Closure of Kemback Street Resource Centre sees action group angry at council’s ‘arrogance’

The Kemback Street Action Group has claimed it has been ”treated with contempt”, after Dundee City Council decided to close the centre.

The city’s councillors voted to close the facility for people with learning difficulties at the social work and health committee last Monday night.

The 16-13 decision was returned after two hours of debate.

But members of the Action Group maintain their claim that not all of the one-to-one assessment meetings with service users to discuss their future options were completed before the council vote to close.

Following the council’s decision, they passed a vote of no confidence in the director of social work and his senior staff at their own meeting.

George Stewart of the group said: ”As a result of the decision taken by the social work committee at the meeting on Monday night, a motion of no confidence in the director of social work and the senior staff in the learning disabilities section of the department was passed unanimously.

”The reasons for passing this motion were that the director and his staff had been advised in writing, prior to the meeting, that a number of the assessments to determine the needs of the service users had not taken place.”

Mr Stewart said at a meeting of the group on October 16 that six families revealed they had not yet had their assessment interview.

He said: ”Alan Baird (director of social work) was advised of this and the names of the families involved provided to him at his request. We had been advised and assured that an assessment of needs would be carried out by the care manager.”

Mr Stewart said the group was ”really upset” by Monday’s decision and they were exploring legal action.

He said: ”We were really upset on Monday night with the arrogance of the council. Every opposition councillor agreed with us that the administration had not followed the process they set out in March.

”The assessment meetings were not done.”

Mr Stewart said he has been in touch with the Care Inspectorate and plans to write an official letter of complaint to the council.

”I will ultimately go to the ombudsman,” he said.

”We haven’t totally given up hope but we are getting very, very concerned about the arrogance and the way they told us a certain process would be followed and then it hasn’t been.

”This is simply treating us with contempt.”

A spokesman for the city council yesterday responded: ”A formal decision to close Kemback Street was taken by the council committee this week.”