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Assisted decision making

The Decision Support Service (DSS) has launched a new website www.decisionsupportservice.ie, which it says is an important step towards establishing a new human-rights based framework for people with capacity issues.

The DSS was established by the Assisted Decision-Making (Capacity) Act 2015. Although fully enacted, this Act is not yet commenced and cross-sectoral preparatory work is ongoing. The 2015 Act abolishes the current wards of court system and replaces it with a modern, person-centred framework to maximise autonomy for people who require support to make decisions about their personal welfare, property and financial affairs. The Act reflects the principles and values of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. It is estimated that 220,000 adults in Ireland could benefit from these reforms.

The Director of the DSS, Ms. Áine Flynn, is required to promote awareness and confidence and to be the authoritative source of information concerning the 2015 Act.

While the DSS itself will likely not be operational until at least 2022, the website will provide up-to-date information to the public about the ongoing implementation of the new service, while also informing relevant bodies of the steps they need to take.