York & North Yorkshire

North Yorkshire County Council defends special needs cut

Adults with learning disabilities in North Yorkshire face isolation and mental health issues due to recent cuts, a charity has claimed.

Speak Up Now North Yorkshire (Sunny) said a £3m cut in the county's adult services budget was "disgusting".

North Yorkshire County Council said services for adults with special needs were being protected despite cuts.

Improvements to day and respite care for adults costing £7.7m were still being made, the council said.

Sunny, which does not receive council funding, opened a day centre in 2011.

'Lonely' people

Janette Finney, who established the charity three years ago, said many homes and care centres were being forced to cut social activities to find savings.

"There are going to be an awful lot of mental health issues I think because many of these people are going to be lonely with nowhere to go to socialise," said Mrs Finney.

The charity Mencap has also warned cuts to services were isolating people with learning disabilities.

North Yorkshire County Council said the bulk of savings had been found through efficiencies.

It said services were being changed in line with national policy to give adults with disabilities more choice.

"The county council is moving away from the traditional role of doing things for people, towards supporting people to do things for themselves," a spokesperson said.

The Department of Health said it was aware council spending on social care was under pressure.

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