Monday, 1 February 2010

Lib Dems condemn Labour handling of care home closures

Liberal Democrat councillors in Redcar and Cleveland have condemned Labour’s handling of care home closures in the Borough.

The Labour council is proposing to close the four care homes it owns in Guisborough, Redcar, Ormesby and Brotton. Their future has been in doubt for many months now, causing uncertainty and insecurity for the residents, their families and staff.

Liberal Democrats believe that, whilst there is clearly a trend towards new purpose built private sector care facilities, it is vital to retain at least one public sector home in the Borough which can also provide respite care. Local Authority homes have always been more expensive to run, but the emphasis has been on care for the elderly and not profit.

Lib Dem Prospective MP for Redcar, Ian Swales, said:

“Labour has dithered around for far too long on this issue, causing uncertainty and stress for residents, their families and staff. The Council has already introduced a £25 charge for day care centres, deterring people from attending. Now it's clear that the Council intends to close all its elderly care homes.”

“The Council’s consultation was inadequate and offered very limited options. The Council only examined two possibilities.”

“Clearly the current situation cannot carry on, and some of the homes have to close. However, it is the Council’s duty to provide a safety net of care for those who need it.”

“Can the Council guarantee that suitable alternative accommodation can be found in time, to avoid disruption and upset for people who need care?”

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