Girtrell Court – Respite extended until end of June

At last night’s Wirral West Constituency Committee, carers spoke from the heart and with passion about the impact the closure of Girtrell Court would have on them and their loved ones.   They also spoke about the unknown during the consultation process and the fact that people could not book respite after March because Girtrell Court were not accepting bookings beyond that date.

We were delighted that the constituency committee agreed to send a resolution to the Cabinet that closure of Girtrell Court should not go ahead and that respite at Girtrell Court be reinstated while the consultation takes place.   Sadly the six Labour Councillors, two of which are Cabinet Members did not support the resolution and abstained.

That said clearly a message about the lack of respite did get through to Graham Hodkinson the Director of Adult Social Services who attended the meeting and tried to answer the difficult questions put to him without much success, however we have learned that he has agreed to reopen bookings for respite at Girtrell Court until the end of June.   If you click on this LINK you can read the letter he will be sending to carers and users of Girtrell Court.  We are delighted to have been able to play our part in helping secure this concession.

This is a small but substantial victory, however the fight to make sure Girtrell Court stays open continues right up until the Cabinet makes its decision at its meeting on the 22nd February at Wallasey Town Hall, the meeting is open to the public and starts at 10am.

We are aware that Unison are arranging a protest lobby at the Town Hall starting at 9am prior to the Cabinet meeting and would welcome as much support as possible so that a very strong message is sent to the Cabinet.

No Decision in Public, Closure in Private!

STARTS

Campaigners fighting to save the Council’s only respite care facility have revealed that the Authority has now banned families from making any bookings at Girtrell Court after March. At the same time, staff have been issued with redundancy notices, stating their jobs are ‘to be deleted’.

At two meetings of Constituency Committees (Wallasey and West Wirral), members of the Cabinet and the Director of Adult Social Services assured families that ‘no decision’ has been taken and that the closure plan is ‘out for consultation’ ahead of the Council’s budget meeting next month.

Councillor Chris Blakeley said: “This week, we have learned that these public assurances are meaningless. Families are now in a state of limbo as they cannot make bookings for respite care after March while staff have been told to leave. Yet, even at this late stage, the Town Hall has failed to find acceptable, alternative provision.”

ENDS