• #BetterPay4SocialCare – more committed than ever

    Philippa Stannard, Head of Communications and Fundraising


    Philippa Stannard – Head of Fundraising and Communications, reports on our event at H M Treasury this week, and our presence at the Conservative Party Conference next month.

    #BetterPay4SocialCare is a partnership of 28 social care organisations; most of us are providers desperately wanting to pay our frontline care workers what they deserve.  How can we pay care workers a minimum of the Real Living Wage as a starting salary, when local authorities don’t get enough funds from central government to pass on to us?

    We started our petition https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/betterpay4socialcare  calling on Government to ensure local authorities receive additional funding to ensure care workers receive a minimum of the Real Living Wage.

    On Tuesday 21st September we went to H M Treasury to deliver the petition, but staff refused to receive the petition, even though there were numerous emails confirming our petition hand-over.

    Why wouldn’t H M Treasury accept our petition, signed by nearly 10,000 people, when they knew we were coming? Are they really not interested in a dialogue about #BetterPay4SocialCare?

    You will see from our video of Kate Allen, our CE, that we will not be defeated and we will not go quietly!

    We see this as an opportunity to keep the petition open – so please sign and share and let’s get the numbers up.

    Kate and myself will represent the #BetterPay4SocialCare coalition at the Conservative Party Conference and have been given the opportunity to engage with Conservative MPs. Wearing our #BetterPay4SocialCare t-shirts, we will ask them how they justify a lack of funds to local authorities to pass on to their local adult social care providers.

    The Government says the amount of money local authorities give local care providers is not a matter for them. This isn’t right.  We are working at maximum efficiency and are as lean as we can be, and yet we can only pay the National Living Wage.

    We created this infographic to illustrate this. Careworker calculations showing how much funding needed for a living wage The hourly rates paid to us by local authorities to provide support – and incidentally, these rates vary widely – is not enough to pay social care workers the Real Living Wage, when recruitment, training, development and well-being, management, HR, finance and core costs are factored.

    Talented, caring and committed staff are leaving the social care sector, forcing providers like us to incur huge recruitment costs and pay high agency staff rates, in order to keep going. We have invested a lot of money on specialist training, only for people to leave.  Added to this, the impending 1.5% National Insurance increase will be used to support the NHS before it helps improve social care; meanwhile it is the nation’s lowest paid workers who will feel the brunt of this increase the most.

    We want to know how the Conservatives can possibly think local care provider non-profits are receiving adequate funds.

    We will endeavour to hand the petition signed by thousands to a Conservative MP at the conference. The meeting will be live streamed, and we will publicise the link.

    We will also be submitting the following question to Helen Hayes MP and Liz Kendall MP, at the Labour Party Conference next Thursday: How can social care provides pay care workers a minimum of the Real Living Wage as a starting salary, when local authorities don’t get enough funds from central government to pass on to us? What would Labour would do it differently?

    Thank you to everyone who has signed and supported this petition; we will do everything we can to make the Government listen.

    Abi Cowley

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