Telford & Wrekin Council doesn’t provide enough care facilities for young adults (under 50) but has more than it needs for the elderly. We would talk to neighbouring local authorities about forming a care co-operative to share facilities for the elderly to avoid the current situation where the council has to reserve more rooms than it needs and use the money saved to provide more facilities for young adults.
UKIP councillors would make increasing provision of respite and residential care services for young adults a priority.
Like most local authorities, Telford & Wrekin provides good quality care services for young and elderly people but there is a gap where people who don’t fall in either of those age brackets find it difficult to get adequate services.
There are very few care homes in Telford & Wrekin that cater for young adults and the statutory duty placed on local authorities in England to provide social care for young adults is nowhere near as comprehensive as it is for the young and elderly. Telford & Wrekin Council spends a large amount of taxpayers’ money holding rooms with private care homes for the elderly which sit empty a lot of the time to meet the British government’s targets on elderly care provision yet only one care home in the borough offers pre-bookable respite for young adults.
Clearly we can’t ignore the legal obligations on availability of rooms for the elderly but we would address the shortfall in provision of care for young adults with more flexible contracts with care providers. We would also investigate the feasibility of commissioning at least one new council-owned care home in Telford and forming a care co-operative with neighbouring local authorities to share pre-booked rooms.
Whilst sharing block-booked rooms with neighbouring authorities will occasionally mean people having to travel further for short-term residential care (something that already happens, especially for young adults), it would at least maintain the current levels of availability whilst saving money by block booking the number of rooms that are actually required rather than the one-size-fits-all targets set by the British government.