We will not allow our welfare to be dismissed as unaffordable
22 June, 2017
A protest outside the Town Hall over plans to introduce care charges and shut down day centres
• ON Wednesday June 14, despite our protests reported by the New Journal, Camden’s cabinet shamefully voted to increase care charges from September and bring in charges for transport to day centres (Disabled activists’ fury over charges, June 15).
£44.2million of our community’s money will be spent to “refurbish” the Old Town Hall (works starts in July) while even more of our disability benefits will be taken.
We told them care charges are leaving us short of money to live on, causing us to stop the services we need, increasing unwaged carers’ overwork and disproportionately hitting families of colour, least likely to be able to afford private care.
Charging for transport to day centres will keep people at home in isolation, and risk the jobs of Camden’s Accessible Transport staff.
The Royal Society of Medicine found 30,000 hastened deaths in 2015 from cuts in NHS and social care.
Yet again councillors blamed central government cuts to their grant. But they refuse to press for more money, instead passing on the cuts to the most vulnerable people.
Cllr Pat Callaghan went so low as to personally attack Jane Clinton, from the Save Netherwood Campaign. She said: “Jane, I’m surprised at you. Your father was looked after very well in Camden.”
Should she, therefore, turn her back on others with dementia? We demand an apology for Ms Clinton.
In the election we voted no to Theresa May’s dementia tax, and yes to Jeremy Corbyn’s and John McDonnell’s funding for social care. Camden’s priorities must reflect Labour’s manifesto.
Hammersmith & Fulham brought in free homecare in 2015 and this year set a “compassionate budget”. They looked at all their expenditure to prioritise people’s welfare and decent pay for staff.
Camden claims that free homecare is unaffordable as it would cost £3.8million. But how many millions were spent on the New Town Hall at 5 Pancras Square? Who ordered the refurbishment of the Old Town Hall? What contractors are being used? And do councillors of any party have any interests?
Since the terrible and avoidable Grenfell Tower fire, every council is under scrutiny. We will not allow our welfare to be dismissed as unaffordable and stamped on. No cuts. No closures.
& CHERYL McLENNAN
Save Netherwood Campaign