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More Than Three Quarters Of UK Adults Say They View Social Care As Skilled Work

More than three quarters (78%) of UK adults say they would feel proud to have a family member working in the social care sector, according to new YouGov research, commissioned by the UK’s largest charity care provider, MHA. In the survey of more than 2,000 people, 81% of respondents also said they view social care as a skilled job, and 71% believe staff in care homes should be paid the same as healthcare assistants in the NHS.

This support is not translating into people joining the profession, however, with 152,000 vacancies reported across social care in 2022/23.

MHA believes that a lack of professionalisation or an ability for people to see a structured and fairly rewarded career path is preventing people from working in the sector. This is particularly true of the younger generation, who are the least likely to consider a career in social care according to the study.

To encourage people to appreciate the potential of a career in care, MHA is calling on the Government to fund and enable the creation of a Social Care Council – as part of the charity’s wider Fix Care for All campaign. The Council would act as an independent body representing the 1.5 million people working in social care.

As well as examining pay scales, accreditation and training, sector-wide recruitment drives and public perception, the Council would also help more young people to understand the career pathways available to them.

MHA Chief Executive, Sam Monaghan, said: “With more people relying on social care in later life and less people entering the social care workforce – the sector’s skills crisis is hiding in plain sight. We know the general public have huge respect for the work that social care staff do, but unless the Government commits to doing more to incentivise and reward these roles, we simply won’t have a strong enough talent pipeline to replace older colleagues when they retire.

“One of the biggest issues we need to tackle is the recognition, value and professionalisation of social care, and we believe that an independent body that advocates for the people that care for and protect the most vulnerable in our society is long overdue.”

MHA is encouraging members of the public to get involved in the Fix Care For All campaign by signing its petition here, or engaging with their local MPs.

 

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