Call for halt to privatisation of home care service

As GMB predicts bleak future for Hammersmith residents

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The GMB union is predicting that the new administration of Hammersmith and Fulham Council is about to embark on a widespread privatisation of services in the Borough.

Following meetings with the Council and the Social Services Committee over the issue of the home care service, GMB - Britain's General Union - believes the Council is determined to privatise all public services.

The GMB claim privatisation will mean cuts in the level of service, cuts in employees pay and conditions and the loss of well established, experienced and skilled local workforces.

The Hammersmith Home Care Service currently services 1,690 people and over the years has been the subject of constant scrutiny and cost effectiveness evaluation. GMB say that Councils begin with cuts and end up dismantling the services that the Hammersmith community currently enjoy.

Paul Hayes, GMB Organiser said, "My fears have been fully justified. The privatisation of Hammersmith's Home Care Service will be the thin end of the wedge and every other public service provided to local residents will be gone well within the life of this Tory administration. Even if local residents regret their choice of Tory council earlier this yearby the time the next council elections come round there will be no services left to save."

Other boroughs which have been under Conservative control for a longer period such as neighbouring Wandsworth claim to have introduced widespread privatisation to reduce cost without compromising service quality.

October 18, 2006