CEO of St Aidan’s Services reiterates that they are doing what they can to reopen north Wexford respite service

St Aidan's CEO Eimear Mannion.

Amy LewisGorey Guardian

In a brief response to a series of questions surrounding the closure of the respite services, CEO of St Aidan’s Eimear Mannion reiterated that the management is doing everything it can to restore the service within the 12-week timeframe.

On Monday, Ms Mannion agreed to respond to a series of follow-up questions following a previous statement circulated by the St Aidan’s management earlier this month.

Among a list of questions, she was asked why the planned closure was not communicated to service users and caregivers earlier, and for more information on the steps taken to prevent the closure.

In a previous statement made by St Aidan’s regarding the closure, it was noted that there are currently 16 vacancies within the services, and more information was sought on Monday from Ms Mannion regarding what these vacancies are and how long they have been open.

Ms Mannion was also asked for more information about the previous closures and the reasons behind them.

Information was also requested regarding whether caregivers who wish to secure respite for after the 12-week closure period are able to do so, while it was also queried whether the 12-week timeline for reopening still is a reasonable estimate or whether it was expected to occur earlier or later than originally anticipated.

In her response on Tuesday morning, Ms Mannion said:

“We have communicated directly with families on all matters regarding the regrettable and unavoidable closure of Respite Services at St Aidan’s. We would dearly wish to have the resources in place to open this much needed service immediately, as we fully understand the importance of the facility for all of the families involved. Regrettably, as already outlined, we do not have the staffing to run a safe and supportive service.

We are making every possible effort, through active recruitment, to have the service back in operation within the timescale as already announced.

We will continue to communicate directly with families, including the provision of updates on the present situation, on our efforts to restore the service.”