Have your say on advocacy services in North Yorkshire.

We would like to talk to people who are interested in advocacy services in North Yorkshire. This particularly includes people who have used these services and any health and social care staff who have experience of working with advocacy services.

We would like to understand people’s experiences with advocacy services, what they think about current services in North Yorkshire, and what people would like future services to look like.


The contract for the existing adults’ advocacy service will end on 31 March 2022. The Service Development Team in Health and Adult Services is leading on the review of the current service and the development of a new service. This will start on 1st April 2022.

While a lot of what the service does is determined by national legislation, we want to involve people who have been supported by or worked with advocacy services in designing the new service as much as possible.

We are therefore inviting anyone with an interest in advocacy services to speak to us about their views and experiences. The engagement will run until Monday 16 August.

What is advocacy?

Advocacy is when someone supports you to speak up, or speaks up on your behalf, to ensure you are involved in decisions made about you. Some people have a legal right to an advocate.

Find further information about advocacy and the support available in North Yorkshire. You can also call us on 01609 780780.

Further information on the different types of advocacy and what the current service does is available below.

What is changing?

The current contract for an independent advocacy service for adults in North Yorkshire is ending on 31 March 2022. This is a statutory service, meaning that the council has to make sure a new service is in place from 1 April 2022.

There are no plans to fundamentally change what the service does. We are reviewing the service and talking to people to make sure that the new service reflects what is important to people when they are being supported by an advocate, and that they can access the support they need in the way which best suits them.

We are also waiting for more information about Liberty Protection Safeguards and the Mental Health Act review. The Liberty Protection Safeguards will replace the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards, and are due to come into force from April 2022.

We will make sure the new service includes any changes brought in by the Liberty Protection Safeguards and the government’s review into the Mental Health Act.

How people can get involved

There are several different ways people can tell us what they think. These include:

  • Completing a short online survey. Please contact the team using the details below to request any alternative formats.
  • Arranging a phone or video call with a member of the Service Development team.
  • If you work in Health and Social Care, arranging for someone from Service Development to attend an upcoming meeting to discuss the engagement and advocacy services
  • Downloading an easy read copy of  the engagement brief (pdf / 1 MB) and completing this with or on behalf of someone you know.

If you would like to speak to someone about any of the above options, please email us at HASservicedevelopment@northyorks.gov.uk or call us on 01609 780780. You can also submit feedback via the Service Development email address.

What does the current service do?

The current adults’ advocacy service is provided by Cloverleaf Advocacy. They provide several different types of advocacy which are explained in the table below.

Type of advocacy

What it means

Care Act Advocacy

The Council needs to involve people in decisions about their care and support needs. This means that if someone has substantial difficulty being involved in a social care process such as an assessment, review of their care and support or a safeguarding process, the Council must provide an advocate if they do not have someone else who can help them.

Non-Statutory Advocacy

People are eligible for non-statutory advocacy in North Yorkshire if they have substantial difficulty being involved in a social care process which is not related to those covered by the Care Act processes.

For example, this could be about access to services, housing or a complaint.

Independent Mental Capacity Advocacy

The Council and NHS organisations must refer someone for an Independent Mental Capacity Advocate if they do not have capacity to make specific decisions and there is no-one who can be consulted about those decisions on their behalf.

This could be about serious medical treatment, a review of their care or where they live.

Independent Mental Health Advocacy

Independent Mental Health Advocates are specially trained to support people with decisions about mental health care and treatment. Hospital and medical staff must make sure that people know about their right to an advocate and make a referral if someone wants or needs an Independent Mental Health Advocate.

Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) Relevant Persons Representative (RPR)

If someone’s care is authorised following a Deprivation of Liberty assessment, a representative must be appointed to make sure that the rights of the person being deprived of their liberty are protected.

This can be a friend or family member and is known as a Relevant Person’s Representative (RPR). Anyone who is deprived of their liberty must have an RPR, so if the person’s friends and family cannot do this then an RPR from Cloverleaf is appointed.

In addition to the adults’ advocacy service delivered by Cloverleaf, there are other advocacy services covering North Yorkshire which also come to an end in March next year.

These include the children and young people’s advocacy service delivered by National Youth Advocacy Service and the NHS complaints service delivered by Cloverleaf Advocacy.

This engagement is only looking at the adults’ independent advocacy service. If you would like to submit feedback about the children’s, please email rachel.miller@northyorks.gov.uk ,or to submit feedback about NHS complaints services, please email daniel.harry@northyorks.gov.uk

What happens next?

We are talking to people about advocacy from June until the end of July. We will then make sure we have read through and recorded everything people have told us.

We will be writing a new service specification in August, and we will use what people have said to make sure the new service reflects what is important to people, how they want to be supported and how they want to access that support.

A summary of the feedback we receive will be published on this webpage. If you would like to be notified when this is available or request a copy in a different format, please contact the Service Development team.

Where can I find more information?

Find further information about advocacy and the support available in North Yorkshire. You can also call us on 01609 780780.