Morgan Vine, Head of Policy and Influencing at Independent Age, said:
“We welcome the fact that, after years of delay, the Government is finally taking action on social care. However, the focus on the cap misses so many of the issues people who need social care are facing. We want a social care system that enables people to live with dignity and purpose, and to achieve this, bold reform is needed now.
“We need the government to bring in a package of measures, not only to address years of disastrous underfunding, but also to fix the dire levels of understaffing and offer a sustainable vision for the future of the social care system.
“We are concerned by the lack of a clear plan for how social care will be reformed. The Government has made no firm commitments on how the new money will be spent, and it is disappointing that social care is once again being treated as an afterthought. Today’s announcement raises many questions about the broader ambition of this reform and we will have to wait for a White Paper later this year to know how these will be answered.
We want a social care system that enables people to live with dignity and purpose, and to achieve this, bold reform is needed now.
“To ‘Build Back Better’ is an admirable ambition, but vague slogans won’t ensure people receive the care and support they need. We need real action to reform social care so that it is there for everyone who needs it, regardless of age or background.
“We need proposals that not only fairly spread the financial burden of catastrophic costs but also clarify and simplify what people are entitled to and improve access so everyone with care needs has them met. It is vital that a clear workforce strategy is developed so professional carers are paid a decent wage. In addition, we need better support for our essential family carers.
“It’s clear there are no quick or cheap fixes, and small tweaks won’t suffice. The Government must meet the moment and deliver bold reforms to ensure that those in later life and their families can live with dignity, choice and purpose."