Oppose closure of Tower Hamlets day centres

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The Council is in effect putting the most vulnerable members of society at risk for a small short term financial gain and is the wrong priority says GMB London

GMB London, the union for council workers and care staff, is joining with service users to oppose Tower Hamlets Council's announcement that they propose to close the Riverside, Day Opportunities and Pritchard Roads Day Centres on 31st March 2021. This will result in 24 dedicated and skilled staff being made redundant as well as a loss of the services for vulnerable local residents.

These Day Centres provide vital support and activities for vulnerable adults with a range of disabilities and health conditions and they help to prevent social isolation and provide family members with well needed respite from their caring duties.

GMB London along with the other trade unions are organising a Virtual Public Meeting for the 9th of December, to encourage local people to take part in the consultation process and contact their Councillor regarding the closures.

GMB London is asking the public to take part in the following:

Anna Lee GMB Regional Organiser said “ The Council has given COVID as being one of the reasons for closing Pritchard’s Road. However we hear every day of people whose mental health has been affected by the pandemic as well as a consensus that mental health issues are on the rise as a direct result of the pandemic. Pritchard’s Road Centre provides Adults with severe and enduring mental health problems provides structure and support to the most vulnerable residents of Tower Hamlets.

The Councils proposal to close Day Opportunities is short sighted and will have adverse consequences in the long term for every service user and the community as a whole.  Taking away the only frontline service for physically disabled people is detrimental as those who may need this specialized resource in the future will slip through the net and the current users will not receive the specialized input they require to continue build their independence”

By closing these Day Centre Tower Hamlets Council is in effect putting the most vulnerable members of society at risk for a small short term financial gain. This is the wrong priority. They are not taking into account the knock on effect of closure which will be loneliness, depression, isolation and people having greater health needs on the whole if left with nothing to make their day to day lives purposeful and meaningful”

GMB member Halim stated ‘I have been managing Riverside for 11 years now, this centre means so much to me. The people who attend need us they have nowhere else to go apart from come to the centre. We are like their second family.

Closing they centre will impact me personally, how am I going to pay for my bills, mortgage?  I have two children I have to put food on the table for them. The council really did not think this through before making this proposal. How can you make someone jobless in this current climate it makes me angry and disappointed."


Contact Anna Lee 07870 176720 or press office 07921 289880