Accountability and the implementation of self-directed support : complaints, redress and human rights principles

Gittens, Charmaine and Gallagher, Clare and Harper, Saskia and Walavalkar, Sayali and Okungbowa, Ifueko Joy and Walker, Jamie and Jack, Douglas and Webster, Elaine (2021) Accountability and the implementation of self-directed support : complaints, redress and human rights principles. In Control Scotland, Glasgow. (

[thumbnail of Gittens-etal-ICS-2021-Accountability-and-the-implementation-of-self-directed-support-complaints-redress]
Text. Filename: Gittens_etal_ICS_2021_Accountability_and_the_implementation_of_self_directed_support_complaints_redress.pdf
Final Published Version

Download (437kB)| Preview


The Centre for the Study of Human Rights Law, working with Strathclyde Law School postgraduate students and student members of the University of Strathclyde Law Clinic, partnered with In Control Scotland in order to undertake research pertaining to the implementation of self-directed support (SDS). SDS gives individuals who are eligible for social care choice and control over the delivery of their care. It places the human rights of the individual at its heart [1], and in doing so reflects the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities 2006. The project aimed to support efforts by In Control Scotland to monitor the implementation of self-directed support. The research was motivated by an apparent lack of legal challenges relating to self-directed support since the introduction of the Social Care (Self-Directed Support) (Scotland) Act 2013 [2]. Its primary aim was to fill a gap in knowledge regarding the frequency and outcome of complaints made to certain local authorities in the Scottish central belt, by identifying any barriers to accessing complaints processes, and to uncover why such barriers may exist. Over the course of our research, we conducted 15 interviews. We were unable to conduct in-person interviews as originally planned as a result of the COVID- 19 pandemic. Interviews were conducted through a mixture of Zoom video calls and written responses. Interviewees included staff from law centres, advocacy organisations and advice agencies. Some of our interviewees had personal experience of claiming SDS and of complaints procedures.


Gittens, Charmaine, Gallagher, Clare, Harper, Saskia, Walavalkar, Sayali, Okungbowa, Ifueko Joy, Walker, Jamie, Jack, Douglas and Webster, Elaine ORCID logoORCID:;