Page last updated at 15:28 GMT, Friday, 6 November 2009

Separate care centres could close

Day care centres which provide services solely for people with learning disabilities in Northamptonshire could be closed over the next three years.

Northamptonshire County Council wants to provide specialist services within existing community buildings rather than having separate institutions.

The resource centres would be open to the whole community for a range of activities, the council said.

The council cabinet is due to discuss the issue on Tuesday.

If the strategy is agreed, the centres will gradually be developed by the county council in partnership with other organisations.

'Independent living'

The council said current day centre buildings would become community resource units, but those which are not suitable for development would be closed.

Many centres are now underused due to the increasing take-up of services and activities elsewhere, the council said.

Robin Brown, cabinet member for adult social care, said the council had found that many people with learning disabilities had already chosen to do other things rather than visit a traditional day care centre.

"The community resource centres will mean support is available for people with learning disabilities in their local communities, in accessible buildings and not just during the day, but evenings and weekends as well.

"They will help to make sure people are doing the activities they want to do, living independent lives and making their own choices."

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