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Union bosses set to fight plans to shut care homes
UNION bosses have pledged to fight plans to scrap residential homes in Hampshire.
Unison says it is working with staff and the local community to contest proposals to shut four homes.
This would see 121 long-term residents moved and 193 staff at risk of redundancy, some of whom were redeployed following previous home closures.
Unison spokeswoman Jan Matthews said: “The residents of these homes are cherished family members who want their end of life care plans and human rights to be honoured and respected.
“The Conservative-led council are misleading the public by suggesting that there is falling demand for residential care homes of this nature.
“This is a smokescreen for cutting services and privatising adult social care. We are frequently being told by care managers and social workers that homes listed for closure cannot accommodate further residents and that there is a bed block.
“Life expectancy has risen so demand on elderly care provision will increase.
“The council has amassed £418m in reserves and seems to have lost sight of the need to deliver quality public services.”
Council bosses say it would cost more than £10m to modernise the homes built between the 1960s and early 1980s. Problems include small bedrooms with no space for hoists to lift disabled residents.
The council says demand for residential care is falling as more people want to remain independent.
Under the proposals, care homes in Lyndhurst, Romsey and Petersfield would be turned into extra care housing schemes. They are individual flats with support services available.
The Basingstoke home would be sold, with proceeds ploughed into extra care housing.
Civic chiefs say the change would provide more choice and independence.
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