8 months until D-Day for Kingswood Drive respite service

Steve McCabe MP is urging people in need of respite care to take advantage of Kingswood Drive bungalows before any final decisions are made about the service in March 2015.

Since November 2013 Steve has been pushing for concrete answers on the future of Kingswood Drive bungalows, a respite service designed to support adults with learning difficulties, their families and their carers. After months of vague responses, the Director of the Joint Commissioning Team, issued a statement to make it clear that Kingswood Drive bungalows are open for business. This statement represents a huge success for Kingswood Drive carers group who have been relentlessly fighting to keep the service open. However, this announcement came after many applicants were refused because the assessment criteria changed without carers or their families being informed.

The Director of the Joint Commissioning Team also said that Birmingham City Council is looking at ways to expand the service and were looking at potentially reopening one of the bungalows to get better use from the site. Kingswood Drive carers group have continuously requested that the other bungalow is reopened so that they can use the additional 6 beds to accommodate more adults with learning difficulties, previously this request has been ignored.

A project team has now been put together consisting of the Kingswood Drive carers group, Hob Moor Road carers, the Joint Commissioning Team, Birmingham Community Healthcare and Birmingham City Council Specialist Care Services. The purpose of the project team is to develop proposals for the future of Kingswood Drive bungalows and decisions around long term plans will be made by March 2015.

Steve McCabe MP said:

“I am pleased that the Director of the Joint Commissioning Team has issued a statement to say Kingswood Drive bungalows are open for business. I was shocked to discover anyone could consider closing this fantastic facility. The change of heart shows that they did not expect carers and service users to put up such a fight.

“The hard work is not over yet and I know that the local community do not want to see the bungalows go which is why this presents a fantastic opportunity for people to show that Kingswood Drive bungalows are a lifeline for most carers and their loved ones. This is why I am urging people who could benefit from the service to apply to Kingswood Drive bungalows.”

Please contact Steve McCabe MP if you are interested in applying or for further information by emailing him at: stephen.mccabe.mp@parliament.uk

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