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Disability, Policy and Professional Practice

Disability, Policy and Professional Practice

160 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd

This is the first book on working with disabled people to take an aspirational, outcomes-focused approach to professional practice. It forms the first attempt to grapple with the massive legislative and policy shifts in the disability field in the last 15 years and provides an up-to-date, positive approach to professional practice, based on the social model of disability. Disability, Policy and Professional Practice translates both adult and childrens' disability legislation and policy guidance into positive, creative, enabling practice methods for professionals in social care, health, employment and independent living.

The book takes a practical approach that challenges professionals to confront key issues in disability studies, policy and practice. The key topics covered are:

• The Historical Legacy, Legislation, Policy and Guidance

• Community Care and Beyond

• Pivotal Moments in the development of disability policy

• Independent Living, Choices and Rights

• Life course Issues

• Valuing Diversity

• Key Challenges for an aspiring social model practitioner

This book is an indispensable resource for all professionals and students working with disabled people.

The Historical Legacy, Legislation, Policy and Guidance

The Roots of Policy, Legislation and Protection

The Poor Law Origins of Health and Social Care


Community Care and Beyond

Community Care Legislation



Pivotal Moments in the development of disability policy

The Social Model of Disability

'Mainstreaming' Controversies and Critique

Balancing Greater Individual Choice with Resource Equity

The Lessons of History and new Demands in Practice

Positive Practice

Advocacy, Facilitation and Empowerment

The Implications of Equality 2025 and the Growth of Centres of Inclusive Living


Independent Living, Choices and Rights

Enabling Practice in the 21st Century

Working Futures: Work Options and Economic Wellbeing for Disabled people

Direct Payments and In Control: Blazing a Trail for Personalised Social Care

Personalisation and Self Directed Support

Independence, Well-Being and Choice and Beyond

In Control

Individual Budgets


Life course Issues

Every Child Matters: Towards Seamless Child Services

Every Disabled Child Matters

Disabled Children's Wheelchair Services: Some Distance Still to Travel

Transition from Children's to Adult Services

Working with Older Disabled People

Adult Social Care and Older People: Practice Issues

Home-Based Living Options for Disabled People

Practice points with Assistive Technologies

The Family Context: Informal Carers' Issues; Balancing the Rights of Disabled People with Those of Carers


Valuing Diversity

Mental Health

Learning Disabled Service Users

Gender and Disability

Ethnicity and Disability

Sexuality, Sexual Identity and Parenting


Key Challenges for an Aspiring Social Model Practitioner

The Challenge of User Control and Choice; How Should a Social Model Practitioner Act?

Managing the Managers: Budgetary Constraints and Street Level Bureaucracy: Dealing with a Disempowering System

Mental Capacity and Power of Attorney: How Can the Duty of Care be Balanced with Social Model Practice?

Practice Guidance Summarised

Working with Colleagues in User-Led Organizations

Users, Carers and Wider Service Providers: Seeing Disabled People in Context: The Central Place of the Disabled Person

Relating the Legislation and Policy to the Practice Environment: How Can Professionals Develop 'Real Reflexivity' in Working with Disabled People?



I warmly welcome this book and am looking forward to recommending it to students. Harris and Roulstone provide a detailed grounding of the policy and practice terrain alongside a focused consideration of key issues relating to disability.
Hannah Morgan
Lecturer in Disability Studies, Lancaster University

Disability, Policy and Professional Practice is a valuable addition to the field. It is accessible, readable and practically useful for students.
Toby Brandon, Senior Lecturer
Northumbria University

The information provided by this book is not necessary for the course. However, is great for learning wishing to enter the health profession wanting to futher their knowledge

Miss Amy Capper
access, Warrington Collegiate
July 3, 2014

It's very interesting especially beacuse of its linking the three in the title mentioned subjects but for my purpose in Germany it's too stringly connected to the English situation.

Professor Dieter Kulke
Fakultät Angewandte Sozialwissenschaften, Fachhochschule Würzburg-Schweinfurt
June 14, 2013

Clear and informative - this enabses students to grasp the concepts and relate policy to practice.

Mrs Julie Clarkson
Early Years, Craven College
January 30, 2013

A very interesting book which I will be adding to the course bibliography of recommended reading. Provides a useful overview of a range of issues.

Dr Bronagh Byrne
Sch of Sociology,Soc Policy & Soc Work, Queen's University Belfast
December 12, 2012

A good addition to the literature focusing on disability policy and practice

Mr Snaefridur Egilson
Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Akureyri
December 11, 2012

Very useful text for pre-registration nursing students.

Ms Catherine Bernal
Social Work & Mental Health, Canterbury Christ Church University
September 6, 2012

The authors have provided essential background to some of the issues surrounding ‘disability’. With a particular focus on policy, this book makes good reading for students not only in disability studies, sociology and social policy but also enables practitioners to think more critically about the services they deliver.

Dr Martin Partridge
Faculty of Health , Staffordshire University
July 30, 2012

A very comprehensive book providing good historical, legislative and value based knowledge for SW students. Very useful book for recommended reading giving great base for further study.

November 26, 2011

An excellent and concise format which not only provides the historical background for current legislation, but also provides an insight into the political drivers. Tackling the areas of minorities, diversity, and the less talked about groups of individuals affected by a disabiliy is refreshing and insightful. Of particular strength is the approach to considering disabilities throughout the life course, and examining the issues around older age. However, for those learners who prefer more visual ways of learning, the focus on providing information through long passages of text could be daunting.

Mrs Judith Bell
Department of Social Work, Oxford Brookes University
August 11, 2011

Sample Materials & Chapters


Jennifer L. Harris

Alan Roulstone

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