The Joint Committee on Human Rights has written (by letter dated 26 May 2023) to the Minister of State for Social Care to express its view that the “delay [to implementation] is deeply concerning, given the serious problems with the DoLS system that we reported on last year,” and identifying how “if anything, the problems with DoLS appear to be getting worse.” The Committee finishes its letter with four questions for the Minister to answer by 14 June:
1. Does the Government still believe that the system of DoLS is in need of reform? If so, given the delay in the implementation of the LPS, are any reforms of the system currently planned in the interim?
2. What steps are being taken to address the delays to the processing and completion of DoLS applications, with the aim of ensuring that no one is unlawfully deprived of their liberty in a care setting?
3. Will the availability of non-means-tested legal aid be extended to include those who may be subject to deprivation of liberty in care settings without an authorisation in place?
4. What steps are being taken to ensure that those involved in making DoLS decisions receive adequate human rights training, and fully understand the operation of DoLS?
For more on the implications of the decision to delay implementation, see here.