Diary of a Sutton Councillor

Tuesday 24th March 11.30am

Carers Partnership Board

This board is made up of carers and ex-carers; Sutton local authority representatives from the Carers Development Unit; representatives from local NHS trusts; and voluntary sector representatives including our main partners in this area, the Sutton Carers Centre. This means that the board covers the spectrum of service providers, commissioners and users. I chair the board in my relatively neutral capacity as councillor with special interest in carers’ issues.


I do find this a difficult meeting to manage largely because carers interests cover such a broad range of areas, from adult and children’s social services, to health provision, housing, benefits, mental health and across all manner of disabilities. When an item on the agenda is raised the discussion can broaden out considerably, or we can find ourselves going into great detail around a particular service.


It therefore proved to be quite a useful exercise for me to have to prepare a report on the goals & achievements of the Carers Partnership Board both as a basis for our Board’s representatives to take to the Sutton Adult Partnership Board, and also to use to steer our work over the next year. The report was generally accepted by the Board with the addition of ‘improving the uptake of benefits by carers’.


Another item on the agenda which may not have appeared of obvious relevance was the Site Development Policy consultation. Marilynne Burbage had brought this to our attention because of the preferred options suggested for the Sutton Hospital site. Marilynne had noticed that the Sutton & Merton PCT had only indicated a need to keep 0.5 hectares for health provision. As this was a lot less than the area currently covered by the mental health inpatients wards, and with concerns that the Mental Health Trust had plans to move inpatient facilities away from this site there was concern that should the preferred option be accepted as it is it would preclude any extensive health provision development on this site. If there were no plans to provide inpatient beds in the borough of Sutton then this would impact on carers’ access to relatives who were patients on mental health wards. The board agreed to submit a response to the consultation highlighting this matter, and also in respect of similar concerns about health provision on the Carshalton War Memorial site.


Members of the board agreed to review the bereavement information to go onto the Sutton Council website to ensure that it covered all the areas relevant for carers and feedback their comments.


As usual the meeting overran and we didn’t get around to addressing all the items on the agenda.


May 12, 2009 - Posted by | Meeting

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