Non-Instructed Advocacy

General Information and Case Studies

Ideally, within advocacy, a person will be able to guide what they want by conveying their thoughts and ideas directly to the Advocacy Worker. However, for some people this is not possible. The reason for this can differ, but can often be down to communication, health or mental capacity issues. That said, simply by not being able to convey a view does not mean a person is without a view.

With non-instructed advocacy it is important to first of all establish what can be ascertained. To do this the advocacy worker will consider and seek guidance as to whether other forms of communication might be appropriate such as writing things down or perhaps using Talking Mats picture symbols. The worker will also where appropriate look to liaise with key people in the person’s life. Sometimes also observation can be key to understanding what the person needs, wants or feels.

By using different approaches, the Advocacy Worker can hopefully build up a picture of what that person’s life has been like and is like now. By liaising with significant individuals it may give insight in to what the person’s past wishes were.

Once the worker has built a picture they are then able use this as a backbone to the non-instructed advocacy. However, always first and foremost is what the person themselves is able to directly tell the worker. The Advocacy Worker will then use this information to ask questions about the person’s situation in order to provoke conversation which will hopefully lead to the best outcomes being reached for the person. It is not for the worker to make reports or draw conclusions due to the ‘independent’ nature of advocacy.

Non-instructed advocacy also has a safeguarding element tied to it. Under this the Advocacy Worker must always be mindful of the rights that a person may have, but that they are unable to realise. Here the Advocacy Worker will raise this to ensure someone’s rights are acknowledged. These rights come from a range of different places for example Human Rights Act and National Care Standards.

Partners in Advocacy provide non-instructed advocacy to a number of different individuals. We also adhere to the Non-Instructed Advocacy Guidelines that are produced by the Scottish Independent Advocacy Alliance.

Case Study

X was admitted to hospital having fallen in the house. In hospital X was refusing medications and often appeared to take medications, but would spit this out later. The spouse of X would visit daily. The difficulty was that X was quite agitated and this was not getting any better due to the issue with medication.

The Advocacy Worker could not ascertain a view from X other than they were quite reliant on their spouse. It was clear they had a lot of trust in their spouse. The Advocacy Worker also had seen X and their spouse together one day and X looked very happy.

A meeting was held shortly thereafter and the Advocacy Worker pointed out the good relationship between X and the spouse. The worker asked if the spouse might be part of the care planning and specifically giving the medication. The spouse was more than happy to help.

The result was X was comfortable and happy to take the medication from the spouse. X also saw the interaction between the spouse and the staff which helped them gain slightly more trust with the staff also. The agitated behaviour diminished and X was able to move out from hospital.

Contact Information

Contact us using the information below

G/1 Links House
15 Links Place
Ph: 0131 478 7723/7724

Offices 1 & 2
Strathclyde Business Centre
120 Carstairs St, Dalmarnock
Glasgow G40 4JD
Ph: 0141 847 0660

Office 18
Staffa Place
Ph: 01382 217186