After Salford Council announced in the summer that it was cutting financial support for Lancaster House which gives accommodation and support for the city's homeless men, a petition was signed by 8000 people opposing the move, while an angry protesters marched on the Civic Centre in Swinton (see here).
In August, Salford Council went ahead with its cut but Lancaster House has continued to stay open. Four staff have lost their jobs, with another re-employed on a lesser role…
"The service has lost a lot of highly skilled and much liked support staff and those who remain are going to be pushed to new limits" says David Alum, the service user who led the Save Lancaster House campaign.
"Due to the cuts, there are now only two support workers covering 38 guys, which obviously has a knock-on effect of less time for the support workers to get involved with people" he adds "Also night staff are having to lone work which means a curfew is now in place for residents of 2300, institutionalizing people which is exactly what the Council didn't want. Only time will tell if this new structure can be successful."
While Lancaster House struggles on, we can reveal that, in May, Salford Council paid a bill of £5100 to the Hazeldean Hotel in Kersal for `Support for Homeless', presumably because there weren't enough beds in existing accommodation. Meanwhile, the future of Lancaster House is still unsure…
"There is still no secure future for Lancaster House, but for now it survives and we can only hope that this brilliant service remains in place over the coming months and years" David Allum explains
"I must thank the general public who have joined us on protests, voiced their disgust, signed our petitions and generally rucked with the council" he adds "It really shows how many people support this service…"
See also: Salford Man Set Alight At Victoria Station click here