Are day care services for disabled adults and children under attack in Ealing?

The latest edition of the Neighbours Paper features news about the threat of closure of Heller House in Southall due to Ealing Council budget cuts. Carlton Road Day Centre is facing the same fate, as SAD Ealing explains:

Carlton Road Day Centre is a day service located in Carlton Road (W4 5DY), on the borders of Acton and Chiswick. It serves more than 30 users with profound and multiple learning disabilities and a complex diagnosis (many who also have epilepsy and are wheelchair users with little or no mobility) with a full day care service, giving them the chance to undertake a variety of therapeutic and physical activities as well as providing a suitable space to socialise and spend time with friends and peers outside of the home environment.

It also allows the phenomenally hard working parents & carers a little time (and respite) from the rigours of day to day caring for a learning and physically disabled son or daughter, thereby preserving their health and wellbeing and allowing them as parents to care for their offspring for longer and for the better in the long term; (thereby saving the state the expense).

As the users are so very disabled, it is fully fitted out with hoists and changing areas for suitable and dignified toileting which is undertaken by an experienced, longstanding and professional staff team, all who are now facing redundancy. The staff team also have strong advocacy skills for their users and review, report and monitor users regularly and liaise with health teams and families to ensure the users are given the best chances in life and retain their dignity and independence at all times.

Ealing Council, facing a huge budget cut from central government has decided that the centre will close in May 2015, before which each user will be re-assessed and parents & carers handed an individual budget to themselves provide for their son or daughter’s care. Parents and carers will be ‘signposted’ towards what Ealing Council regards as suitable alternatives to the Carlton Road day service. These services are mainly non-existent within the borough for people of such a profound level of disability. It is all very rushed and poorly thought out.

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