A nationwide ‘Day of Dignity’ aimed at ensuring people who receive care get the respect to which they are entitled is being given the enthusiastic support of North Yorkshire County Council.
Events being held around the county to mark the Day – 1 February, 2012 – include library displays, entertainment in residential homes, and the creation of a “dignity garden”.
Dignity Action Day is designed to raise awareness of the Dignity in Care campaign, launched in 2006 with the object of changing the culture of care services and placing a greater emphasis on improving the quality of care and the experience of people who use community services, care homes, home care, and all the other services offered by local authorities and the NHS to help people in need of care and support.
County Councillor Clare Wood, Executive Member for Adult Social Care Services:
Dignity Action Day in North Yorkshire will be marked enthusiastically with a number of events across the county.
They will be a mix of entertainment and information – but whatever they are, their fundamental message will be the same: all adults should be able to live free from fear and harm, and have their rights and choices respected.
In North Yorkshire, we operate a zero tolerance to all forms of abuse. Our view is that doing nothing is not an option – and whenever abuse is suspected, we immediately take action. That is coupled with the philosophy behind the Dignity in Care campaign – to ensure people in care are treated as individuals, and are given choice, control and a sense of purpose in their daily lives.
The theme of this year’s Dignity Action Day is “Taking the time to …”, and the idea is that people will fill in the missing words by making pledges to help ensure dignity and respect. Suggestions include making a dignity pledge (which could be as simple as a pledge to help older neighbours in cold weather) or signing up to be a Dignity Champion.
Supporters of Dignity Action Day include Sir Michael Parkinson, the Yorkshire-born journalist and television celebrity.
Sir Michael Parkinson said:
It might well be that the difference people make individually is a mere ripple on the surface of our care system, but each of those ripples added together create a wave, a social movement, and if this makes life better for some – then it has to be worthwhile.
Dignity Action Day asks health and social care workers to take action in their place of work to promote dignity. It also asks members of the public to do what they can to take action on this day to promote dignity for people in their communities.