The care industry has expressed disappointment that George Osborne did not address pressing issues in social care during his Budget speech.
Professor Martin Green, chief executive of Care England said: “We commend the Chancellor for looking to the long term in aspects of his budget, but it is dangerous for him to ignore social care.
“The care sector employs more people than the Red Army and when the National Living Wage begins to bite it is all the more important that the sector is recognised, resourced and supported. More cuts to local authorities’ budgets only leaves those in receipt of care in a more fragile position, one that providers are no longer able to support.”
Jeremy Hughes, chief executive of Alzheimer’s Society, said: “Today’s budget simply hasn’t delivered for people with dementia and their carers, many of whom rely on social care for essential support such as help with eating and dressing. With no mention of any new money for social care, and the threat of £3.5 billion further spending cuts to come, the system remains in crisis.
“The allowed two per cent increase for council tax still leaves a chronic shortfall of at least £1.4 billion. Dark days are ahead as care providers pull out of the market and the NHS is engulfed by rising demand. As a result, since 2010, half a million of the most vulnerable people have been left to fend for themselves. The Chancellor must use the upcoming efficiency review to protect local government.”
The Voluntary Organisations Disability Group (VODG), representing leading not for profit disability organisations was also disappointed.
Dr Rhidian Hughes said: “We have reached a perfect storm. Demand is rising. Unmet need is rising. Welfare reforms and cuts to services are leaving fewer and fewer people eligible for essential care and support services. Yet the Chancellor’s budget statement said nothing about these pressing matters. The absence of social care was an obvious and concerning void in today’s budget.”