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The Children's Disability Network

One of the most important challenges for Dudley Children’s services is to plan the right services and support for children with disabilities or long-term complex health needs and their families for now and in the future.

To achieve this everyone involved in the planning and delivery of services need to know as much as possible about the current and future needs of these children. One of the methods used to do this is from information held with the Children’s Disability Network.

The Network is a database of children and young people with a disability or complex health need, who live in the borough. It is also a legal requirement (Children Act 1989 [Sch.2.Para.2(1)] for Dudley to keep and maintain a record of children living in the borough who have a moderate to severe disability or long-term complex health condition. Information held will include: age, gender; an outline of their disability; services currently used and details of personal help they may require.

To ensure we have a complete picture of the needs of children and young people who have a disability or complex health need we need to know about children and young people from birth to their 18th birthday who meet the following criteria;

‘A child or young person who has a physical, sensory or learning impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse affect on his or her ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities’

This may include:

  • difficulties with seeing or hearing

  • a physical disability

  • a learning disability

  • difficulties with language or communication

  • long-term complex health condition, requiring specialist treatment such as dialysis or technology dependant

All the information is covered by the Data Protection Act 1998 and personal information remains confidential. Any information shared will be converted to anonymous statistical data. Names or addresses will not be given without consent.

Benefits to becoming a member of the Network

  • an opportunity to have your say (if you wish) on changes to services through consultation meetings, surveys and other activities.

  • a regular newsletter and email bulletins which will keep you updated on issues locally and nationally and provide information on local services and support groups.

  • entitlement to apply for the carers emergency contact card.

  • members of the Network can also access a free family day pass to Dudley Zoo.

  • parents may also be entitled to apply for a carers direct payment from the local authority to help support carers to have a break away from the caring role.

Please note that membership to the Network does not give an automatic entitlement to support services from the Children's Disability Team but it will provide you information about short breaks, which your child may be entitled to.

If you would like to join the Network you will need to complete and return a simple application form to the Network Coordinator. (Contact the Network Coordinator if you require assistance to complete the application form)

Once we have received the completed form we will send you a letter confirming membership to the Network. Each year we will send you a copy of the information held so that you can check the information is up-to-date and correct. We will keep you updated about activities, services and facilities available in the Dudley borough.

If you are uncertain whether your child would meet the criteria for the Network please contact the Network Co-ordinator