Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Local Liberal Democrats want assurances on Southern Cross care home

The Welsh Liberal Democrat Assembly Member for South Wales West, Peter Black has asked the Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services to ensure that the financial difficulties of Southern Cross do not affect the elderly residents at care homes throughout Wales.

Mr. Black tabled an urgent question in the Assembly Plenary today to ask the Minister to reassure residents and staff who face an uncertain future. He wanted more details on any safety net that was in place if the company goes under.

In response the Health Minister said that she has met with local government officials to reinforce her view that there are effective contingency plans and that she has been assured that clear protection arrangements are in place and no one will be left without the care they need

Commenting, Mr. Black said: “Southern Cross supports over 1,772 people in 34 care homes across Wales. The uncertainty of this situation will be a huge stress on the residents and their families. Whatever happens to the company, the interests of residents and staff are paramount.

“The Welsh Government needs to work with local Authorities and health boards to provide assurance for all concerned that if this company fails then residents will maintain continuity of care and minimal disruption.”

In response to today's news that Southern Cross is cutting nearly 7% of its workforce, including nursing staff, Councillor Keith Davies, leader of the Liberal Democrat group on Neath Port Talbot council expressed concern about the future of Cwrt Clwydi Gwyn, a Southern Cross care home in New Road, Skewen near his Coedffranc North ward. Keith hoped that the impeccable service which the care home had provided until now would not be jeopardised by the job cuts or the financial woes of Southern Cross. He supported Peter Black's call for assurances.

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