COUNCILS are being urged not to cut care and support services for the elderly, disabled and people with long-term conditions.

Members of the Care Support Alliance, a consortium of more than 60 charities and organisations, are calling on authorities with responsibility for social services across the country not to axe vital services in budget cuts.

It warns in an open letter to Durham and North Yorkshire county councils that further cuts to these services will “condemn many more (people) to a miserable, isolated and often unsafe future.

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“Care and support services help people with basic tasks such as washing, eating and getting out of the house.

“These are not nice-to-have extras but vital for the daily life of so many people.

“Many are already struggling under the strain of cuts to care and support services in their area, and have been pushed into financial hardship, isolation and ill health.

“We, as organisations that support people severely affected by the cuts, are deeply concerned about the anguish caused by lack of social care – we witness the harsh reality every day.”

The letter urges the two authorities to protect frontline services for vulnerable people and urges residents to express their opposition to cuts.

The letter was signed by 39 charity chiefs including Jeremy Hughes, Chief Executive, of the Alzheimer’s Society, Michelle Mitchell, the Charity Director General of Age UK, Mike Adamson, Managing Director of Operations at the British Red Cross, and Ciarán Devane, Chief Executive of Macmillan Cancer Support.