Under pressure from central government cuts, Haringey Council has formulated proposals that will cut services for vulnerable adults in our community. The Council’s proposals affect service users of Linden Road and Osborne Grove residential homes as well as Roundways, Birbeck Road, Always and Ermine Road Day Care Centres. The proposals particularly affect those with autism, learning disabilities and other complex needs that cannot go uncared for. The proposals also particularly affect the elderly.
I believe that the measure of any civilised society is how it treats its most vulnerable citizens and these proposed cuts are aimed directly at are local community’s most vulnerable members. I have visited the day care centres at the Roundway, Birbeck Road, Always and Ermine Road and Linden Road Residential Home. I have seen first-hand the invaluable services that the staff and centres provide. I have also visited The Haven and The Grange Day Centres, which provide specialist care for elderly people suffering from moderate to advanced dementia. I was again struck by the excellent service these centres provide. Cutting these services would have a severe and irreversible effect on the lives of the service users and residents.
While I understand the Council’s financial restraints, I feel a moral obligation to speak for the vulnerable members of our community. That is why I wrote two letters to Haringey Council and voiced my strong opposition to these proposals. Unfortunately, the Cabinet unanimously approved these proposals on 10 November.
Therefore, I have written a third time to Peter Morton, Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, as well as all the other councillors outlining my proposed alternative to their current scheme. As you may know, in the Autumn Statement the Chancellor announced that councils will be entitled to increase their council taxes by up to 2% if they are facing a social care funding crisis. I believe Haringey Council should take this opportunity and institute a 2% rise in council taxes; this extra 2% will be ring-fenced and will be specifically allocated to social care provision. This would allow our day centres and residential homes to continue with the amazing work they do for elderly and vulnerable residents. We must not turn a blind eye to the most vulnerable members of our community.