4. The Scottish Independent Advocacy Alliance
4.1 The Scottish Independent Advocacy Alliance ( SIAA) is a membership organisation, which promotes, supports and defends independent advocacy in Scotland. It has the overall aim of ensuring that independent advocacy is available to any person in Scotland. The SIAA provides information and support, gathers and distributes information, represents advocacy organisations at various levels and raises awareness and understanding of independent advocacy across Scotland. The SIAA works to influence legislation, policy and practice in relation to independent advocacy.
4.3 This SIAA material includes the SIAA Principles and Standards for Independent Advocacy (2008) developed by the advocacy movement in consultation with other stakeholders over many years and aspired to by the SIAA member organisations. These Principles and Standards were referenced in the previous version of the SIAA Guide to Commissioners issued in 2010 and it is open to Commissioners to use them in the commissioning of advocacy services if they wish and some do. The Principles, which represent the core beliefs about independent advocacy and outlined within the SIAA document 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
4.4 These Principles have been widely accepted and are supported as relevant and appropriate in the provision of quality independent advocacy services and have been adopted in this Guide. However, the standards detailed within SIAA Principle 3 do not strictly reflect Commissioners' statutory responsibilities under the Mental Health (Care & Treatment) (Scotland) Act 2003 and this has caused some confusion. The Standards associated with Principle 3 set out in Section 6 and Appendix 1 of this guidance therefore reflect the provisions within the Mental Health (Care & Treatment) (Scotland) Act 2003 and it's supporting Code of Practice detailed in Section 6.
Email: Sandra Falconer, email@example.com
Phone: 0300 244 4000 – Central Enquiry Unit
The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House