Services for most vulnerable could be axed due to £30.8m hole

Daily Echo: Lynette Hall and her daughter, 35-year-old Jennie. Lynette Hall and her daughter, 35-year-old Jennie.

PARENTS have pleaded with council bosses in Southampton not to cut their children’s “lifeline”.

Day services for people with learning disabilities are under threat as Labour city council chiefs put forward their latest round of proposed cuts.

Now campaigners for those who use the services are calling for an immediate rethink and say it will have a major inpact on some of the city’s most vulnerable residents.

As previously reported, cash-strapped civic chiefs have to find £30.8m in savings for 2015/16 alone.

And while Labour council chiefs have found £4.5m in one-off pots of money to help plug the gap, cherished services across the city are now facing the axe.

They have put forward a £7.7m “mini-budget” of proposals, which could be given the green light in September, and could see almost 200 jobs axed and the Woodside Lodge care home for elderly people with dementia closed.

Among the proposals are cutting day services for adults with learning disabilities, which are run in community centres in St Denys, Woolston and Freeman-tle and other locations across the city, which would save £700,000 a year.

Activities such as cookery, dance, art and walking and workshops on self-reliance and personal presentation are offered at the sessions, which can be for up to 30 people at a time.

And the council-run centre at Kentish Road, which allows carers respite and emergency facilities if they are unable to look after loved ones, could also close.

Lynette Hall’s daughter, 35-year-old Jennie, attends sessions four days a week, and enjoys activities such as artwork and dancing.

The 60-year-old from Sholing has pleaded with council bosses to change their minds on the proposals to axe day services.

She said: “The service is important to Jennie.

“She doesn’t like change and it won’t be the people who decide the changes who will feel the fallout if it closes – it will be me who she will blame.”

Lynette and Jennie have already been hit by recent council cuts, when they were among 91 families to see rent allowance payments go up as part of the 2012/13 budget.

She added: “It’s difficult to deal with at times, because obviously carers are under pressure daily and that pressure can increase with circumstances like this.”

Alan Sharpen’s 43-year-old son Geoffrey attends day service sessions five days a week.

The 74-year-old from Bassett said: “It’s very important for him to do the sessions, they get him out of the house and he likes to go. He meets other people and it also gives myself and my wife respite.

“It would be difficult if the service is taken away.”

Alex Iles, chief cxecutive of charity Southampton Mencap, said: “It’s disappointing that vulnerable people will be affected, and it will impact on their carers’ ability to keep caring.

“Services such as these are vital to a large majority of people who use day services – continuity, familiarity and a building-based service are all crucial elements which contribute to the quality of their lives.”

Labour council leader Simon Letts said: “We have spoken to other councils which have made this move, and we have been told the outcome is quite good for the clients that are affected as they have more choice.

“We will do our best to work with people to let them know what their choices might be.”

Even if council chiefs approve the “mini-budget”, another £17.3m in savings still needs to be found by November, when the full budget proposals for 2015/16 will be published.

Comments (12)

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10:02am Wed 9 Jul 14

creakyjack says...

Another day another cost cutting agenda. With little care or thoughts taken for familys effected.who use these services as a life line.all to often they cut services cause of money probs.but what about the people who are effected.no thought to them.only thought is to clear the debt.yes we are in debt.but at what cost taken funding from here there to fill a hole here . eventually it will bring deaths than an outcry as to why this happened this workers to blame blah blah but basically its service user life.the systems corrupt and all to often when things go pear shaped it swept under the carpet blame on many things.its ok for people who hav no idea hows things are on the frontline of services to decide whether these services survive.but deep all the way in Westminster they are chucking bck large quantity of champagne at our expense NICE a
Another day another cost cutting agenda. With little care or thoughts taken for familys effected.who use these services as a life line.all to often they cut services cause of money probs.but what about the people who are effected.no thought to them.only thought is to clear the debt.yes we are in debt.but at what cost taken funding from here there to fill a hole here . eventually it will bring deaths than an outcry as to why this happened this workers to blame blah blah but basically its service user life.the systems corrupt and all to often when things go pear shaped it swept under the carpet blame on many things.its ok for people who hav no idea hows things are on the frontline of services to decide whether these services survive.but deep all the way in Westminster they are chucking bck large quantity of champagne at our expense NICE a creakyjack
  • Score: 12

10:45am Wed 9 Jul 14

From the sidelines says...

creakyjack wrote:
Another day another cost cutting agenda. With little care or thoughts taken for familys effected.who use these services as a life line.all to often they cut services cause of money probs.but what about the people who are effected.no thought to them.only thought is to clear the debt.yes we are in debt.but at what cost taken funding from here there to fill a hole here . eventually it will bring deaths than an outcry as to why this happened this workers to blame blah blah but basically its service user life.the systems corrupt and all to often when things go pear shaped it swept under the carpet blame on many things.its ok for people who hav no idea hows things are on the frontline of services to decide whether these services survive.but deep all the way in Westminster they are chucking bck large quantity of champagne at our expense NICE a
I wonder if there will still be classes for people with sub-normal English skills.
[quote][p][bold]creakyjack[/bold] wrote: Another day another cost cutting agenda. With little care or thoughts taken for familys effected.who use these services as a life line.all to often they cut services cause of money probs.but what about the people who are effected.no thought to them.only thought is to clear the debt.yes we are in debt.but at what cost taken funding from here there to fill a hole here . eventually it will bring deaths than an outcry as to why this happened this workers to blame blah blah but basically its service user life.the systems corrupt and all to often when things go pear shaped it swept under the carpet blame on many things.its ok for people who hav no idea hows things are on the frontline of services to decide whether these services survive.but deep all the way in Westminster they are chucking bck large quantity of champagne at our expense NICE a[/p][/quote]I wonder if there will still be classes for people with sub-normal English skills. From the sidelines
  • Score: -11

10:55am Wed 9 Jul 14

creakyjack says...

From the sidelines wrote:
creakyjack wrote:
Another day another cost cutting agenda. With little care or thoughts taken for familys effected.who use these services as a life line.all to often they cut services cause of money probs.but what about the people who are effected.no thought to them.only thought is to clear the debt.yes we are in debt.but at what cost taken funding from here there to fill a hole here . eventually it will bring deaths than an outcry as to why this happened this workers to blame blah blah but basically its service user life.the systems corrupt and all to often when things go pear shaped it swept under the carpet blame on many things.its ok for people who hav no idea hows things are on the frontline of services to decide whether these services survive.but deep all the way in Westminster they are chucking bck large quantity of champagne at our expense NICE a
I wonder if there will still be classes for people with sub-normal English skills.
Pmsl are you worride they get rid of your nursery class
[quote][p][bold]From the sidelines[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]creakyjack[/bold] wrote: Another day another cost cutting agenda. With little care or thoughts taken for familys effected.who use these services as a life line.all to often they cut services cause of money probs.but what about the people who are effected.no thought to them.only thought is to clear the debt.yes we are in debt.but at what cost taken funding from here there to fill a hole here . eventually it will bring deaths than an outcry as to why this happened this workers to blame blah blah but basically its service user life.the systems corrupt and all to often when things go pear shaped it swept under the carpet blame on many things.its ok for people who hav no idea hows things are on the frontline of services to decide whether these services survive.but deep all the way in Westminster they are chucking bck large quantity of champagne at our expense NICE a[/p][/quote]I wonder if there will still be classes for people with sub-normal English skills.[/p][/quote]Pmsl are you worride they get rid of your nursery class creakyjack
  • Score: 4

11:04am Wed 9 Jul 14

H0ckeyd says...

From the sidelines wrote:
creakyjack wrote:
Another day another cost cutting agenda. With little care or thoughts taken for familys effected.who use these services as a life line.all to often they cut services cause of money probs.but what about the people who are effected.no thought to them.only thought is to clear the debt.yes we are in debt.but at what cost taken funding from here there to fill a hole here . eventually it will bring deaths than an outcry as to why this happened this workers to blame blah blah but basically its service user life.the systems corrupt and all to often when things go pear shaped it swept under the carpet blame on many things.its ok for people who hav no idea hows things are on the frontline of services to decide whether these services survive.but deep all the way in Westminster they are chucking bck large quantity of champagne at our expense NICE a
I wonder if there will still be classes for people with sub-normal English skills.
As long as there are classes in etiquette and correct manners I'm sure you'll be ok.
[quote][p][bold]From the sidelines[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]creakyjack[/bold] wrote: Another day another cost cutting agenda. With little care or thoughts taken for familys effected.who use these services as a life line.all to often they cut services cause of money probs.but what about the people who are effected.no thought to them.only thought is to clear the debt.yes we are in debt.but at what cost taken funding from here there to fill a hole here . eventually it will bring deaths than an outcry as to why this happened this workers to blame blah blah but basically its service user life.the systems corrupt and all to often when things go pear shaped it swept under the carpet blame on many things.its ok for people who hav no idea hows things are on the frontline of services to decide whether these services survive.but deep all the way in Westminster they are chucking bck large quantity of champagne at our expense NICE a[/p][/quote]I wonder if there will still be classes for people with sub-normal English skills.[/p][/quote]As long as there are classes in etiquette and correct manners I'm sure you'll be ok. H0ckeyd
  • Score: 9

11:07am Wed 9 Jul 14

creakyjack says...

Thank god was getting worried
Thank god was getting worried creakyjack
  • Score: 0

12:22pm Wed 9 Jul 14

sarfhamton says...

It will just mean that families will not be able to cope and people will go into care earlier costing the council even more. The Council are Short sighted idiots.
It will just mean that families will not be able to cope and people will go into care earlier costing the council even more. The Council are Short sighted idiots. sarfhamton
  • Score: 15

2:19pm Wed 9 Jul 14

IronLady2010 says...

sarfhamton wrote:
It will just mean that families will not be able to cope and people will go into care earlier costing the council even more. The Council are Short sighted idiots.
I have to agree with you.

Many services are being cut which will lead to bigger future costs.

Not sure who's advising this Council, but they need sacking!
[quote][p][bold]sarfhamton[/bold] wrote: It will just mean that families will not be able to cope and people will go into care earlier costing the council even more. The Council are Short sighted idiots.[/p][/quote]I have to agree with you. Many services are being cut which will lead to bigger future costs. Not sure who's advising this Council, but they need sacking! IronLady2010
  • Score: 7

4:00pm Wed 9 Jul 14

Gillperry says...

That's ok then simon letts cause you've asked other councils that have already put this into practice
How about asking the service users what they want and need.
The problem with southampton city council is the council officials and mp and councillors who don't actually do anything just go through the motions
I've spent 20 years fighting this council and they have done bugger all to help my son who is now 20 it's bad enough having to deal with a child who is autistic with learning difficulties let alone have to fight decisions that have been made from council officials I feel like a solicitor at times
So come on councillors do your bloody jobs if not don't stand for council ok rant over lol
That's ok then simon letts cause you've asked other councils that have already put this into practice How about asking the service users what they want and need. The problem with southampton city council is the council officials and mp and councillors who don't actually do anything just go through the motions I've spent 20 years fighting this council and they have done bugger all to help my son who is now 20 it's bad enough having to deal with a child who is autistic with learning difficulties let alone have to fight decisions that have been made from council officials I feel like a solicitor at times So come on councillors do your bloody jobs if not don't stand for council ok rant over lol Gillperry
  • Score: 8

6:09pm Wed 9 Jul 14

Kirsty666 says...

We need a new bloody council
We need a new bloody council Kirsty666
  • Score: 4

6:59pm Wed 9 Jul 14

Paramjit Bahia says...

Anybody expecting Southampton's NuLabour run Council to behave like old Labour and care for the vulnerable groups will be disappointed.

Because even the vultures are more likely to let the meat stay away from their beaks than these heartless, ruthless and unprincipled councillors giving up their addiction to preying upon the most vulnerable people.

Yes the Council has financial issues, mainly caused by successive central governments of last few decades. So the councillors should be confronting the real culprits, who can always find billions to bail our their bent bankers buddies or for financing wars or unrest in other countries and contributions to the EU plus massive subsidies to businesses owned by the super rich.

But unfortunately most if not all our gutless and politically coward councillors from all main parties rather than standing up to lousy lot in London, like most thugs and yobs start victimising the weakest members of our society.

All those who believe in humanity should be demanding an end to policies without compassion for vulnerable groups.
Anybody expecting Southampton's NuLabour run Council to behave like old Labour and care for the vulnerable groups will be disappointed. Because even the vultures are more likely to let the meat stay away from their beaks than these heartless, ruthless and unprincipled councillors giving up their addiction to preying upon the most vulnerable people. Yes the Council has financial issues, mainly caused by successive central governments of last few decades. So the councillors should be confronting the real culprits, who can always find billions to bail our their bent bankers buddies or for financing wars or unrest in other countries and contributions to the EU plus massive subsidies to businesses owned by the super rich. But unfortunately most if not all our gutless and politically coward councillors from all main parties rather than standing up to lousy lot in London, like most thugs and yobs start victimising the weakest members of our society. All those who believe in humanity should be demanding an end to policies without compassion for vulnerable groups. Paramjit Bahia
  • Score: 5

7:44pm Wed 9 Jul 14

03alpe01 says...

What gets me is how they are even contemplating cutting services like this whilst having £6.7m for the new Arts Centre? Why can't that £6.7m be cut from the Arts Centre and spent on keeping services like this going? The disabled and vulnerable have it tough enough as it is without even more cuts thrown on them left right and centre. Or why can't Councillors themselves take pay cuts? Everyone else has to. I wonder how long it is until we start seeing Bentleys and Ferraris in the Civic Centre Car Park...
What gets me is how they are even contemplating cutting services like this whilst having £6.7m for the new Arts Centre? Why can't that £6.7m be cut from the Arts Centre and spent on keeping services like this going? The disabled and vulnerable have it tough enough as it is without even more cuts thrown on them left right and centre. Or why can't Councillors themselves take pay cuts? Everyone else has to. I wonder how long it is until we start seeing Bentleys and Ferraris in the Civic Centre Car Park... 03alpe01
  • Score: 0

10:44pm Wed 9 Jul 14

oursin says...

03alpe01 wrote:
What gets me is how they are even contemplating cutting services like this whilst having £6.7m for the new Arts Centre? Why can't that £6.7m be cut from the Arts Centre and spent on keeping services like this going? The disabled and vulnerable have it tough enough as it is without even more cuts thrown on them left right and centre. Or why can't Councillors themselves take pay cuts? Everyone else has to. I wonder how long it is until we start seeing Bentleys and Ferraris in the Civic Centre Car Park...
Shame on SCC for cutting these services while doing deals with property developers, and spending money on trying to turn back time by preventing changing long empty pubs into anything else. More shops, more pubs, and axe services. That 'arts centre' is a prestigious development of retail units and luxury apartments, as it says on the sign. Its a speculative property development ( with a theatre and gallery in there somewhere available to rent...by who??) , and nothing to do with arts in Southampton. Meanwhile they are prepared to cut vital services, lay off most of the gardeners, get rid of the bus that gets people up over a mile from the seafront to that white elephant sea city, flog off a lease on a grade one listed building to a commercial venture etc etc etc .
[quote][p][bold]03alpe01[/bold] wrote: What gets me is how they are even contemplating cutting services like this whilst having £6.7m for the new Arts Centre? Why can't that £6.7m be cut from the Arts Centre and spent on keeping services like this going? The disabled and vulnerable have it tough enough as it is without even more cuts thrown on them left right and centre. Or why can't Councillors themselves take pay cuts? Everyone else has to. I wonder how long it is until we start seeing Bentleys and Ferraris in the Civic Centre Car Park...[/p][/quote]Shame on SCC for cutting these services while doing deals with property developers, and spending money on trying to turn back time by preventing changing long empty pubs into anything else. More shops, more pubs, and axe services. That 'arts centre' is a prestigious development of retail units and luxury apartments, as it says on the sign. Its a speculative property development ( with a theatre and gallery in there somewhere available to rent...by who??) , and nothing to do with arts in Southampton. Meanwhile they are prepared to cut vital services, lay off most of the gardeners, get rid of the bus that gets people up over a mile from the seafront to that white elephant sea city, flog off a lease on a grade one listed building to a commercial venture etc etc etc . oursin
  • Score: 0
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