Social care spending still £600m lower than ten years ago

In his first speech as Prime Minister, Boris Johnson promised to ‘fix the crisis in social care once and for all’.

James McKay
7 September 2020
extra tax to fund social care

Spending has only increased in one area of England.

Annual adult social care spending in England is still £600m lower than in 2010, according to new analysis published today by the TUC.

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The analysis finds that in 112 of the 150 responsible local authorities, social care spending per head of the population is still below 2010.

Spending per head is 8% below the level in 2010 for England overall with regional reductions ranging from 18% in London, to 5% in the South East, East Midlands, and East of England.

The South West of England is the only region to have increased its funding, with an additional £3 per capita.

The pledge.

In his first speech as Prime Minister, Boris Johnson promised to “fix the crisis in social care once and for all”.

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In July 2019, Mr Johnson said: My job is to protect you, or your parents, or grandparents, from the fear of having to sell your home to pay for the costs of care. We will fix the crisis in social care once and for all with a clear plan we have prepared to give every older person the dignity and security they deserve.”

Healthcare leaders last month called on Mr. Johnson to honor is pledge. 

Today’s TUC report, Fixing social care: better quality services and jobs, sets out why the UK does not have a high-quality social care system, and how to improve it for those who use it, and those who work in it.

The report includes call for a new funding model, fair pay and conditions for workers, a national social care forum, and a universal service that is free at the point of care.

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The TUC has also suggested that with unemployment levels rising, the sector could be a source of much-needed new jobs.

A broken system.

TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said: “When the country needed them, social care workers stepped up. Care workers looked after older and disabled people in the midst of a pandemic, often without the right PPE, and often for low wages and no sick pay.

“Now it’s time to fix the broken system. Social care is badly underfunded. Pay and conditions for care workers are dreadful. And families can’t be sure of high-quality, affordable care when a family member needs it.

“As we face mass unemployment, ministers should act to unlock the 120,000 existing social care vacancies right now. And they should put investment in social care at the heart of our national recovery plan.

“Social care jobs should be decent jobs on fair pay, at the heart of every community. The TUC’s plan sets out how a full funding settlement for social care would work. Ministers can’t spend another decade hiding from the social care crisis.”

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