Date published: 
12 July 2019
Media type: 
Media release
General public

Minister for Aged Care and Senior Australians, Senator Richard Colbeck has expressed deep concern and anger that Earle Haven residents were left as they were yesterday.

“It appears that this incident arose from a contractual dispute between the approved Aged Care provider and a sub-contractor who was providing administrative, nursing, catering and other support services,” Minister Colbeck said.

“It appears that the sub-contractor, without notice, withdrew all services and proceeded to remove equipment from site, leaving the facility unsuitable for residents to occupy.”

“I express my sincere appreciation for the assistance of Queensland Health, local emergency services, and other Aged Care providers who made facilities available to accommodate the residents.”

“We are pleased that all residents have been safely relocated.”

“I also wish to express my appreciation to staff who stayed with residents and alerted emergency services.”

“Our primary concern is for the residents and their families – we will be taking all efforts to ensure they continue to be safe and in good care.”

“I find it simply outrageous that a contract dispute could escalate to the situation that it did.”

“I received a comprehensive briefing on the situation as it was understood last night and have received regular updates from my Department as the situation unfolded.”

“I will be using the full suite of resources available to investigate the circumstances of this matter and I have issued instructions to that effect to my Department last night.”

“Resources are being immediately mobilised to support residents and their families to ensure their safety and wellbeing.”

“I have directed my department to work closely with the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission and Queensland Health to examine the circumstances that led to this terrible situation.”

“I will be looking to bring the full force possible of action onto those who put residents of Earle Haven in such a terrible position – it is simply unacceptable.”