I WOULD like to enlighten readers about the personal consequences of the extreme cost-cutting exercises in the Social Services budget in Oxfordshire and the rest of England.

At present, as a single, disabled person living on my own, I receive excellent care from Oxfordshire Social Services, consisting of four essential visits per day, by friendly, efficient and competent carers.

Unfortunately, from now on, all recipients are to be means tested, to ascertain if they have sufficient funds to pay for their own care.

Shortly all council carers will be dismissed by their employers, leaving elderly and disabled service users to the tender mercy of the private care agencies, whose sole purpose is to generate profit by providing a service as cheaply as possible.

I recently had a letter from John Jackson, director for Social and Community Services, stating that the council was committed to “giving people the maximum level of independence and to support people to do as much for themselves as possible and to reduce the need for long-term care”.

But I believe this means the council is absolving itself of all responsibility for adult social care, leaving the disabled and vulnerable to the tender mercies of the private sector.

Finally, I would urge the council to apply to join the London-based ‘unlimited funds club’, whose recent bail-outs include the UK and Irish banking systems, the ‘let’s add Libya to the Afghanistan and Iraq incursion club’, and, that old favourite, the EU, which at present costs the British taxpayer £45m per day.

It is not difficult to imagine how the population of this country would benefit if these funds were placed not into Europe but into our own system, and spent, for example, on assistance with the care for the elderly and disabled.

ALAN PAYNTER, Ock Street, Abingdon