Independent advocacy


Some people may have a lot of difficulty being involved in deciding how their care and support needs will be met. In these situations they’ll need someone appropriate who can support and represent them through the care assessment and review process.  

If you have substantial difficulty in taking part in the process and if you’ve no one else to help you, you may need the support of an independent advocate.

Advocacy is about giving you a voice to say what you want about the services you receive or want to receive. It can help you:

  • find out more about your rights and resolve issues
  • make a complaint about your service
  • with support at meetings
  • to access services you want to receive

You’ll be involved and supported with any enquiries being made about your safety and protection from abuse or neglect.

Citizens Advice Bureau Click to get info

We’ve commissioned the Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) to provide free and confidential independent advocacy to people who use care and community services in Waltham Forest. They’re independently trained specialists and work for you confidentially.

CAB can work and support you when you’re dealing with people who provide your services or with organisations such as the NHS, Housing, Environment, Care, Community or Legal.

Find out more on the Citizens Advice Waltham Forest website.


You can contact skilled and trained members of CAB at:

220 Hoe Street
London E17 3AY
Telephone: 0300 330 1175

If you lack the capacity to make specific decisions, you could receive support from an independent mental capacity advocate (IMCA) or an independent mental health advocate (IMHA).

To be eligible for an IMCA you need to:

  • lack capacity to make specific decisions for yourself, and
  • get referred by a medical professional or care manager

Read more about IMCA on VoiceAbility.

To be eligible for an IMHA you need to be:

  • detained under the Mental Health Act 1983 (excluding people detained under certain short-term sections)
  • a conditionally discharged restricted patient
  • subject to guardianship, or a community treatment order
  • considered for treatment which requires consent/second opinion

Read more about IMHA on VoiceAbility.