Independent Age response to the Queen’s speech – social care

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Independent Age Chief Executive, Janet Morrison, said:

“We welcome the announcement of a Care and Support Bill in the Queen’s Speech (Wednesday 8 May) as recognition that the government is now to act with purpose to reform social care.

“The details of the bill’s proposals to cap the amount that individuals pay towards their care will be keenly awaited as they will determine whether the bill does genuinely offer an end to the ‘catastrophic cost’ of social care that many ordinary families face. There is a real risk that the fine print of the bill may offer far less protection than it first appears. We also have concerns that the provisions of the bill may be too complex to be easily understood and we strongly support recent calls by the Joint Committee on the Draft Care and Support Bill for a national awareness campaign on the care and support offer.
“We look to government to acknowledge the Committee’s recommendations in legislating for independent financial advice for families of care home residents signing up to a third party top-up or deferred payment agreement. It is essential that the Bill recognises the fundamentally different nature of independent financial advice and how the lack of such advice prevents older people from being able to make informed decisions on how to pay for the care they need.”

“Finally, we call on the government to recognise and acknowledge that there remains an urgent need for adequate investment in social care. Without this, there is a danger that these welcome legislative changes will not produce the urgently-needed level of transformation on the ground for older people using services, their families and carers.”

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