INVERCLYDE Council is writing to everyone supported by its community alarm service to remind them a charge is being introduced from July this year.
The fee was agreed as part of the 2018/19 council budget decisions. Health and Social Care Convener Councillor Robert Moran said: “One of the proposals was to charge for the community alarm service which has been the case in other local authorities for a number of years.
“After a public consultation and careful consideration it was agreed that a weekly charge of £2.50 would be set. This is lower than in neighbouring council areas and also £1 lower than the cost originally proposed as part of the budget setting.”
The community alarm service is provided to 2,700 people who need extra support to live in their own home. Operating all year round, the alarm connects to a telephone line in the person’s home which can be activated either by pressing the button on the alarm unit or on the pendant worn by the person on their wrist or around their neck. A signal is sent to a monitoring centre where an operator can call emergency services, GP, a family member, friend or mobile responder to help.
Councillor Moran added: “While we would prefer not to charge at all we are being faced with increasingly tough choices to make. The simple fact is we are trying to do more with less money. “We have done all that we can to minimise the cost of the community alarm charge for a number of years and we hope people will continue to use and benefit from the service.”