The past week or so has been busy for the Beds in the Orchard team, but mainly in preparing for Christmas rather than campaigning for beds. The Christmas trees are up, the lights are shining and the presents mostly wrapped. Of course the main present that we want is the return of the beds to women.
So, is this going to happen?
Yes and sooner than The Harbour opening. This is a big change from a couple of weeks ago when the Trust looked into whether they could swing the beds back and reported that it wasn't possible. Now the information is that the CCG has said that they need to be returned to female before The Harbour opens and they are working hard for that to happen.
This is good news and there has been a lot of excitement among the team because someone from LCFT said that it would be by Christmas, but as usual there is a difference between the message via the official route and the information given to someone involved with the Campaign by other LCFT staff.
One person had a member of LCFT on speakerphone so they and their friend heard that person tell them both that the beds would definitely be open by Christmas. The Official line from LCFT via our spokesperson is that its only a Maybe by Christmas as there are a lot of things that need doing and that the person from LCFT hadn't said it was for definite.
So who is right?
Two people heard the man from LCFT say it was for definite. The same man has said via the official line that they didn't say it was for definite. We think there's a bit of ass covering going on there to be honest. One person getting the wrong end of the stick, fine, but two. Big. Fat. HMMMMMMM. So while we agree that no one misheard what they were told over the phone, it just wasn't true and shouldn't have been said.
However this is not the important stuff!
The important thing is that they are actually trying to reopen the beds to women by Christmas. They can't guarantee it as it will take a lot for this to happen and sometimes these things just aren't possible.
So via our OFFICIAL LINE.
- They are trying to close down the beds to men in order to reopen them to women.
- They have people who are in private beds at the moment at its important to get them back into Trust Beds.
- They are looking into ways to reduce male admissions.
- They have managed a small reduction at the Orchard to free up a bed.
- They are doing what they can but can't guarantee it, so hopes should not be got up.
This smells of success!
BUT While it looks like we're going to be successful, we're not going to have any grand announcements until we have them back for sure and we know they won't be returned to men as soon as we turn our backs.
A lot of work has gone into this campaign. Some people have joined in close to the end and their input has been great, but this has been a long slog since October when we first heard about the closure. Its taken hard work, time, lots of investigation, FOI requests, lots of legal advice and communication with the press. We're bloody proud of what we've achieved, but there's no way that we're going to announce a victory before we've actually won for real.
So as we are down to the last bit of the whole campaign, we are going to hand over the keys to Philippa, the campaign spokesperson and founder along with Lisa and Roz, the managers and bloody scary women to deal with the Trust, so we can get on with enjoying Christmas and not get over excited before we actually get the beds back.
They'll keep you all updated, Officially updated and hopefully the news will be good and soon.
MERRY CHRISTMAS TO YOU ALL!