Cllr Olivia Rowley, cabinet member for children and young people.
Due to budget constraints and in a bid to provide better service, Wakefield Council plans to engage private companies to run its Home Based Breaks service. The council runs a support service which helps vulnerable disabled children in the district.
The plans to outsource this service come in the wake of a budget cut to its Home Based Breaks service of about £500,000. By this service, the council employs specially trained staff who take care of and visit disabled children as a respite for parents.
“We cannot continue providing the service in the same way. There are more families than ever needing our support and we have been forced to reduce our budget due to the cuts imposed by the government,” said Cllr Olivia Rowley, cabinet member for children and young people.
With 6 permanent members of staff, the service supports more than 130 children around the district.
“At the moment we have children and young people waiting to access the service,” said Cllr Rowley who quickly added, “If we change the way we provide Home Based Breaks by using external providers it will mean that those who need it will have to have better access to these services.”
She assured families in Wakefield that the service would not be interrupted as the council would ensure the outsourced firms engaged appropriately trained staff. She also committed the council to be in consultation with parents throughout the process.