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July 2020
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Autumn Statement: Phillip Hammond says social care is a problem for the next parliament. But the crisis is now.

Matthew Wort

Matthew Wort

Following Philip Hammond’s first (and last) Autumn Statement yesterday, Matthew Wort, Health and Social Care expert and Partner at Anthony Collins Solicitors LLP commented:

“Philip Hammond says social care is a problem for the next parliament, but the crisis is now.

What do you value more, your wi-fi or your relatives and friends who need care and support? This is the question posed to the general public today as Philip Hammond refused to acknowledge social care in his Autumn Statement. While the Government seemed happy to invest in virtual connectivity, dropping business rates for super fast broadband, the sector that relies on personal connection has been ignored.

The Chancellor declared that social care is a “problem for the next parliament” and he couldn’t be more wrong. It is a crisis now, and it is a crisis that needs answers now. Directors of Adult Social Services accept that 1.6 billion was needed to maintain care at current levels, so given that social care providers now also need to find funding for a 30 pence rise in the National Living Wage services look set to only go one way.

By putting its head in the sand, the government sends a worrying signal to the health and social care industry and a confirmation that the government is no longer focused on improving an industry that is relied upon by at least 2 million of the most vulnerable people in our society.

Sadly, this is no surprise, following Prime Minister Theresa May’s failure to mention social care in her 7,000 word Conference speech last month. Not only are the Conservative Party not dealing with the social care time bomb, they’re not even interested.

The sector needs to come together with one voice ahead of the next budget and we all need to make clear what we value more our elderly relatives, those people living with physical or learning disabilities or a faster internet connection?”

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