I am in possession of numerous documents that confirm East Riding of Yorkshire Council (ERYC) has banned Independent Supported Living (ISL) residents from accessing day services since March 2020.
As part of their Care Plan, to develop their social and language skills and maintain a reasonably active lifestyle, an estimated 40 East Riding residents attended Mires Beck Nursery for between 1 to 5 days a week. This came to a halt at the start of the first Lockdown.
Mires Beck Nursery, North Cave has a capacity for 100 service users. Currently, up to 60 of these are being utilised, predominately by Hull City Council (HCC) which was happy for selected service users to return to Mires Beck last Christmas/New Year period. So why are East Riding ISL residents still banned?
In August 2020 Mires Beck was successful in their bid for Lottery funding to put in Covid 19 safety measures. This was to enable Mires Beck to take all service users back. The £88,000 funding, as well as paying for additional staffing also funded:
- Additional workbenches for new work areas
- Hand wash stations for greenhouses
- Sanitising stations
- Covered walkways for queuing at distance into the building
- Additional minibus hire
- Additional driver cost
- 3 portacabins hire
- 2 temporary additional toilet block hires for 6 toilets.
- Specialist disabled toilet
- Orientation wayfinding
- Wood burner for prop greenhouse
- Sundries for craft per team
This funding, by the Lottery Commission, facilitated the safe return of all Hull/East Riding service users but not those from the East Riding who live in ISLs. They remain banned over 8 months later.
Why is this?
I have had sight of documentation that confirms that some East Riding ISL residents are still paying their original monthly charge to attend Mires Beck but they are banned from attending by Officers at East Riding Council.
ERYC fund the vast majority of the monthly charge which has equated to approximately £500,000 over the past 17 months. Service users have been told by East Riding Officials to continue paying since the beginning of lockdown for little or no face-to-face service. More specifically, in a letter to service users from East Riding, it states
‘pay your day care provider the same weekly amount that you did before the pandemic, even if you do not receive the same amount of service as before’
ERYC Reason To “Ban”
I am informed that for East Riding ISL residents to return to Mires Beck specific approval must be given by ERYC
ERYC states that it “will not be able to offer a placement to those living in ISLs until they can be sure that the risk of cross-infection from people moving across services has reduced”.
Yet, after contacting Public Health England today it was confirmed that they have NO specific guidelines for this group of disabled individuals who reside in ISLs.
Why are East Riding ISL residents banned when all East Riding schools are open?
View From Mires Beck
ERYC Adult Services are clearly as shambolic as ERYC Children Service – ERYC: Over 500 Families In Crisis.
ERYC Adult Services need to sort this mess out as soon as possible for the good of disabled people who have been denied access to their routine and follow the UK Governments’ ethical framework for adult social care published in April this year.
I have referred my evidence to Caroline Lacey, ERYC Chief Executive, and ERYC Councillors requesting immediate and appropriate action for the benefit of all East Riding ISL residents.