SOUTH Shields MP Emma Lewell-Buck described a shake-up of daycare services for the elderly and disabled in South Tyneside as a “great opportunity” early last year.
At the time, Mrs Lewell-Buck was South Tyneside Council’s lead member for adult social care and support services.
She said: “I don’t see this as shutting down services, rather than developing something new and exciting. It’s not a cost-cutting exercise, but a great opportunity.
“This is not something council officers put together themselves in a room with a piece of paper in front of them.
“We asked the questions ‘What do you want’? and ‘How can we make adult day care services better?’.
“We asked people to help us make it better. We have informed the consultees about our proposals, and not one of those persons has complained about what we are planning.
“We acted on what those people wanted us to do. This is a new way of looking at support for people with learning disabilities.
“It’s a move away from service users just being picked up and taken to the centre, spending the day there, doing some activities and then being taken home.
“It offers them the choice on how they spend their own personal budgets.”