Professional Zone

Disability issues

“My advocate helped tell Social Services what I really wanted.”

Paddy was 15 years old when he was referred to Coram Voice.

‘Disabled children are more likely to become looked after in the care system and are generally more vulnerable to abuse and neglect, both at home and in care*. For all these reasons, it is even more crucial that disabled children and young people have access to independent advocacy, which helps safeguard the rights and well-being of disabled children, at home or in care’ (Sherwood, 2004)

Coram Voice believes that children and young people with a disability should have equal access to our advocacy service to that of children and young people without a disability. As with all our advocacy services, the Coram Voice advocacy service for children with disabilities is designed to empower young people and protect their rights.
Coram Voice ensures that the service is accessible to children with a wide range of abilities by:

  • Allowing sufficient time to ascertain wishes and feelings
  • Being mindful of disability needs when devising information about the service
  • Ensuring our referral process is flexible enough to accommodate all young people, including those with profound learning disabilities and those who cannot communicate verbally. If you know a disabled young person who needs advocacy support, but is not able to contact us due to a disability, please phone our helpline so that we can discuss alternative ways of offering a service.

Coram Voice provides Non Instructed Advocacy (NIA) for children and young people who lack the capacity to instruct an advocate and communicate their views (be it with verbal instruction, Makaton or the use of PECS etc).

* Marchant and Page, 1993; Morris, 1995; Russell, 1995

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Voice postcard in Widgit communication symbols