Tories have missed the chance to tackle the social care crisis | Stephen Morgan MP

LAST week the government had the opportunity to present a credible, progressive response to one of the greatest challenges this generation faces, the social care crisis.

Thursday, 16th September 2021, 11:16 am
Updated Thursday, 16th September 2021, 11:17 am
Looking forward to a world in which all NHS, social care and frontline workers can thrive in easier circumstances

It has taken more than two years for the prime minister to find a solution after promising to present plans the day he took office. So he’s had more than enough time to prepare. However, instead of meeting the challenge and providing a response that the crisis demands, he ducked it.

When it comes to social care, for many, it’s personal. This is about services for our loved ones. Our friends. Our neighbours.

It was the lack of social care available for my grandad that was one of the reasons I put myself forward for public office. The barriers to access affordable social care for people like him were unacceptable then and now.

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Meanwhile, the government’s attempt to make its tax rise fairer has fallen at the first hurdle – with just £600m of the £12bn annual total being levied on profits from dividends. Hardworking families and businesses are left to shoulder the vast majority of the burden, paying 20 times this amount.

Under the prime minister’s plan many will still have to sell their homes to afford the cost of care. For example, someone with £186k in assets including their home facing large costs because they have to go into care, would have to pay £86k. And that’s before living costs.

The government can’t even say when and if it can clear the NHS backlog. This means we won’t know when this money will even be spent on social care. This is the third tax rise on working families from the Conservatives in recent months, and we are soon to be faced with a hat-trick of broken manifesto promises from them.

The fairest way to pay for social care is through progressive taxation, not a rise in national insurance that is morally and economically backward

Portsmouth and the wider country have for too long needed a clear, long-term plan that is serious about fixing the social care crisis quickly, not one that kicks the can down the road.

A message from the editor, Mark Waldron.

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