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Bromley special needs children 'likened to rubbish' by councillors
PARENTS of deaf, blind and autistic children are outraged after their loved ones were ‘likened to rubbish’ by councillors considering outsourcing the council’s special needs services.
Anxious families of these youngsters who benefit from the care provided by Bromley Council attended the latest education policy development and scrutiny (PDS) committee meeting to let their views be known.
And they were shocked at what they heard.
Teresa Ivings has been going to the Griffins Centre in Lovibonds Avenue, Orpington, for support ever since fostering her son 20 months ago.
She says her baby, who was born deaf and blind, gets a lot of benefits from their visits to the sensory room and fears what will happen if the service is changed.
The 47-year-old, from Bromley, said: "At the meeting councillors asked if outsourcing had been rolled out before and they said it had worked well in other areas before like refuse collection and council tax collection.
"I find it pretty shocking that you can compare sensory care for children with special needs on the same level as collecting your rubbish."
And Tara Hilson, 40, whose nine-year-old daughter is profoundly deaf, said: "It’s hard enough to have a child with an extra need and you should not have to fight."
Mrs Hilson, of Mead Way, West Wickham, added: "It seems like the children do not matter, especially as they were likened to rubbish."
A Bromley Council spokeswoman said: "At its meeting the PDS committee was asked to recommend to the Executive that it should allow council officers to market test certain specific education services including primary and secondary hearing impairment provision.
"If Executive approval is achieved on October 16, it will only trigger a process whereby alternative delivery models can be investigated and compared with the current approach.
"Resulting recommendations will then be consulted upon prior to any subsequent decisions being taken."
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