Lots of councils are closing day centres and other social care services to try and save money. They can close services but only if they provide alternatives for people to use. The council cannot simply take a service away if people have an eligible need for that service, because they must meet those needs. They must also consult with service users before they make a decision about closing a day centre, so everyone involved should get to have their say.
If a day centre is closing, find out what other day services are available. There might be lots of things a person can do, but they need to think about what they want to do and make sure all activities meet their needs, as identified in their assessment and care plan. If a person has a personal budget or gets direct payments, make sure they are getting enough money to do the activities they want to do.
It can be daunting if services change, but as long as there are lots of other services for a person to choose from and they are involved and kept informed of the changes, it doesn’t have to be a bad thing. However, if the council does not hold a consultation, leaves a person without any suitable service or is expecting service users to pay a lot more for their services, they can complain. For information on how to complain see the Making a complaint section.
Many people will be affected if a service closes, so they could think about getting together to campaign against the closure. They might be able to get local media involved and this could put pressure on councillors to keep the service open. Visit the Campaigning tips section for some more ideas.