West Tyrone Sinn Féin -- Building an Ireland of Equals

Sinn Féin welcomes delay of implementation of the new 'rota system' for home care provision in the Derg

Published: 11 December, 2012

Sinn Fein MLA Michaela Boyle, Councillors Ruairí McHugh and Maolíosa McHugh met with Maureen McKeague Manager of Derg Valley Care, on 30th November 2012, to discuss the imminent introduction of a "rota system" to home care provision in the Derg area. It has been argued by Derg Valley Care that the rota system is a necessary requirement to recontracting of caring services and must be implemented by the 14th Dec 2012. Cllr Maolíosa Mc Hugh said; 'During the meeting with Ms Mc Keague Sinn Féin representatives highlighted the concerns of many of the patients to a change in personnel of the carers. Relationships had been built up over a long period of time between the carers and patients and such an adjustment seemed unwarranted. Hours of attendance are to change and in some cases the new hours did not meet the needs of the patients. In addition it is likely there will be an overall loss of hours to the carers, many of whom are part time workers and depend on their current package of hours'. Initially, it was proposed that these changes would be implemented as of Saturday 1st December 2012 but after discussion and the fact that proper consultation had not been carried out by Derg Valley Care, the changes were postponed. Councillor M McHugh continued; 'I was in contact again with Ms Mc Keague on Friday 7th Dec. and she informed me that changes are not to commence as of yet. As public representatives, Sinn Fein requested from Derg Valley Care, that any changes to the delivery of the home care service is postponed until after proper consultation is completed with each and every person who avails of this service. Not only do we request that patients concerns are dealt with sympathetically but that staff concerns are also listen to and the issue with loss of working hours taken on board. Christmas, whilst a time of celebration, can also prove to be a time of great worry and stress for many and adjustments such as these are but an additional burden to an already vulnerable group. Sinn Fein advocates that no such changes if any should be introduced until after the Christmas period'.