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Salford - two-faced attack on mental health
Manchester mental health workers on strike, photo Christian Bunke
Salford council still aims to 'reorganise' mental health services, despite acknowledging the "strong opposition" of service users.
Salford's mental health service users, the "United Service Users Committee" (USUC) have waged a massive campaign, backed by Salford Against Cuts and Salford City Unison, to demand the plans are dropped.
Steve Cullen of USUC says: "We remain totally opposed to the reorganisation and will keep lobbying elected mayor Ian Stewart and the councillors.
"The fight is not over yet but we're seriously concerned that some people with mental health issues will get into arrears on the bedroom tax or not understand the letters sent out.
Some people could take their own lives. One service user did so after he queried when his Drop-In centre would re-open.
He was met with the response that the authorities: "don't know and hope it doesn't open again". In turn he must have thought he had been kicked out of the Drop-Ins, which he had used for some years, which was like a little community or family network.
Now Salford city council are to put community care workers' role out to tender from April 2014. If community care workers are privatised, we fear we won't get the same level of support and some people won't get any support.
Greater Manchester West NHS and the council are also to put Drop-Ins in local community shared buildings, which many service users won't go into.
Peter Connor, Assistant Mayor for Adult Social Services, made this decision. When we met him last year he told us: "they should not be closing these drop-ins, if anything they should open more of them." This shows how two-faced he really is!"
In The Socialist 8 May 2013:
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