Liam Payne / Rita Ora: For YouiTunesAmazon

Liam Payne / Rita Ora: For YouiTunesAmazon

Mixed reaction to social care transport charge increase in North Yorkshire

Elderly

Published at 9:30am 14th May 2019.

North Yorkshire County Council has received a mixed reaction after lessening the impact of a sharp increase in charges for lifeline transport services for elderly and disabled people. 

  • The authority wants to raise fees for travel to places such as day centres from £2.70 a day to £7.50 a journey
  • After a consultation, it says the rise would be phased in and capped at £30 a week
  • A range of bodies, including Age UK and Healthwatch North Yorkshire were asked for their views as part of the consultation

North Yorkshire County Council’s executive member for adult social care and health integration Councillor Michael Harrison said the proposals to raise fees for travel to places such as day centres from £2.70 a day to £7.50 a journey would be phased in and capped at £30 a week.

Cllr Harrison said the authority had listened to the views of service users and their families who told a consultation the proposed fees increase was unreasonable, would impact on people on low incomes and may lead to people stopping using services, thereby increasing social isolation.

Neverthless, he said while the authority’s Tory administration was dedicated to supporting adult social care as much as possible, the council had other important commitments, such as to children and road users, and was also facing further budget cuts.

However, he said it was important that a fair balance was struck, as while the authority was spending £2.2m annually on transport for social care users, it was receiving just £124,000 in contributions. He said the proposals would add a further £200,000 in contributions.

Ahead of the council’s health and adult services executive members committee considering the proposals, Cllr Harrison said the average cost of travel to a social care service using transport provided by the county council was more than £18 per journey due to the specialist care provided on board transport.

He said:

“It is a high cost, but these services are a lifeline, they are extremely important to the end user.

“There is a huge gulf in the true cost of the service and what people are paying. We will continue to provide the services and subsidise it heavily, so it is extremely good value for money, but is a bit more realistic.”

A range of bodies, including Age UK North Yorkshire and Darlington and Healthwatch North Yorkshire were asked for their views as part of the consultation.

Nigel Ayre, Healthwatch North Yorkshire’s operations manager, said transport and access to services across England’s largest county was one of the biggest issues raised with us by members of the public.

He said:

“While we appreciate the difficult situation local authorities find themselves in it is important that any decisions taken do not have adverse consequences elsewhere in the system.

“If people are unable to access key services this could have a detrimental impact on their physical and mental wellbeing which could result in more costly care further down the line.

“It is a positive step that North Yorkshire County Council have looked to cap the costs but this policy if implemented its impact will need to be carefully monitored.”

Simon Davidson, chief executive officer of Age UK North Yorkshire and Darlington said the charity recognised “the stark reality that money is not available to councils to subsidise services” as they have done.

He added:

“The fact that North Yorkshire County Council has consulted service users is a good thing. Difficult decisions are necessary.”

Email Icon

Sign up for exclusive news, competitions and offers.
Proper Local News updates from Stray FM

Newer article

Teams wanted for ‘It’s a Knockout’ to raise funds for Harrogate NHS

Health: Teams will go head to head at Ashville College next month.

Older article

The hearing aid that lets you choose what you hear

Health: "Technology that turns up the volume of life"

Top articles

Ivor Novello Awards: Richard Ashcroft, The 1975, Mariah Carey and Wiley among winners

National: Richard Ashcroft, The 1975, Wiley and Mariah Carey were among the winners honoured at this year's Ivor Novello Awards.

Geoffrey Rush: Oscar-winning actor awarded record £1.5m damages in defamation case

World: Geoffrey Rush is set to receive the largest ever damages payout to a single person in Australia's history following a defamation case against a newspaper publisher and journalist. 

Toronto Raptors have fought back to level series with Milwaukee Bucks - how have they done so?

Sport: Down 2-0 in the Eastern Conference Finals to the Milwaukee Bucks, it looked as though the Toronto Raptors had another painful, unavoidable postseason collapse coming their way. Now, though, it seems not.

Ivor Novello Awards: Richard Ashcroft, The 1975, Mariah Carey and Wiley among winners

Showbiz: Richard Ashcroft, The 1975, Wiley and Mariah Carey were among the winners honoured at this year's Ivor Novello Awards.

NEW Toy Story 4 trailer

Family: Our favourite toys are back and are off on a new adventure!

WATCH: 43 Minutes of Queen in the 70s

70s: The band's team have put together highlights of the their early career including some iconic performances.

Did you bet on this 'Dark Horse'?

70s On This Day: George Harrison launched his own record label

You're being asked to Bake for Heroes

Charity Hub: TV chef is encouraging you join in!

Bonkers Bingo is back in town!

Food and Drink: The popular event returns to Harrogate.

Welcome to Yorkshire’s canal garden cruises to gold

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: It's been recognised at this year's Chelsea Flower Show

Top Party Dresses for the Festive Season

Christmas: Local Blogger, the Harrogate Girl, picks the best frocks, gowns and outfits for the big Christmas parties of 2017.

"It's a fantastic place": Harrogate cancer centre celebrates major milestone

Health: The Sir Robert Ogden Macmillan Centre at Harrogate District Hospital is marking its five year anniversary.

Stray FM celebrates BEST EVER audience figures

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: More of you are listening for longer as we celebrate our 25th birthday

Delve into deliciousness at Mother Shiptons Inn

Test pages: We sent Stray FM's James Stanley to try out the new menu at Mother Shipton's Inn Knaresborough.

Tour de Yorkshire host venues confirmed

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: There'll be no re-run of this year's memorable Tour de France stage finish in Harrogate.

North Yorkshire districts among best places to live in UK

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: Three parts of North Yorkshire have been named in the top ten places to live in the UK.

Poll

Bank holidays - are there too many this time of year?