Denton and Reddish MP, Andrew Gwynne, has today raised fresh concerns over the state of social care provision as fresh figures reveal the true scale of cuts to local authority funding.
Seven years of Tory neglect and under investment have left the social care sector in crisis. The Tories’ decision to take £4.6 billion from local authority funding since 2010 has left a funding gap in social care that will reach £2.1 billion by 2019/20 as shown by research by the independent charity, The Kings Fund.
These cuts have left little more than a threadbare safety net of social care support with 400,000 fewer people getting publicly funded social care compared to 2010. Invariably it is families who are being left to pick up the pieces. A report by Age UK published in July found the families of one in four care home residents whose care is supposed to be free – representing one in ten of all care home residents – has been forced to pay ‘top up fees’ that can run into thousands each year.
Sadly, the funding crisis is being felt locally across both Stockport and Tameside as both carry the burden for huge reductions in external funding for councils compared to 2010/11 levels. Since that period, Stockport has suffered a 41.6 percentage fall in external funding, while Tameside has seen a 41.8 percentage fall in its external funding.
As cuts continue, services inevitably suffer with a report by the Care Quality Commission in July finding that one in four social care services are now failing on safety grounds.
Andrew Gwynne said:
“Social care is in crisis, and it is decisions made in Downing Street that have brought us to this point. Theresa May must stop turning a blind eye to the problems in social care and address the funding crisis urgently.
“Since 2010 local authorities’ social care budgets have been cut by £4.6 billion and 400,000 fewer people are now receiving publicly funded social care. Across Tameside and Stockport we have seen funding cuts above 40 per cent, which has meant vulnerable people in our community are not getting the care and support they need.
“Labour has warned time and again of the growing crisis in social care. Theresa May must act now to make sure that councils have the money to provide quality social care for all those who need it.”