NEWS: Petition to save local HIV charity The Sussex Beacon hits 10,000 signatures

Petition to save local HIV charity The Sussex Beacon hits 10,000 signatures

January 27, 2017

Simon Dowe, CEO of the Sussex Beacon

Over ten thousand people have now signed a petition asking the Government to take action to save local HIV charity, The Sussex Beacon.  Following cuts to the funding it receives from the NHS, the charity may have to cease offering its services, which include a ten bed inpatient unit.

The petition to save The Sussex Beacon is addressed to NHS England and also directly to the Secretary of State for Health, Jeremy Hunt. Charity staff are working alongside local MPs to raise the issue in parliament, in order to raise awareness of the threat the charity faces and the high level of public support it has.

Simon Dowe, the charity’s Chief Executive said, “Since we announced that these funding cuts are threatening our services, we’ve had an outpouring of support, which we’re incredibly grateful for. Service users, colleagues in the health and HIV sectors, MPs and local people have given us their backing as we try and find a way to keep our services open.

“We’re delighted to hit 10,000 signatures on the petition as we feel it demonstrates to Commissioners and the Department of Health how valued we are. If we are forced to close services, not only will it have an impact on some of the most vulnerable people with HIV locally, it will also put significant additional pressure on both health and social care services in Sussex as they try to fill the gap. We’re doing all we can to avoid closing services, while also supporting our service users and staff at this difficult time.”

In September, The Sussex Beacon was rated ‘outstanding’ by the Care Quality Commission. It helps hundreds of HIV sufferers in Sussex every year, and costs over £2 million a year to run, however changes to local commissioning arrangements have led to a reduction in statutory funding. In a statement, the charity said that it is exploring alternative options, including approaching non NHS funding and grant giving bodies, or working in partnership with other organisations.

Petition to save local HIV charity The Sussex Beacon hits 10,000 signatures


Dear friends,

I just signed the petition “Save ‘outstanding’ flagship HIV charity the Sussex Beacon from cuts to services” and wanted to ask if you could add your name too.

This campaign means a lot to me and the more support we can get behind it, the better chance we have of succeeding. You can read more and sign the petition here:

Can you also take a moment to share the petition with others? It’s really easy – all you need to do is forward this email or click these links:

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Thank you!



The Sussex Beacon

What we do

The Sussex Beacon provides specialist care and support for people living with HIV. Our services promote independence and improve health and wellbeing by providing inpatient and outpatient services.

Our services are run from our centre in Brighton where we have a 10-bed inpatient unit, therapy rooms and larger rooms for group work. We also have a landscaped garden for patients and visitors to enjoy all year round. We aim to provide high-quality care and support in a friendly and homely environment.

How we do it

Referrals to our inpatient unit are accepted from health and social care professionals and are mainly funded by the local NHS for people living with HIV in Sussex. Out of area referrals are funded through the individual’s local health or social care provider. Some of our outpatient services can also be accessed by self-referral.

We work in close partnership with other healthcare providers and our patients and clients to make sure that our services remain relevant to the changing needs of people living with HIV.

Our work is funded by statutory bodies and a range of fundraising activities including trusts, events, and trading in our charity shops. Find out more about our funders.

A short film showing interviews with staff and clients about the services on offer.