Who will be impacted by these proposals?

    People registered to attend day support services will be impacted.  Our data indicates that before the pandemic the number of people registered to attend each service was as follows:

    • 17 people for Physical Disability day service.
    • 21 people for Riverside day service.
    • 52 people for Pritchard’s Road day service.
    • 25 people for Russia Lane day service.
    • 34 people for Sundial day service.
    • 99 people for Sonali Gardens day service.
    • 49 people for Create day service.

    Staff working in day services will be impacted. There is a total of 20 members of staff currently working in Physical Disability, Riverside and Pritchard’s Road day services.  A separate consultation is being carried out with staff on these proposals.

    How will these changes impact on the services I receive?

    If you normally attend Riverside Physical Disability or Pritchard’s Road day services; you will not be able to attend the service or get support in that way after 1 April 2021.  You will be able to get different support that meets your needs.  We want to hear from and work with you to design what this different support looks like.

    If you attend another day service, you may not see an immediate change on 1 April 2021.  However, there are likely to be changes to all day support in future, in line with the proposals in this document.  We want to hear from and work with you to design what these changes could be.

    Why are the biggest changes being made to Riverside, Physical Disability and Pritchard’s Road day services?

    In early 2020 and prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, Cabinet agreed to a proposal to merge the Physical Disability day service with Riverside day service.  It should be noted that the Physical Disability day service building is due to be demolished within an estimated 12-18 months due to redevelopment plans.

    Since that time, the financial pressures facing the council have increased and we want to make changes to day support because of the reasons described earlier in this consultation pack.  

    We are proposing to close Riverside and Physical Disability day services because the number of people attending them before the Covid-19 pandemic started was low, and because we think we can develop alternative support that meets the needs of people who were using them.  

    We are proposing to close Pritchard’s Road day service because the number of people going before the Covid-19 pandemic started was low and because there is a wide range of other day support available. This means there is a strong likelihood of there being alternative provision that meets the needs and interests of current service users and carers. 

    When will any changes come into effect?

    We are proposing that Riverside, Physical Disability and Pritchard’s Road day services do not reopen and formally close on 31 March 2021.

    We will work with all day support users and carers to design new day support over the coming months and will agree a date that this will start.

    Changes to commissioned day support for older people (currently Sonali Gardens and Sundial day services) will be in place with effect from January 2022. These changes are a result of commissioning and contract arrangements.

    What do people think about day support?

    Feedback over the years from service users and carers on their experiences of day services in centres is largely really positive, and it is clear that many people value this support. A number of people have strong ties to the service having attended for a number of years.  

    A research team at Toynbee Hall spoke to the following between July and September 2020:

    • 114 older people and people with a physical disability who use day services
    • 26 carers
    • 18 stakeholders and 12 day service staff members 

    The aim of the work was to co-design a new, future day support service for older people and people with a physical disability.  The findings of the work have informed this proposal and will be used to design the future of day support. A report with more detail on this work is available on our website or by emailing spp@towerhamlets.gov.uk 

    How long does the consultation last and who will make the final decision?

    This consultation will run from Monday 9 November to Monday 4 January 2021.

    The council will review all responses before considering the proposals set out.

    The final decision will be shared on Let’s talk Tower Hamlets – the council’s online consultation and engagement platform.

    How was this proposal agreed?

    In early 2020, the council agreed the proposal to merge Physical Disability day service with Riverside day service.

    We are now proposing to make more changes due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and the increased financial pressures we are facing.

    In summer 2020, we wrote to all those receiving day support and other forms of community-based adult social care to consult on proposed changes to charges for care.  One of the questions asked in the consultation was if people had ideas on how adult social care could make alternative savings. The main themes in the responses related to reviewing staff salaries and office costs, tackling fraud and commercialisation.  Staff terms and conditions have recently been reviewed, and the other suggestions are being progressed. 

    What other day support options are there in Tower Hamlets?

    A table on all day support options is included in the consultation information pack.