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Time for Political Silence on Social Care to End Says Care Leader

Social care is one of the biggest challenges the new government will face – but it was almost completely absent from the General Election campaign says Ian Pritchard CEO of Alternative Futures Group (AFG).

Ian said: “While the media reported betting scandals, hypothetical tax and who had Sky TV as a child – the 1.2 million people working in the social care sector and the hundreds of thousands they support – were offered very little from either main party.”

“As the chief executive of a charity that supports people with learning disabilities this was very disappointing to see – but not surprising.”

“For too long now the funding of adult social care has been an elephant in the room in national politics that has never been satisfactorily addressed.”

“And within the sector itself there remains significant disparities in funding.”

“In particular, services for elderly care continue to be much better funded than services for adults with disabilities.”

AFG have called for equality of funding for adults with a learning disability who continue to be forgotten.

Manifesto promises

In its manifesto Labour commits to ensuring independent, prosperous lives for all by addressing inconsistent care standards and staff shortages. They promise local delivery, a ‘home first’ principle and endorse a Fair Pay Agreement in adult social care to ensure fair pay, terms and training standards.

Mental health

In the case of mental health – Labour said that they aimed to modernise mental health laws which is something that AFG and the wider sector has been crying out for some time.

Ian added: “Their pledge to invest £2.6billion in mental health services is of course welcome.”

“However, the central funding model for mental health services means funding fails to flow down to frontline providers including AFG and others.”

“It’s clear that the new Government has some understanding of the desperate need for reform in mental health and for better funding in the social care sector – we can only hope that they fully grasp how much needs to be done and will take appropriate and speedy action.”

“We would be happy to meet with ministers looking to get a complete view of the issues facing them with social care and the Mental Health Act and to give them the benefit of our years of experience.”

“Equally, if the new government fails to act on its promises to support the vital services which underpin a fair and flourishing society it will fall to all of us to hold them accountable.”