Chance to learn about direct payments at open day

Merton residents will have an opportunity to learn all about direct payments including the experience of others at an open day at The Hub in Morden on Friday 30 January.

The direct payments scheme aims to give most people who currently receive home care or attend a day centre that has been arranged by the council, the freedom to choose and manage how they receive their care.

Residents who use the direct payments scheme are able to decide how best their needs are met, choose who comes into their home to help them or what they want to do during the day, and pay for services out of the money allocated to them by the council.

Council staff from the direct payments and welfare benefits team will be available to answer questions and will be joined by other direct payments users who will be available to share their experiences of the scheme so far.

Other organisations available on the day to offer free information and advice include the HMRC (Tax Office), Department for Work and Pensions, Direct Payments Forum and Robin Murray Neill from the Care Services Improvement Partnership.

Cabinet member for housing, adult care and health, Councillor Linda Scott, says: “We want to encourage people to think about the way they get their care services. Direct payments give people more choice, and the freedom to decide on what they think is the best way to meet their individual needs.”

“This is a great opportunity for anyone interested in learning more about direct payments and how it has already helped other residents gain more independence to come and talk to the council’s enthusiastic and helpful team.”

The open day will be held between 11am and 3pm at The Hub, Bishopsford Road, Morden, Surrey, SM4 6BF (Mitcham and Tooting Football Club).

Notes to editors:
· Direct payments are money payments given to people to purchase their own services, instead of having them arranged by Merton community care services. Residents currently receiving home care or attending a day centre that has been arranged by social services, could be eligible to receive direct payments.
· For more information about the direct payments scheme residents can contact the Direct Payments Team on 020 8545 3632.


Press Contact:
Kim Parker
Communications Officer
London Borough of Merton
020 8545 3827