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A deferred £350,000 saving by the effective downsizing of the Hillcrest as a children’s
care home caused arguments in the comhairle meeting today.
Back in February 2016 councillors agreed not to press ahead with the changes until
councillors were satisfied with transitional arrangements.
Councillors today heard a revamp was still being drawn up to “improve” the service
with more effective use of staff.
The number of children using the home has fallen.
The council also wants to build a new, modern facility, possibly at Sandwick, outside
The Hillcrest building would be retained for a period in case it could be used for
But SNP councillor Rae Mackenzie pointed out: “We are putting the cart before the
horse” by voting for the change now without satisfactory arrangements in place.
Cllr Gordon Murray’s motion to delay approving the revamp proposals until more information
was provided later this month.
If councillors were unhappy with the redesign of the service then Hillcrest should
Mr Murray said there “no agreed” model for the proposed arrangements was in place
and it was essential children were in a “safe place.”
Councillors debate children care home service
7 February 2017