For immediate use: 8 March 2017
Chancellor offers ‘sticking plaster’ on social care crisis
Britain’s biggest pensioner organisation, the National Pensioners Convention has described the additional £2bn on social care in England announced in today’s Budget as a ‘sticking plaster’ on the crisis that the service is currently facing.
Dot Gibson, NPC general secretary said: “For many older people and their families who are struggling with the confusing social care system, the extra funding announced today will be seen as little more than a sticking plaster on the crisis. The additional £2bn from the Chancellor won’t reverse the £5bn cut that the service has suffered since 2010, it won’t give services to the 1.2 million people who have been rationed out of the system and it won’t ease the burden on millions of unpaid older carers who are working 24/7 to look after their loved ones. The promise of a Green Paper is clearly an admission by the government that they haven’t got a clue how to solve the long-term funding crisis facing social care, and it will be years before anything serious gets done. In the meantime, local councils will struggle to meet rising demands and self-funders will face rising care home bills. No other part of the health service is funded by individuals and their families, rather than by society as a whole. It’s time for a tax-funded social care system that’s fair, shares the cost and risk across everyone and gives dignity to those who need looking after in their later years.”