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CASH-STRAPPED SOCIAL SERVICES ARE CALLING ON CHARITIES

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Charities are complaining that they are being asked to do the work of local authority social services, BBC Radio Fo...
Charities are complaining that they are being asked to do the work of local authority social services, BBC Radio Four's Today programme reported this morning.

Mike Carter, chairman of the Association of Charity Officers, told the programme: 'Local authorities traditionally have the role of providing disabled people with equipment and adaptations to their home and with helping people in residential care homes. Our survey has found that increasingly charities are being called upon to meet these needs.'

Today reported on a case in Hampshire, where an elderly woman who applied to Hampshire CC social services for mobility equipment was told no funding was available and she should approach a charity.

Sandy Bruce-Lockhart, chairman of the Local Government Association, told the programme the funding situation for social services had become very difficult.

'Hampshire, like over half the social services authorities in the country, had an increase in funding of 2 per cent, but at the same time there was a 5.5 per cent increased demand for extra social care because there are so many more elderly people,' he said.

Lord Bruce-Lockhart said that the leader of Hampshire CC, Ken Thornburgh, wrote to the chancellor at the beginning of June to say that in future Hampshire could only give adult care to people classified with critical needs.

In England alone, social services need an extra£1bn a year, as recommended by the Wanless report, he said.

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