It is a very sad day for residents in Croydon and a particularly sad day for any residents living in the borough who are in receipt of adult social care services for it is these residents who are going to be disproportionately impacted by this budget. It is these residents who are unable to care for themselves, who are in receipt of complex care packages and mental health support, those who have disabilities or struggle to navigate their way through daily life, who are going to be hardest hit. The poorest and most vulnerable are now the target for this Labour administration who have chosen to make these decisions and have chosen to bring their axe down on desperate residents who are still trying to get through COVID and in some cases haven’t left their homes for nearly a year.
Some 7,000 residents will see their care packages impacted in some way but most disturbing is the impact this will have on the 2,500 residents who are in receipt of complex care. It is these residents who will have a focused attention on their service package because it is these residents who cost more. The numbers are astounding some 20% is expected in savings in these packages and to put that in to context savings of £17 million for 2021, 10.7 million in 2022 and 9.5 in 2023 are the headline figures. The overspend for Adult Social Care in quarter 3 is £21.3 million.
We have already seen the savage cuts to departments supporting these residents such as the Disability Employment team and the Welfare Rights Team. The CATS transportation service who supported elderly residents who were housebound with their buses was also cut.
Even care beds are to be removed for those sick residents discharged from hospital. Don’t bother calling the contact centre if you are in trouble after all this because the support service is also being cut. And if you are housebound and feel isolated and nobody is able to help you and you want to contact the voluntary sector organisations; they too are expecting severe cuts.
Those vulnerable adults attending the Peter Sylvester Centre will see it close and there is great uncertainty about their future provision.
The Auditors call it Corporate Blindness that has brought Croydon to its knees. I call it sheer incompetence. It is quite worrying that the strategic approach has been to hit these people hardest.