Councillor issues statement on home care contract

Published: 6 December 2018

The council’s cabinet member for adult social care and health Cllr Paul Ellis has issued the following statement: “We have just completed a procurement exercise to commission homecare services over the next ten years in a contract worth more than £100million. This has been a detailed and exhaustive process to ensure that our residents receive high quality home care support and that local taxpayers get the best deal for their money.

“Among the groups that bid for the contract was Tooting-based Mushkil Aasaan. Unfortunately their bid was disqualified because it was incomplete and non-compliant.

"Let me be clear. This is not a case of the council choosing not to renew a contract with Mushkil Aasaan. Instead it is the simple fact that under the very strict EU legislation governing these types of large scale public sector contracts, their bid could not legally go forward.

“After being notified of this, Mushkil Aasaan very regrettably chose to launch a high profile public campaign to have these rules set aside. They sought special treatment and to be allowed to re-submit a revised bid. Not only would this have been illegal, it would have been grossly unfair to the other contract bidders and would have breached the procurement rules that are designed to ensure a transparent and level playing field for all those taking part.

“We have always said we are happy to work with Mushkil Aasaan and that we value the work they do. Although their bid had to be disqualified, we are quite sure they will continue to thrive and continue to win contracts and support vulnerable people not just in Wandsworth but also in the other boroughs where they operate.

“They will also be able to continue to offer their services to their existing clients, and new ones too, via the Direct Payments system which gives people the choice of who provides their home care while we provide them with the budgets to pay for it.

“We are sure too that given their substantial assets of around £6.5m, which includes some £2.4m in cash at the bank, that the group is very well placed to continue its activities and build on its already very successful and profitable business model.”