East Lothian Council

Supporting the most vulnerable in our communities

Published Wednesday 14th February 18

Adult education classes

East Lothian Council continues to prioritise the provision of high quality and sustainable services for the most vulnerable people in our communities.

The council’s 2018/19 budget includes additional investment of £224,000 in operational adult wellbeing staff.

It seeks to generate additional income from adult social care services – which is the subject of an ongoing consultation.

The budget also includes £444,000 of additional investment in children’s wellbeing which will be used to meet a range of operational pressures and see capacity increase to respond to growing needs in our communities.  

Councillor Fiona O’Donnell, Cabinet Spokesperson for Health and Social Care, said:

“We have a strong track record of providing high quality services for the most vulnerable people in East Lothian.

“There are a number of new Scottish Government obligations to meet and increased demand for services, which is contributing to the mounting financial challenges in front of the council.

“As Elected Members, we have faced difficult choices: reduce and close services, or raise money to protect those services. I would rather do neither but that simply isn’t an option.

“That’s why we our budget seeks to prioritise providing high quality and sustainable services to the most vulnerable people in our communities.

“We are therefore reviewing charges for adult social care services. While we would prefer to maintain charges at lower levels, moving towards national averages will help ensure that services are provided at the maximum possible level.

“At the same time,

we are committed to improvements and innovation in our care services, to ensure we make the best use of tax payers’ money, and develop services which will meet the needs and aspirations of generations to come.”

The council’s consultation on charging for adult social care services runs until 22 February. A series of open meetings for service users, carers and third sector partners has recently been taking place.

The key findings to date are:

  • 78% agree (Strongly agree and tend to agree combined) that increasing charges or introducing charges is acceptable if this means services can continue to be delivered.
  • 80% agree that charges for social care services in East Lothian should be in line with the Scottish average.
  • 69% agree that those who can afford to should pay a bit more for the social care services they receive.
  • 96% agree that help should be available to make sure people paying for services receive the financial support they are entitled to.

All the options for services to be charged for received support from a majority of respondents apart from charges for day care/ resource centres (48% agreed).

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