Cllr Janet Burgess, Executive Member for Health and Social Care, blogs about the importance of social care services in Islington
Today, the Communities and Local Government Select Committee is hearing evidence on social care. This is a vital issue for Islington, where over 8,000 residents receive care support at home.
By 2020, the Tory Government will have cut the Council’s budget by 70 per cent in ten years, making it harder to meet the needs of an ageing population. The Tories are spending less on social care now than Labour in 2010, despite the significant increase in demand.
From 2010 to 2017, expenditure on adult social care in Islington will have suffered an 11.6% real terms cut. This threatens the most vulnerable and undermines the NHS.
We cannot let the Tories’ irresponsible social care cuts affect people’s ability to live independently, which is why Islington Council has protected frontline services in social care.
With the high cost of living in Islington and as a Living Wage Employer, it is right that Islington was the first Council to pay the London Living Wage to care home workers, including covering carers’ travel time.
Islington was also one of the first two Councils to co-sign UNISON’s Ethical Care Charter, becoming the first council to ban poverty wages and axe 15 minute care visits for service users.
Carers are often the unsung heroes of local authority social services. I am proud of the vital work they do and the Council’s record on protecting frontline services in the face of damaging Tory cuts. However, we will continue to call on Government to fund this service properly so it can meet demand.
Pictured – Cllr Janet Burgess, Executive Member for Health and Social Care