Lambeth Shad, a charity providing 24-hour
support and housing assistance for disabled people, has been given
a four-week reprieve and a glimmer of hope.
In September 2001, Lambeth Council rejected
the charity’s request for a 24 per cent increase in fee levels for
its clients, and gave the charity three months’ notice and an
agreement to pay the higher rate for that period of time “in order
to support them through the wind-down period”.
Lambeth Shad was due to have ceased providing
care by this week, but the deadline has now been extended to the
end of February to allow the council time to complete its clients’
alternative care plans.
A council spokesperson also confirmed it had
agreed to look at a new business plan drawn up by the charity.
Charity director Isabelle Clement told
Community Care that all six clients – five of whom were Lambeth
residents – were opposed to the change, and that doubts about
Shad’s relevance today had been disproved by independent research
carried out last year.
The council claimed Shad had failed to respond
both to the changes in the care market in recent years and to
concerns about its financial viability, choosing instead to
increase the level and range of care for users “beyond the agreed
care plans and without prior agreement from the council or any
other funder to meet the costs”.
But Clement said Shad was forced to subsidise
care packages because their clients “were not being supported
enough in terms of their other needs”.