Comhairle Act 2000
F9[ Personal Advocacy Service.
Inserted by Citizens Information Act 2007 (2/2007), s. 5, not commenced as of date of revision.
Modifications (not altering text):
Prospective affecting provision: section inserted by Citizens Information Act 2007 (2/2007), s. 5, not commenced as of date of revision.
F9[7A.— (1) The Chief Executive may designate such and so many members of the staff of the Board as he or she considers appropriate to be personal advocates to qualifying persons (hereinafter referred to as ‘personal advocates’) and a person so designated shall hold office as a personal advocate for such period as the Chief Executive may determine.
(2) A personal advocate shall have such qualifications, expertise and experience relevant to personal advocacy as the Board considers appropriate.
(3) A person is a qualifying person for the purposes of this Act if—
(a) he or she is not less than 18 years of age and, in the opinion of the Director—
(i) is, by reason of a disability, unable to obtain or has difficulty in obtaining a particular social service or services without the assistance or support of a personal advocate, and
(ii) there are reasonable grounds for believing that there is, in relation to the person, a risk of harm to his or her health, welfare or safety if he or she is not provided with the social service or services that he or she is seeking to obtain,
(b) he or she is under 18 years of age and—
(i) his or her sole parent or guardian is a qualifying person, or
(ii) he or she has a disability or, in relation to whom, in the opinion of the Director, there are reasonable grounds for believing that he or she has a disability, and in either case the circumstances are such that it would be unreasonable to expect a parent or guardian of the person to act on his or her behalf in obtaining a particular social service or services without the assistance or support of a personal advocate,
and, in the opinion of the Director, there are reasonable grounds for believing that there is, in relation to the person, a risk of harm to his or her health, welfare or safety if he or she is not provided with the social service or services that he or she is seeking to obtain.
(4) A person shall not cease to be a qualifying person for the purposes of this Act by reason only of the fact that he or she is in receipt of a social service or services.
(5) The Board shall have regard to the following to determine the order of priority to be accorded to different qualifying persons in the assignment of personal advocates to such persons:
(a) the needs of qualifying persons to have personal advocates assigned to them;
(b) the degrees of risk of harm to the health, welfare or safety of qualifying persons if they are not provided with the social service or services that they are seeking to obtain;
(c) the benefits likely to accrue to qualifying persons if personal advocates are assigned to them;
(d) the availability to qualifying persons of advocacy services otherwise than under this Act; and
(e) such other matters as the Board considers appropriate or as may be prescribed by regulations made by the Minister, which he or she is hereby authorised to make for that purpose.
(6) The service provided to qualifying persons under this section and sections 7B to 7F shall be known, and is in this Act referred to, as the ‘Personal Advocacy Service’.
(7) The Board may, with the approval of the Minister and the consent of the Minister for Finance, appoint a person who shall be known as the Director of the Personal Advocacy Service, and is referred to in this Act as ‘the Director’, to perform the functions conferred on the Director by this Act.
(8) Subsections (2) and (4) of section 14 shall apply to the Director in the same manner as they apply to other members of the staff of the Board.
(9) The Director shall manage and control the Personal Advocacy Service and shall be responsible to the Chief Executive for such management and control.
(10) (a) The Director shall, if the Director or a member of the staff of the Board who is authorised to perform the functions of the Director under section 7B is informed by a person (in this subsection referred to as a ‘specified person’) that he or she is of opinion in relation to another person that the second-mentioned person is a qualifying person, provide information to the person in relation to the Personal Advocacy Service and, in particular, the requirements of section 7B in respect of an application for the assignment of a personal advocate to a person.
(b) In this subsection ‘specified person’, in relation to another person, means a member of that person’s family, a carer of that person or any other person, including a member of an organisation or group, who is actively involved in promoting the health, welfare or well-being of that person.
(11) The functions of the Director under subsection (10) and section 7B may be performed by such members of the staff of the Board as the Director may authorise in that behalf.
(12) Regulations under this section may contain such incidental, supplementary and consequential provisions as appear to the Minister to be necessary or expedient for the purposes of the regulations.
(13) Every regulation under this section shall be laid before each House of the Oireachtas as soon as may be after it is made and, if a resolution annulling the regulation is passed by either such House within the next 21 days on which that House has sat after the regulation is laid before it, the regulation shall be annulled accordingly but without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done thereunder. ]