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Convention on the Rights of Residents in Care Homes for Adults and Older People

On Friday 20 November 2015, Scottish Care, alongside residents, staff and the Cabinet Secretary for Health, Wellbeing and Sport, Shona Robison launched our Convention on the Rights of Residents in Care Homes for Adults and Older People.

Why did we create the Convention?

At Scottish Care, we strive to take a Human Rights Based Approach to our work. This means that we want to ensure that older people’s rights are promoted and embedded in health and social care policy and practice. Every person has the right to be treated with dignity, respect and without discrimination and we wanted to come up with something that would help us to ensure that this was a reality for older people across Scotland.

With over 33,000 (http://www.gov.scot/resource/0044/00444594.pdf) people over the age of 75 in residential care across the country and a large number of our members providing Care Home services, we decided this would be the right place to start. We wanted to promote that an individual’s basic human rights do not diminish when he or she moves into residential care regardless of his or her physical or mental condition.

How did we create the Convention?

We started by holding workshops with care home residents who identified what rights they believe need to be promoted and protected to ensure their time in care is empowering, dignified and fulfilling. We then put all of these rights together in a comprehensive statement, 16 Articles to be exact and called it, The Convention on the Rights of Residents in Care Homes for Adults and Older People.

After a few small changes and approval from our fantastic team of Residents, we launched the Convention for all to see at the National Care Home Conference on November 20th 2015.

It looks something like this: 

  • Article 1: Residents have the right to quality care
  • Article 2: Residents have the right to choice
  • Article 3: Residents have the right to independence

What has happened since?

Since the launch of the Convention last year, we have over 60 organisations signed up to its terms. But this is not enough, we need partners in the Scottish Government, Local Partnerships and more providers across Scotland to sign up and express not only their support of its terms but their willingness to ensure that funding, resources and supports are in place to ensure everyone living in Residential Care can exercise these fundamental rights and in doing so live life to the fullest and achieve what’s important to them.

We were also approached by the Scottish Human Rights Commission who have made a case study and short film of the process as an example of human rights in practice and perfectly aligned with the Scottish Government’s National Action Plan for Human Rights (SNAP).

You can watch the short film, made by Michael Rea, here:

Contact us

For further information about the process or for a hard copy of the Convention please contact Carlyn Miller- carlyn.miller@scottishcare.org.