Unite the union is spearheading a protest tomorrow (November 3) against the closure of Southampton city council’s two remaining residential care homes.
The Labour-controlled city council wants to shut the Holcroft House and Glen Lee homes by April 2020 or sooner, which will mean about 50 elderly residents losing their homes and the jobs of 80 care staff being put under threat.
The demonstration will be outside the Labour party’s south east regional conference which is being held at the Solent University Spark Building on East Park Terrace, Southampton SO14 0YN from 10am.
Unite Southampton branch secretary Mark Wood said, “We are hoping for an excellent turn-out from the residents and their relatives, the care workers and the wider Southampton community to show the strength of feeling about this callous proposal.
“We are urging people to make their views known about the need to retain these two homes during the consultation process which began on 24 October,” he added. “It can’t be right that the elderly residents have to be uprooted from their homes at their advanced time of life.
“We appreciate that Tory government austerity cuts have left the council with difficult decisions to make, but these closures would only save £1.3 million from 2020/21, according to the council’s own figures.
“We have had talks with the council, making the point that the savings could be made elsewhere in the budget, such as the plans to spend £1m on solar powered compactor bins. We believe the council needs to reconfigure its priorities.”
It is understood that there is capacity for 34 residents in each home, but that the council has now stopped allowing new admissions. Holcroft House is currently almost full and Glen Lee is at about 50 per cent capacity.