Tower Hamlets Council has hit back at critics of its decision to
target a new extra care housing scheme at the Islamic community,
claiming it was responding to health and cultural trends and
national policy, writes Derren Hayes.
The London borough said the 40-bed home, catering specifically
for older people from the Muslim community was needed because a
third of its population is Bangladeshi, and could rise to 70 per
cent in the future. It is thought to be the first council-run
facility of its kind in England.
However, the council confirmed there had been no direct
consultation with the Bangladeshi community over the decision
– although it had held meetings with local residents and
councillors over the development of the scheme.
An advocacy worker from an older people’s charity in Tower
Hamlets who works with Islamic groups said that, given the Islamic
culture of families caring for their elderly relatives at home, she
believed funds would have been better spent improving
culturally-sensitive domiciliary care services in the area.
Liberal Democrat and Conservative politicians argued that the
move was contrary to councils’ remit of promoting