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Campaigners fight care home closures

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A campaign group fighting plans to close all council-run care homes has told how some of the most vulnerable residents in the borough would be affected if proposals went ahead.

Doncaster Council’s proposed closures include all seven council-run care homes and four out of the eight adult education centres.

The move comes after the authority announced it needs to make savings of £109 million over the next three years.

Around 10,000 signatures opposing the plans have already been collected by the Caregate group, ahead of the end of the consultation period on April 30.

The four day care centres affected are Conisbrough Social Education Centre, Cedar Social Education Centre in Balby, Thorne Social Education Centre and Askern Day Centre.

A spokesman for the Caregate group said: “Residents of these homes are vulnerable, elderly people, who in most cases cannot speak up for themselves.

“The residents have built relationships and trust with staff and other residents and do not want to move. Some have lived years in the same home and would have great difficulty and stress in moving to another home.

“We are trying to show the council not only the legal implications involving human rights lawyers, but also the emotional turmoil and possible health risks caused by the move. One lady of 102 was crying, worrying where she was going to live. Sadly she was not the only one.”

Mayor Ros Jones said: “I didn’t get into politics to cut services and I understand the concerns of these residents and their families.

“I don’t want to close council care homes but we must also deal responsibly with the massive cuts imposed on Doncaster by central government. I will make sure everyone in Doncaster who needs residential care has access to it.

“No final decision has yet been made and we will be carefully considering all the implications of the proposal.”

A cabinet decision on whether to go ahead with the closures will be made in June.

To sign an online petition visit www.change.org under the title Government.

You can also email the consultation directly on carehomesconsultaiton@doncaster.gov.uk with your own opinions to the proposals, or write to Care Homes Consultation, Floor 2, Civic Office, Waterdale, DN1 3BU.

 

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