Workers launch High Court bid to prevent funding slash

    A group of mental health workers launched a High Court bid to
    stop an organisation’s funding from being cut on the grounds
    that it provides social care rather than health care this week,
    writes Amy Taylor.

    Cardiff Local Health Board say that they are legally required to
    stop giving Riverside Advice, an organisation that helps mentally
    ill people in the city organise their lives and claim benefits,
    money from their health budget.

    It argues that the service falls outside the remit of health
    care and instead counts as social care. It says the service would
    not have been funded in the first place if it had not been for a
    “misinterpretation” of the regulations.

    But Michael Fordham, representing the three workers, told
    Justice Moses, sitting at London’s High Court that the vital
    nature of the advice and help that Riverside Advice provides meant
    that it should be seen as a health care service.

    “There’s a close nexus between the project and the
    protection and promotion of mental health,” he said.
    “The added stress and pressure of losing benefits and income
    and months of uncertainty can lead to a degeneration in mental
    health and they need expert help.”

    The judge reserved his decision on the case and will give his
    ruling later this week.


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