Friends, Families and Travellers Advice on Inclusive Commissioning

Publication type: Guide

Author: Friends, Families and Travellers

Themes: Discrimination, Health and Social Care

Joint Strategic Needs Assessments (JSNA)

Robust and inclusive JSNAs are essential for identifying local inequalities in access to services and health outcomes. This must include an accurate assessment of the needs of Gypsy and Traveller communities. Gypsies and Travellers should be engaged in the JSNA process to enable communities to contribute their views and experiences of local services and have a say about the planning of services.

Statutory Guidance on JSNAs and JHWSs states that “boards should consider inclusive ways to involve people from different parts of the community” and “this should recognise the need to engage with parts of the community that are socially excluded and vulnerable

Romany Gypsies, Irish Travellers and Roma are all protected by the Equality Act 2010. As such public bodies have a legal obligation to include the needs of these communities in their JSNAs and show ‘due regard’ for the need to eliminate discrimination, promote equality of opportunity and foster good relations between groups. FFT peer interviewers have been used to conduct health needs assessments with Gypsy Traveller communities to inform Gypsy Traveller JSNA chapters in Kent and West Sussex.

JSNAs should seek to identify key issues in the following areas:

1. Population – what do you know about the local Gypsy Traveller population? Can you make links with Gypsy Traveller organisations? Be aware that the 2011 census statistics show a significant under-count to a ratio of 1:5 according to community estimates.

2. Wider social and economic determinants – how do education, employment, living conditions and experiences of racism impact on the health of Gypsies and Travellers?

3. Lifestyles and health promotion – how do lifestyle factors such as smoking/exercise/diet impact on the health of Gypsies and Travellers?

4. Health and wellbeing status – what health, mental health and social care needs do Gypsies and Travellers have?

5. Service Utilisation – what services do Gypsies and Travellers access? Are there gaps in service provision? Have existing services been assessed to measure their capacity to meet that need? Does the population require a different approach to local services?

For support with inclusive commissioning please contact [email protected]

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