Mum’s fears for son in care axe

Amanda Smith and son Nathan Regan-Smith
Amanda Smith and son Nathan Regan-Smith
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A DISABLED mother fears she will lose her son if social services cut her care.

Amanda Smith, 39, of Caunce Street, central Blackpool, has had help to care for her nine-year-old son Nathan since having her left leg amputated below the knee more than three years ago.

But Blackpool Council has now informed her the number of hours of care will be reduced because they believe there are times when she can cope on her own.

Ms Smith said: “I’m scared if they take the care away, they’ll take my son off me. I’m petrified.

“I’ve got no family network here. I genuinely need the help but I’m getting it taken away. Nobody is listening.”

Ms Smith was born with a condition called talipes, which means she had no heels and her feet were in the wrong position. By the time she was 16, she had endured 15 different operations. Then, tragically, her left ankle collapsed five years ago.

She added: “I ended up having my leg amputated below the knee. I tried wearing a prosthesis but I kept getting infections.

“I can’t walk, I have an electric wheelchair but I can’t always sit on it because I have to have my stump elevated otherwise I’m in agony. The pain in the bottom of my stump is really bad.”

A carer currently visits the family every morning to give Nathan, a pupil at Devonshire Primary School, his breakfast and get him ready for school.

There are also visits on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays when Ms Smith’s carer cleans her house and helps her to shower.

A carer also does Ms Smith’s shopping, picks Nathan up from school and gives him his tea.

But when Ms Smith’s care is cut she will be left with no visits at the weekend, no cleaning visits and no tea time help.

She said: “What happens when I can’t physically get up to pick him up from school?

“When I have a good day I do some cooking but then I’m in twice as much pain the following day.

“I can’t cook a meal every day. I’ve been shopping recently but that’s the first time in seven weeks. Nathan tries to help but he’s only a child.”

Blackpool Council said a review meeting would be held with Ms Smith.

A Blackpool Council spokesman said: “We are very sorry to hear that Ms Smith is unhappy with the proposed changes to her care package.

“In light of these concerns a further review meeting will be arranged with Ms Smith, bringing together her views and those of all the people involved in supporting Ms Smith and her son and discussing all the options available to meet the challenges the family faces.

“Any changes which are made to a care package are subject to review and if there are problems these will be addressed with the service user and the provider.”