11 November 2020: Autism care provider, Autism at Kingwood who support autistic people, has launched a national campaign for better pay for all social care keyworkers, including over 250 front line care workers that they employ.
The campaign focuses on an online petition, asking the public to call on government to ensure social care workers receive the Real Living Wage – £9.50 per hour, as many are not receiving this leaving them in financial hardship. The public are being asked to support the campaign by signing the online petitionhttps://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/betterpay4socialcare
which they hope to present to the Prime Minister.
The campaign has been embraced by other care providers and they have now started a collaborative effort to campaign – https://www.betterpay4socialcare.org.
According to The Select Committee’s Health and Social Welfare report on Social care: Funding and Workforce it finds over 20% of the country’s 1.52m social care workers are paid only the National Living Wage. 1 in 5 care workers under the age of 25 are paid less than this. The proportion of care workers paid on or above the Real Living Wage has decreased significantly from 25% in September 2012 to just over 10% in March 2019.
Kate Allen, Autism at Kingwood CEO, said: “Care providers like us have held a critical role in keeping the country and some of its most vulnerable people safe. We are used to working within extreme financial constraints, and are experts in efficiencies and doing more for less.
Yet after years of responding to financial pressures whilst continuing to not only meet needs but drive up quality, have resulted in there being ‘no fat left to trim’.
As we progress through 2020 and with the increasing uncertainty of Covid-19, there has been no increase in government funding to give a pay increase to social care staff – despite them literally placing their lives at risk to fulfil their role to the charity and society.
Our response to the crisis must match our values as a country and our hopes for a more equal and compassionate society.”