People Before Profit Alliance Derry Statement on Residential Care Home

‘Public Consultation’ is a mockery; Keep the Care Homes Open!

The Western Health and Social Care Trust recently announced the beginning of a three-month ‘public consultation’ into the potential closure of the William Street and Rectory Field residential care homes. If the Western Health Trust’s proposals were to be approved, the care homes would cease to take admissions and eventually close next February or March following further approval from the Health and Social Care Board and the NI Health Minister.

Officials representing the Western Health Trust stressed that no decision had yet been taken. Meaning, the voice of existing residents, care workers, families and all those concerned with the impact of potential closures and the future of the NHS would shape the discussion and the outcome. However, UNISON, the union representing workers at both of the facilities issued a statement revealing that a Western Health Trust paper dated from July 2015 called ‘Reform of Older People’s Day Care Services’ recommends Foyleview Day Centre services be moved to William Street Residential Care Home.

Effectively, this provides strong evidence suggesting the closure of the William Street Residential Care Home is predetermined. This makes a mockery of the ‘public consultation’.

People Before Profit Derry support UNISON’s demand for the Western Health Trust’s so-called consultation exercise to be ended. We stand in solidarity with residents, workers and families at both facilities protesting against their closure. We call on all elected officials of all parties to actively oppose the closure of both of the care homes..

Closing the facilities will be detrimental to existing and future residents, carers and families but is also another attempt to undermine the NHS. The closure of NHS facilities is an attack on our vital public services and is designed to further open the door to ‘for-profit’ health care. Health Care must be based on need not on the ability to pay. We stand in solidarity with all who oppose this trajectory and support all efforts defend the NHS, defend jobs and keep William Street and Rectory Field care homes open.

PB4P Derry