After the stresses of battling coronavirus, staff and residents need reassurances that services and jobs will be maintained says GMB Union
Vulnerable people across Northern Ireland face an uncertain future as Four Seasons Care Homes look set to sell off all 42 facilitie
In a meeting with three unions, GMB, RCN and Unions, Four Seasons managing director Carol Cousins said the company is seeking bids from interested parties by October 20 – with a protected sale by February 2021.
GMB is now seeking support from communities and politicians to make sure Four Seasons fulfil the moral duty to safeguard residents during the process.
Alan Perry, GMB Organiser, said:
“The announcement is a shock, which will impact on the hundreds of vulnerable elderly people and their families who are already concerned about their loved ones in the midst of the covid-19 crisis.
“The decision to sell off these care homes will also affect the hard-working staff who have put their lives and health in the line.
“At a time when we are all being told to pull together, during the most serious pandemic in our lifetime we didn’t expect this bombshell, which comes just as we approach what looks like a very difficult winter for the NHS.
“We know there is a need for some investment in the company and we have serious worries for staff and residents, as it is possible that some homes are at risk of permanent closure.
“The whole question of care homes being in private hands, rather than part of the NHS, needs to be looked at.
“After the stresses of battling coronavirus for the last nine months, staff and residents need reassurances that services and jobs will be maintained.”