Parents of long term residents at a special needs facility in Kerry are calling for plans for its closure to be reversed.
The newly formed Parents and Relatives of St Mary of the Angels in Beaufort claim that plans by St John of God Services and the HSE to move all 76 residents off campus into the community, only came to light by accident at a recent meeting
The parents’ group claims the plan to move residents, some of whom have been there for over 30 years and have severe intellectual disabilities, was not communicated to them properly and will be extremely disruptive to the residents.
In a report seen by Radio Kerry, St John of God proposes to decongregate long term residents from Beaufort to houses across the community in Kerry, as part of the HSE’s national policy introduced in 2011.
The plan is to move 76 people into 24 bungalow style houses and four apartments.
St. Brendan’s and St Fidelis Units which are on campus are to be prioritised for closure as the level of investment required to bring this accommodation to compliance with HIQA standards has been deemed not economically viable.
Responding to some of the concerns put to it, St John of God said it’s undertaking the move as part of HSE policy and acknowledges that a number of families are fearful of community living.
The organisation has committed to working closely with families as the move takes place.