Social work and health charging policy updated

ANGUS Council’s social work and health is to make its non-residential charging policy more equal, the committee agreed at a meeting on Thursday.

Under the changes, which amend the policy agreed in February, the amount of savings or capital held by people aged 65 and over, and disregarded when assessing entitlement, will rise from £6,000 to £10,000 in line with guidance from the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA).

Housing support, personal care and domestic assistance will now be provided free for up to six weeks, for all those newly-assessed, as part of an enablement process. All those assessed as requiring an ongoing service will be charged on a scale according to their ability to pay.

In addition, a free housing support service - which was available for certain groups including drug and alcohol service users, ex-offenders, those subject to domestic violence, young vulnerable people, refugees and single homeless - will now become part of the same process and will only be free for up to six weeks.

The convener of social work and health, Councillor Alison Andrews, said: “We are making this amendment to the current non-residential charging policy in a further move to make it more equitable for all service users.

“This removes the present exemption from charges for specific groups and delivers free short-term housing support, personal care and domestic assistance for everyone for up to six weeks as part of an enablement process.”

The committee also noted that the policy document outlining new charges is being made available to members of the public and a simplified guide has been produced for staff and service users.