Children’s Home Staff Hit Back At Report Claims

Staff at two under-threat Swansea children’s homes have hit out at council bosses. In a statement from the Unison and GMB unions, staff at Ty Gwaun and Ty Cwm children’s homes say they have been left stunned by comments from Swansea Council, following an inspection report by the Care and Social Services Inspectorate Wales.

The report has not been made public, though Unison says staff were informed by a senior manager that the homes might close.

The union sent letters to all councillors to protest against the proposal.

The report raised health and safety concerns, as well as an alleged lack of a homely atmosphere at the two Cockett homes, Ty Gwn and Ty Gwaun.

But staff at both homes say that in previous reports the homeliness was praised, as was the rapport between staff and the eight children living in the two facilities.

They also say that a busy road running near the homes does not pose a danger to the children.

“The homes are actually based on a campus with a 5mph restriction and speed bumps.

“There is a busy road at the access to the campus, which has houses built along the entire road, and there is also a school located closer to this main road than the children’s homes.

“No member of staff can ever recall an accident involving any young person on this road.”

The unions say the most recent report does not accurately reflect the quality and care that staff give at both homes.

“We are very committed to our service and supporting children and do not want the homes to close,” the statement concluded.

It is thought that the report will be reviewed on Thursday, at a meeting in County Hall.

In a statement, a spokesman for Swansea Council said: “The council last year opened the purpose-built Nant y Felin children’s home in Blaenymaes, offering state-of-the-art accommodation and facilities for up to eight young people.

“In contrast, Ty Gwaun and Ty Cwm are former bungalows which were converted into homes for children in 1996.

“As a result, there are accommodation issues including small bedrooms, and shared bathroom and toilet facilities.

“Inspectors have said the units are not homely or welcoming.”

She added that no decision had yet been taken on the future of the homes.