Issued by City of York Council
York’s warden call and telecare customers will pay new charges for the services from September.
Warden Call provides a 24 hour monitoring and response service to customers in York. The telecare service provides a 24 monitoring and response service for customers who, in addition to the standard warden call service, have at least one piece of telecare equipment – such as fall detectors – installed.
A new charging structure was agreed last week (18 July) at a decision session for the Cabinet Member for Health, Housing and Adult Social Care following a consultation on the proposals earlier in the year.
The majority of customers who responded to the consultation recognised that the charges needed to increase to reduce the disparity between the cost of the service and the charges paid.
From 1 September warden call customers will pay £5 per week for the service, with telecare customers paying £7, compared to the existing flat rate of £4.25 per week for both services.
The service charge has only increased by 35p in the last seven years, and not at all in the last three.
The services will remain free to customers who are in receipt of Council Tax assistance and / or housing benefit.
Customers will also be charged £35 for a replacement pendant if their alarm is lost (equivalent to 50 per cent of the replacement cost). The arrangements for two customers living at the same address will also change.
Current practice is to charge only one customer living at an address, even if two customers living at the address require the service. Under the new arrangements, the second customer will receive the service at the standard weekly cost, minus £2.
The basic services charges will increase further from 1 April 2014, to £7 for warden call customers and £10 for telecare customers, putting the charges in line with those of other local authorities.
Councillor Tracey Simpson Laing, Cabinet member for Health, Housing and Adult Social Services, City of York Council, said: “I’d like to thank everyone who took part in the consultation and am pleased that customers understand that we need to increase the charges in line with service costs.
“We recognise that these are difficult financial times for many of our customers and hope that staggering the increase will make budgeting easier. Increasing the charges now will ensure that we can continue to provide a high quality and cost effective service in the future.”
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