Inequality and exclusion are characteristic of the experience of UK South Asian communities. In health care, community needs are often not addressed by health and social welfare services. An increase in cultural competency is now part of identified policy. The aim of this paper is to examine the extent to which there is evidence of cultural competency amongst professionals concerning South Asian parents caring for a person with cerebral palsy. Semi‐structured interviews were conducted with respondents from 19 service organisations. Results are presented on perceptions of service delivery and on the dynamics of service development: evidence is found that inadequate service delivery continues despite professional knowledge that it exists. Conditions necessary for the achievement of cultural competence are discussed. We suggest that service development to meet the needs of South Asian carers must form part of an overall strategy geared to change at different levels within and outside service organisations.