Disability organisation slams Bristol Council’s proposals to remove right to home care

Disability Rights UK has slammed plans to remove the rights of Disabled people to at-home care by Bristol Council as ‘absolutely unacceptable’ and in breach of the law.

In letters to the Bristol mayor Marvin Rees and Emma Edwards, leader of Bristol Council’s Green Party group, Disability Rights UK chief executive Kamran Mallick said that it was ‘absolutely unacceptable’ that the draft policy talks about overriding the option to receive care and support in the home if the council decides this would not achieve ‘best value’.

red and white miniature building

He went on to say that while ‘councils need to have regard to their wider obligations to the public … at no point should this strategic consideration mean that individual Disabled citizens are refused care and support at home because it is more expensive than residential accommodation. The draft policy, as stated, is incompatible with the rights we are granted under the Care Act 2014.’

Bristol Council has proposed measures in its draft Fair and Affordable Care Policy that could see some care users lose the option of independent living, under which they can receive care in their own home rather than a care home. The council’s consultation documents admit that people may not receive their preferred support.

Suggested ‘cost effective measures in the policy include installing ceiling hoists in a care user’s home rather than funding a care worker or personal assistant.

Most controversially, shared accommodation including residential and care homes may be considered for adults if the council judges domiciliary care to be too expensive.

The Care Act requires local authorities to promote citizens’ wellbeing and meet eligible care and support needs in the way that best suits the person.

He continued: ‘The draft ‘Fair and affordable care’ policy is nowhere near strong enough in setting out the council’s Care Act duties to promote well-being, provide person-centred support and meet eligible needs.

‘We see no way to make this policy workable and would ask that it is withdrawn.’

Disability Rights UK is encouraging Disabled people in Bristol to write to their local councillors to stop the proposed policy from being implemented. It has created a template letter that local residents can use to express their desire for the policy to be scrapped.

Image: Elena Mozhvilo

More on this topic:

UK government failing to protect disabled people, warns equality watchdog report

Report reveals Disabled children disproportionately affected by cost-of-living crisis


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