Vulnerable support services to be slashed

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Warwickshire County Council is set to make almost £4million of cuts to a host of services for homeless and disabled people and young offenders.

The Conservative cabinet this week approved recommendations to go ahead with a restructuring of its housing- related support services (HRS) and to reorganise services to save millions of pounds.

Although it is inevitable that we will stop funding some services; how we provide HRS services will be different in the future

Warwickshire County Council cabinet report

It is proposed to stop specialist funding for gypsy and travellers, for homeless people and families with support needs, for young and adult offenders. Spending will be cut by 73 per cent, from just under £3 million to £786,000.

Services for people with learning disabilities and mental illnesses will be cut by 51 per cent.

The plans will see a reduction in spending from £8.6 million to £4.875 million by 2018 in what the council has put down to budget cut from central government.

Recommendations were made by the overview and scrutiny committee, which deputy leader Alan Cockburn said had been carefully considered and taken into consideration.

A council report states: “The specific budget for HRS services has been protected from significant reduction to date.

“However, the challenging financial landscape and the requirements of the Care Act 2014, notwithstanding the recent amendments announced by Government, mean that the council can no longer continue to commission and fund these discretionary services in the same way.

“Although it is inevitable that we will stop funding some services; how we provide HRS services will be different in the future.”

The recommendations were passed at cabinet on Tuesday, and will be adopted unless called in by the Labour group in opposition.

The county council has no obligation to provide the discretionary housing-related support services and since 2009, have complete control over how money is spent.