The Scottish Government Independent Advocacy Guide for Commissioners (2013) reflects Commissioners' statutory responsibility under the Mental Health (Care and Treatment) (Scotland) Act 2003. It provides commissioners with an understanding of good advocacy practice and management to be considered when commissioning advocacy services. This Guidance can be used alongside the Guide for Commissioners. Material produced by the SIAA such as the SIAA Principles and Standards for Independent Advocacy, and the associated Code of Practice and the Independent Advocacy: An Evaluation Framework (2010) also provide benchmarks against which advocacy practice can be measured. These can be used in evaluation of advocacy organisations or projects.
SIAA Principles and Standards
The advocacy movement, with stakeholders, developed the SIAA Principles and Standards for Independent Advocacy (2008). Commissioners can use the Principles in the commissioning of advocacy services if they so wish and some do. The Principles, which represent the core beliefs about independent advocacy outlined within the SIAA document and reflected in the Scottish Government Guide for Commissioners (2013) are as follows:
Principle 1: Independent advocacy puts the people who use it first
Principle 2: Independent advocacy is accountable
Principle 3: Independent advocacy is as free as it can be from conflicts of interest
Principle 4: Independent advocacy is accessible
These Principles are widely accepted and are relevant and appropriate in the provision of quality independent advocacy services. They are reflected in this Guidance.
Email: Peggy Winford
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