Union condemns move to slash help for carers in Kirklees

Trade union members protest outside Huddersfield Town Hall as senior councillors meet to agree cuts to adult social services.
Trade union members protest outside Huddersfield Town Hall as senior councillors meet to agree cuts to adult social services.
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FAMILIES looking after adults with special needs could be left to fend for themselves after drastic cuts were approved by council chiefs this week.

Despite huge opposition to axing adult social care spending by families, carers and staff, Kirklees Council’s cabinet said it had no choice and would go bankrupt if it didn’t slash spending.

It will mean only people whose need is classed as ‘critical’ need will get social services support as the council aims to save £2m a year over the next three years.

A council workers union said the move was a ‘step backwards.’

A spokesman said: “Sadly, the denial of services may escalate some people into the critical bracket as carers who previously managed with support offered under the ‘substantial’ criteria can no longer cope without support such as day care services.”

Outside the Kirklees Cabinet meeting Unison member Kath McHendry said: “Carers are going to get no breaks, so will end up breaking down.”

The changes mean people like Christine Irish, who is cared for by her sister and 72-year-old father, could lose vital support like day care.

Cabinet member Coun Molly Walton said: “We have to face reality, and if we don’t do that, I have been informed, that within three years we will not have any social services.”

See this week’s paper for the full story.