East Sussex social services department is not serving people
well, a joint review has reported, writes Clare
Many older people and some vulnerable adults have poor access to
social services with long waits for assessments and for service
delivery, the report says. There is insufficient support in the
community and many of the services offered are traditional and
expensive, it adds.
The authority’s failure to manage its resources in a
strategic and planned way has meant many adult service users now
experience delayed discharge from hospitals, poor customer care,
and some other poor quality services.
However, children’s services are improving. The authority
has addressed weaknesses by strengthening the management of social
work services, prioritising services for looked after children, and
introducing a new assessment framework for children in need.
Director of joint reviews John Bolton said: “The service offered
to older people in East Sussex is falling short of an unacceptable
standard. In particular, older people are waiting too long for a
service, both in hospital and the community.”
“Community care services need urgent development and
improvement. We are very pleased that the county has recognised
this group as its priority, and that steps are being taken to put
the situation right,” he added.
Keith Glazier, the council’s lead cabinet member for social
services, said the authority accepted the recommendations: “The
report’s findings underline many of the concerns we already
“Working with the new senior management team in social services,
we are starting to turn around the unacceptable situation we
inherited. Care for our elderly in this county is a top priority,”