Service users and carers braved near freezing conditions in Petersfield yesterday in order to attend a consultation event, organised by the Personalisation Expert Panel, on Hampshire Adult Services’ proposals to extend charging to all non-residential and short term residential services. This would mean that some services such as day care and support worker services would no longer be free.
In addition, Hampshire Adult Services are consulting on removing the current £440 per week maximum charge cap, taking into account 100 percent of users’ disposable income, rather than the current 95 percent,and the treatment of personal awards.
Over 5000 people are likely to be affected with an average increase of £1500 per year. The proposals could result in additional income to the County Council of between £3.5 and £5 million per year.
Despite the low turnout, due to the weather, there was a lively discussion between service users, carers and representatives from Hampshire Adult Services.
There was wide spread concern regarding how Disability Related Expenses would be calculated in the future and whether users would understand their importance.
There was also much debate around how it would decided whether the services are provided for the user or for the carer. Services for Carers are not chargeable at present.
As you can see from the video below, people found the meeting interesting but were more cynical about whether it would really influence Hampshire’s proposals.
The consultation runs till Friday 14 January and then a report with the recommendations will be presented to Cabinet on 28 February. Any policy changes will be implemented in July 2011.
Find out more on the Contributions Consultation web page.