Search

Hornchurch carer blows whistle on bad treatment of staff and poor care of elderly

08:27 27 May 2014

Care worker Mary Bell

Care worker Mary Bell

Archant

A senior care worker has ­revealed the “disgusting” treatment of zero-hour contract staff and the poor quality of care elderly clients receive as a result.

Elderly clients are left waiting due to workers not being able to get to jobs on time. Picture: ShutterstockElderly clients are left waiting due to workers not being able to get to jobs on time. Picture: Shutterstock

Mary Bell, 66, of Hornchurch Road, Hornchurch, has been a care worker for a private sector agency in Havering for 10 years, visiting elderly clients in their homes.

After years of discontent, she has now decided to whistle-blow on the “impossible” expectations imposed on staff, particularly new starters, by companies across the borough, who she claims put profits before clients’ needs.

They include:

■ No time between visits, ­resulting in a lack in quality of care as carers rush from “house to house” and work late

■ Having to administer medication without suitable training or knowledge

■ Earnings of less than minimum wage, as most agencies pay no petrol money and staff have to use their own phone

■ Three to five day induction courses for new starters before being sent to deal with high-need patients – leading to new starters quitting within three months

■ Bullying tactics by agencies due to the zero-hour contracts of the staff, who worry they will not be given more work.

She believes carers are “frightened out of their lives”. “They have got to make it easier for them,” she said.

“They give medication after reading notes, but they don’t know the clients needs.

“Some have to get the bus from Rainham to Collier Row. It’s impossible. There’s no time to do the job properly.

“The poor people are sitting there waiting.

“We used to have to do 23 minute jobs for every half-hour so we had time to get to the next one, but now we don’t.”

Mary was suspended for five months with pay in 2011 over allegations of “failing to follow a reasonable line management instruction not to visit a client” and “crossing professional boundaries by continually contacting social services and local press about concerns” regarding the same client.

Another carer, Linda Seddon, 57, of Romford, claims the situation is the worst it has been in her 35 years in the job.

“When we deal with someone who has dementia we need to take our time,” she said.

“We used to look after patients, we never gave medication.

“Now we do all that. I’d say between five and 10 per cent of people leave within three months.”

Latest Romford News Stories

Pupils at Redden Court School in Romford celebrating GCSE results

The headteacher and students at Redden Court School are celebrating their “best ever” GCSE results this morning.

12:53

Students and staff have been celebrating at St Edward’s Church of England School after they recorder a 15 per cent increase in A* to C grades.

Students at Raphael School this morning

The headteacher of Raphael School is celebrating as his students achieved 100 per cent A* to C grades at GCSE, including English and maths.

11:52
Police want to speak to this man

A man is being sought after a 24-year-old was punched in the face by a stranger on the 174 bus.

10:50
A computer generated image of how a street in the Dovers Corner development may look. Image: Persimmon Homes

Plans to build 396 homes on an industrial estate are due to be considered by the council’s committee tonight.

Jumping for joy

After the excitement of last week’s A-level results day, it’s time for teenagers across the borough to experience the same nerve-wracking feelings as they collect their GCSE results.

Leslie Coates.

Police are appealing for the public’s help in finding a vulnerable pensioner from Rush Green.

07:00
BHS, located in the Liberty Shopping Centre.

Shoppers have been making the most of closing down sales as the town’s BHS store prepares to close its doors for the final time.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

News from your area

WW100

Click on the banner above for full coverage of the centenary commemorations of the outbreak of the First World War.

Competitions

You could win £15,000 to spend on either their mortgage or a deposit towards the home of their dreams

Wouldn’t it be lovely to have a period of time when you simply don’t have to worry about finding the money each month to pay your mortgage? When you don’t have to put money aside from your monthly income, or worry about having to afford other essential outgoings?

Which book character do you share cleaning habits with?

Whether you have more in common with put-upon Cinderella, emotionally turbulent Jane Eyre, or easily distracted Mole, you’re sure to appreciate that one lucky winner will receive four sessions of free cleaning. Enter our quiz for your chance to win. All runners up will get £10 off their first clean when making a repeat booking.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now