Council’s ‘month-long’ adaptation delays criticised by care group

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A council in Norfolk has been accused of missing targets to install independent living equipment, such as stairlifts, ramps and wet-rooms, in disabled people’s homes.

According to Care for Carers, a local disability support group, Great Yarmouth Borough Council has failed to meet the 240 day target to install equipment in people’s homes.

In the last half of 2018/19, the council missed targets for the disabled facilities grant (DFG)-funded work, the group’s founder said.

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It took on average 280 days to complete all work requested in Q3 of 2018/19, according to a KPI report.

In Q4 it took Great Yarmouth Borough Council 249 days to finish the work. Staffing issues are reported to be one of the reasons for the delays.

Peter Rowley, who founded Care for Carers, told a local newspaper that it is unfair that people are waiting to have adaptations made to their homes.

“For a lot of people being able to remain independent and live at home is really important to them,” he told the Great Yarmouth Mercury. “To know the council is missing its targets by more than a month is shocking.”

But Great Yarmouth Borough Council said in a statement that its performance was well within the deadline of 18 months – set by Norfolk County Council – to complete work.

It said: “At all times the council seeks to minimise the time required to complete an adaptation to ensure customers have their needs met as quickly as possible.

“The pace of completions is subject to contractor availability and, for the very largest works, to an individual tender process, although the council provides a housing improvement agency, Safe at Home, which helps people through the process much more swiftly by offering a contractor framework.”

Tags : adaptationdfgdisabled facilities grant
Joe Peskett

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