ensure better care for all
  • PSA 21 - Build more cohesive, empowered and active communities

Independent Living is key to achieving the following national policies and their associated targets:

Local targets

At the local level, Independent Living is key to achieving the following National Indicators (NI) for local authorities:

  • NI 3 - Civic participation in the local area
  • NI 4 - % of people who feel they can influence decisions in their locality
  • NI 124 - People with a long-term condition supported to be independent and in control of their condition
  • NI 127 - Self reported experiences of social care users
  • NI 130 - Social Care clients receiving Self Directed Support (Direct Payments and Individual Budgets)
  • NI 136 - People supported to live independently through social services (all ages)
  • NI 138 - Satisfaction of people over 65 with both home and neighbourhood
  • NI 139 - People over 65 who say that they receive the information, assistance and support needed to exercise choice and control to live independently
  • NI 140 - Fair treatment by local services
  • NI 142 - Number of vulnerable people who are supported to maintain independent living

Click here for a comprehensive list of reports, toolkits, projects and other resources related to Independent Living and older people.