Labour Councillors’ call for safer care, more support for Suffolk’s Care Homes and better staff training voted down by the Conservatives.

Labour Motion calling on the Council to re-evaluate its approach to care home placements and training was voted down at today’s session of Full Council.

The Motion called on the Administration to stop placing residents in homes that are “Inadequate” or “Requires Improvement”, and to ensure that the rates paid to providers for Care Home placements are sufficient for a sustainably good level of provision. The Motion also called on the Council to consider establishing an in-house care home staff training programme, in order to guarantee a higher standard of care. Suffolk County Council has placed large numbers of elderly people in care homes already rated ‘Inadequate’ and ‘Requires Improvement’ and Labour believe that the Administration will need to pay more in order to secure safe and appropriate homes in the future.

Cllr Sarah Adams, Labour Group Spokesperson for Health and Adult Care, said “As things currently stand, the Council is seriously underpaying for its Care Home placements, with the estimated shortfall coming to around £3-5Million per year at minimum. Within the current climate, with at least a third of our care homes below standard, this is obscene.  Working with the care home providers to re-evaluate rates for residents is the only sensible course of action available to the administration.”

Cllr Adams continued, “A new council-run training programme would have improved the delivery of training for care home staff, enabling the Council to maintain the quality of care across the county. And the practice of placing residents in inadequate care homes is simply not good enough and has to stop. I am bitterly disappointed that this motion was voted down by the Conservative Councillors.”

Labour Leader, Sandy Martin, who seconded the motion, added “What confidence can anyone have that they or their elderly relatives are safe in the hands of Suffolk County Council?  The Conservatives have no answer to the crisis in care. Their refusal to put the real needs of Suffolk residents ahead of an obsession with saving money can only make the situation worse and worse.”

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