We have been making careful plans to ensure our services and support can continue throughout the pandemic, where practically possible, and where this can be done safely. Given that we provide support to some of the most vulnerable people in the city, our attention is very much focused on maintaining the health, safety and well-being of all the people who use our services.
Our staff are doing everything they can to ensure the highest standards of hygiene are maintained to minimise the possibility of infection between staff and the people who use our services.
We continue to closely monitor the latest government advice and are working with colleagues in Leeds City Council and the NHS to plan for any impact there may be to services. Please follow the government advice about what to do if you or someone you care for has been in contact with someone who has symptoms of COVID-19. The current advice is that, if you live together in the same household, you should self-isolate for 14 days. Given the vulnerabilities of the people we support, I would also advise that you contact NHS 111.
Given the rise in the number of people contracting coronavirus across the country, combined with the particular vulnerabilities of the people we support (and those of a number of family carers themselves), we took the difficult decision to suspend all our day services with effect from Wednesday, 18th March. We are of the view that the risk of many people with such vulnerabilities being in one place was too great.
Although we have closed the day services at the present point in time, we are keen to try to support family carers as best we can. Therefore, prior to taking this decision, staff contacted family carers to talk about how we could best help you whilst the day service buildings are closed. We asked you to let us know if you are likely to need support from Aspire staff in your own home whilst your loved one cannot attend their day service. We are providing family carers with the support they requested plus we are trying to speak to you on a regular basis to see how you are and to check if your support needs have changed.
If you need to contact a manager, the phone numbers are:
The team at Carers Leeds can also be contacted on 0113 380 4300 if you would like support from them.
We are constantly reviewing the situation within our Respite Services. Many families are currently making the decision to keep their loved ones at home whilst the incidents of coronavirus across the country are rising. We are therefore trying to work with partner organisations to offer a resource that is as flexible as possible. We will keep in close contact with families about their planned respite stays and endeavour to continue to provide this service where practically possible and safe to do so.
Supported Living Services:
We are putting all our available staffing resources into keeping our Supported Living Services running. To minimise the risk of the spread of Coronavirus we are reviewing our visitor protocol on a regular basis, in order to keep everyone safe.
Protocol for family members visiting people who are being supported by Aspire staff during the Coronavirus pandemic.
The Carers Leeds advice line is 0113 380 4300
It and is open:
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday – 9am to 4:30pm
Wednesdays – 8:00am to 6:30pm.
You can also e-mail the advice line for support during these hours at: email@example.com
Resources to support families/carers of people with learning disabilities through the coronavirus restrictions produced by the Learning Disability Professional Senate
Information for carers of people who access day services
Closure of day services
Updated visitor guidance
The Government has updated rules that say, anyone unable to work due to caring responsibilities arising from COVID-19, can be placed on furlough. However, we believe key workers are not included in this.
Update for family carers now we are in a further period of lockdown across the country.
The government has published updated guidance for unpaid carers who are caring for someone who has a learning disability or autism to help them keep the person safe and to protect their own wellbeing.
The government has published guidance aimed at people who receive support via direct payments through personal budgets and personal health budgets, and local authorities, clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) and providers who support and deliver care via direct payments.
The guidance for people eligible for Covid-19 testing has been updated and has now been opened up to include informal carers (and volunteers).
Update from Andy Rawnsley, Chief Executive, as the country moves into Phase 1 of easing lockdown restrictions.