Social Care Standards Authority (SCSA)
The Social Care Standards Authority, as established by the Social Care Standards Authority Act, Chapter 582 of the Laws of Malta, seeks to promote and establish the regulation of social welfare services, provided by agencies or public or private entities or any other entity or person. The Social Care Standards Authority is for all intents and purposes the designated Malta Central Authority to perform the functions of Central Authority under the Hague 1993 Adoption Convention. This is in accordance with Subsidiary Legislation 495.03 (Legal Notice 191 of 2018) entitled ‘Designation of Central Authority in Adoption Regulations.
Main policies and objectives in accordance with Article 4 of the Act:
- In accordance with the provisions of the Act, the Government shall determine Malta’s policies and objectives in the regulation of social welfare services provided by public or private agencies or entities or any other entity or person.
- The Government shall endeavour, through the Authority, to, inter alia, achieve the following:
(a) establish regulatory standards for social welfare services;
(b) assist the service providers to achieve a higher quality of service;
(c) enforce the standards and conditions set in the licences granted by the authority to service providers.
Establishment and Functions of the Social Care Standards Authority in accordance with Article 5 of the Act:
- The Social Care Standards Authority’s function is to set regulatory standards in relation to social welfare services and to ensure that such standards are duly complied with, in accordance with the provisions of this Act.
- The Authority shall be a body corporate having a distinct legal personality.
- The Authority shall be composed of the Chairperson and the Board established under article 9 of Chapter 582 of the Laws of Malta.
Functions of the Authority in accordance with Article 6 of the Act:
- Without prejudice to any other functions, which may be assigned to it by this Act, or by any other law or regulations, the functions of the Authority shall include:
(a) to establish regulatory standards, policies and guidelines for social welfare services and to enforce such standards as may be necessary to ensure a quality level of social welfare services;
(b) to establish criteria for the granting, refusal, suspension or revocation of licences; and
(c) to grant, refuse, suspend or revoke any licence.
- Notwithstanding any other law, where any function or power of the Authority is performed or exercised through an agent as provided in article 12(2), all judicial actions, acts and proceedings arising from or relating to any matter in respect of which an agent acts for and on behalf of the Authority shall be taken or be made by or against such agent in the name of the Authority.
Conduct of the affairs of the Authority in accordance with Article 8 of the Act:
- The affairs, business and the carrying out of the functions of the Authority shall be the responsibility of the Board: Provided that the Board may delegate the executive conduct of the Authority, its administration and organisation and the administrative control of its officers and employees, to any officer or officers of the Authority, who shall also have such other powers as may from time to time be delegated to him or to them by the Board.
- Without prejudice to any other function conferred to him by this Act or any other law or regulation, it shall be the function of the Chairperson to:
(a) assume full responsibility for the overall control and supervision of the Authority;
(b) develop the necessary strategies for the implementation of the objectives of the Authority; and
(c) perform such other duties as the Authority may assign to him from time to time.
Licensing Applications for the issue of licences.
Documents related to granting of temporary licence.
Documents related to Licence Certificate and renewal.
List of all licensed service providers specifying the type of social welfare service being offered, their full name, registered address and other relevant contact details.
List of licensed service providers whose licence has been revoked and any changes in the conditions required for licensing or renewal. Prospective Adoptive Parents Files including the following documents in virtue of Hague 1993 Adoption Convention and the Adoption Administration Act, Chapter 495 of the Laws of Malta:
- Home study report in virtue of the Adoption Administration Act of 2008 – Chapter 495;
- Affidavit of Prospective Adoptive Parents;
- Deceleration of Parents;
- Approval by the Adoption Board;
- Medical Reports of prospective adoptive children; and
- Correspondence & other related documents issued by the Malta Central Authority.
Abduction Files including the following documents in virtue of 1980 HaguConvention on Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction, Council Regulation (EC) No. 2201/2003, and Child Abduction and Custody Act – Chapter 410 of the Laws of Malta:
- Sworn affidavit of the sequence of events;
- Birth certificate of the abducted child;
- Marriage certificate, where applicable of parents;
- Recent photos of the abducted child and parents;
- Correspondence; and
- Details (including police conduct, birth certificate, character references academic qualifications of manager and carers, MEPA permits, structure plan, assessment reports) on social welfare service providers. Maintenance regulation files including the following documents in virtue of the 2007 Hague Convention on the International Recovery of Child Support and Other Forms of Family
Maintenance, Council Regulation (EC) No.4/2009 and
International maintenance obligation order, 2011 (Legal notice 452/11):
- Applications as per EC Regulation 4/2009;
- Court decrees and decisions;
- Correspondence; and
- Report of Case Conference re Care Orders to provide recommendation for a child to be placed under a care order.
- Social Regulatory Standards for Adoption.
- Social Regulatory Standards for Residential Services for Persons with Disability.
- Social Regulatory Standards for Respite Services for Persons with Disability.
- Social Regulatory Standards for Day Centre Services for Persons with Disability.
- Social Regulatory Standards for Residential Services offered to Individuals with problems related to Substance Abuse and other Dependencies.
- Social Regulatory Standards for Outreach and Community-based Services offered to Individuals with problems related to Substance Abuse and other Dependencies.
- Social Regulatory Standards for Residential Services for Children in Alternative Care.
- Social Regulatory Standards for Office-Based Services for Children in Alternative Care.
- Social Regulatory Standards for High Dependency Chronic Care Services for Older Persons.
- National Adoption Strategy for Children and their Family (2019 – 2022).
Requests for information can be submitted on: email@example.com
An applicant whose request for information is refused, or who is otherwise not satisfied with the information provided, its format or the extension of the deadline for the submission of the notification indicating whether a request would be met or not, may address a complaint to the Ministry. The complaint should be addressed to the Ministry’s Principal FOI Officer, who shall bring the complaint to the attention of the officer responsible (i.e. the most senior official within the Ministry). The officer responsible shall reply to the applicant within 10 working days from the receipt of the complaint. The applicant shall also be informed that he or she may appeal the decision or otherwise address a complaint to the Information and Data Protection Commissioner in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act (Cap. 496 of the Laws of Malta). The officer responsible shall inform the applicant of the decision taken with respect to his or her complaint, and in the event of confirmation of a decision not to release the pertinent information, shall explain the reasons thereof. Whenever the applicant’s complaint, is related to the format of the information provided, or to an extension of the deadline for the submission of the notification indicating whether a request would be met or not by the Ministry, and the original decision is upheld the applicant shall be given an explanation as to why his or her complaint cannot be positively addressed. An applicant may also make use of the Internal Complaints Procedure to report failure to meet deadlines or to send notifications.
Request and Complaint Forms may be downloaded from the Ministry’s website www.family.gov.mt. Payments in cash can be made at the Finance Office, Social Care Standards Authority, 469, Bugeia Institute, St Joseph High Road, Sta Venera SVR 1020. Payments can also be made by cheque payable to the Social Care Standards Authority.