An ‘exercise in gobbledegook’ was the verdict of SDLP councillors in Limavady after a meeting with Department of Health officials to discuss the future of Thackeray Place care home in Limavady.
SDLP Councillors Michael Coyle and Gerry Mullan, Limavady’s Mayor, were in attendance at the meeting this morning (Monday, August 19, 2013), where a crowd gathered to protest any planned closure of the local care home.
The local councillors issued a joint statement after the morning, which called on the DUP to put pressure on Minister Edwin Poots to keep the local home open. The statement read: “While this could be described as a very informative meeting about the future of Care in the Community nothing was said which addressed the future of Thackeray Place which was the reason why we attended the meeting in the first place and why there remains a high level of concern about the intentions of the Minister Edwin Poots.
“The case for the retention of Thackeray Place is crystal clear and should not be confused by whatever long-term plans the Western Health and Social Services Trust has for the overall development of care in the community.
“The residents are highly significant stakeholders in the process but appear to be the last people to be told if they are to remain at Thackeray Place. The employees too are equal stakeholders in an enterprise which is a showcase for care for those people who are residents there.
“We were told that the officials would be guarded in what they say because of the publicity the meeting had received and that concerns us because we want all discussions to be open, up front and honest particularly to those who are very concerned about the future of Thackeray Place.
“Our political colleagues in the DUP have an important part to play in the immediate future because it is a DUP Minister who will make the final decision and there can be no mixed message, no duplicity and no fancy footwork by local DUP politicians who have only one choice and that is to back the residents and staff at this important facility.”