This blog entry is a response from members of the Sustainable Care team to the newly published report from the House of Lords Economics Affairs Committee.

In its new report, Employment and COVID-19: time for a new deal‘, published today 14 Dec 2020 the UK Parliament’s House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee calls on the Government to:

  • significantly expand the number of care workers,
  • do this by increasing funding in the social care sector,
  • stipulate that this should be used to raise careworkers’ wages and improve training and conditions.

Our research in the Sustainable Care programme strongly supports this conclusion.

  • We have previously drawn attention to continuing high vacancy levels in social care work – a deeply and increasingly worrying issue. Our research also shows that, without urgent action, this problem will worsen in 2021, as the full impact of our withdrawal from the European Union is felt.
  • We are dismayed that the Government has provided NO response to the Committee’s 2019 report, ‘Social care funding: time to end a national scandal. (In Sep. 2019, the Secretary of State for Health & Social Care told the Committee it ‘would be premature to do so before setting out (its own) proposals’).
  • We urge the Government and the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to prioritise this vital issue, on which the wellbeing and welfare of millions of people depends. 
  • Care workers need urgent improvements in their pay, working conditions and access to training and progression, as the report makes very clear.
  • Millions of older and disabled people, carers and families rely on our nation’s care workers every day to support them to manage in daily life.

After all that care workers have contributed – and endured  – in 2020, when the nation has applauded their courage, commitment and kindness in caring for others during the COVID-pandemic, THIS PROBLEM CAN WAIT NO LONGER.

Professor Sue Yeandle
Professor Jon Glasby
Professor Catherine Needham
Dr Diane Burns
Dr Matt Bennett
Dr Kate Hamblin
Professor Majella Kilkey

Sustainable Care: connecting people and systems

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