Care homes closure plan ‘needs rethink’
AN URGENT rethink has been urged over a council’s plan to close its two remaining publicly-run care homes.
Cardiff council announced in February it would shut Penylan’s Ty Mawr Home and Cae Glas Home in Rumney to save £1.15m a year.
Union leaders last night called on the authority to abandon the plans after Southern Cross, Britain’s biggest care home operator, hit financial trouble.
Southern Cross, which has four care homes in the city, has been given four months to find a solution to its debt crisis.
GMB union branch secretary Kenny Daniels said: “With all this business going on with Southern Cross we have sent a letter to the council to say their decision to close (the homes) needs to be revisited with urgency.
“(Care homes) should be both public and private, there is enough demand for it. There are vulnerable people who need help and I think the public sector should be offering an alternative.”
At a meeting last week, relatives of residents at Ty Mawr, in Penylan, claimed they were told by council officers that an assessment had shown it was “safe” to move the residents.
Eleven elderly women – including two who are due to turn 100 over the next two months – face being moved to save the council £600,000 a year.
Siblings Jean Maw and Alan Robertson are leading the fight to save the home, where their 91-year-old mother, Audrey, who suffers from vascular dementia, has lived for the past two years.
Mr Robertson, 61, from Rumney, said: “We feel that we are being taken for mugs. I understand they need to go through due process, but we are talking about uprooting someone at the age of 91 – it’s just inhumane.”
A Cardiff council spokesman said no date had been set for the closure of Ty Mawr and that one option was to move them all together to a care home in Llanishen.
Councillor Kirsty Davies, executive member for social care, said: “The safety and well-being of the residents of Ty Mawr is absolutely our first priority, and we will only move residents once we have fully assessed each of their individual needs and minimised any associated risks. We will continue to work closely with residents and their families to ensure that any transition is carried out sensitively and at an appropriate pace.”
Cae Glas, which cares for dementia sufferers, is earmarked to close next year when a new home is opened by Hafod, a private care firm, in Trowbridge.