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The future of social care and the forthcoming govt green paper

08 March 2018

Yesterday, Think Local Act Personal held a meeting to discuss the future of social care in the light of the Green Paper to be published by the Government in the summer.

Think Local Act Personal (TLAP) is a partnership that promotes personalisation, direct payments and personal budgets in social care.

TLAP heard from Department of Health and Social Care officials.  You can find their presentations here:

Charlotte Bright's presentation

David Nuttall's presentation

At the moment it is planned that the Green Paper will mostly cover social care in relation to older people although there may be some general proposals about the system as a whole.  For younger people there will be a parallel work stream but the exact nature of that is yet to be determined.

A number of people were asked to give their personal perspective, including our deputy CEO, Sue Bott.  Here is what she said.

“What I want from a changed social care system for disabled people is finally moving from dependency to inclusion in our communities and economy as equal citizens.

“I’m pleased to see mention of the Industrial Strategy although only in relation to older people.  I’m rather doubtful that people will live as long or be able to work as long as government seem to be assuming.  I hope the Green Paper is not going to assume that we will all have to work until we drop.

“Why no mention of the Industrial Strategy in relation to younger disabled people.  It took DR UK to point out that disabled people did not figure in the strategy at all.  What we need is for disabled people to be included and to be given the support that enables us to realise our ambitions and be economically active.

“I’m concerned about us disabled people but I also spare a thought for social care professionals.  At least health professionals still get a change to use their skills - for example surgeons still get a chance to fix us if they can.  But social care professionals are no longer able to use the skills they have been trained in.  What a waste.  Instead they are constantly backed into a resource less corner left to hold the line and say ‘no’ to the latest request for support.

“At the social care roundtable last week, Ministers said they were ‘in listening mode’ and asked people to identify the gaps in social care.  Well frankly we need the government to be in action mode and as to the gaps . . . there are so many social care is like an old dishcloth – full of holes and about to disintegrate.

“Charities need to be considered too as they are part of the picture.  Take my guide cane.  Who supplied that?  The public through their donations to the Guide Dogs Association.  The state has virtually opted out of any responsibility for visually impaired people.

"So yes, I’m pretty angry but hopefully in a positive way.  I’m not one to let an opportunity pass me by so DR UK will be responding and engaging.  We’ll be saying it’s urgent action we need to put in place the kind of support that respects our human rights and gives us the chance to be genuinely included in our society as equal citizens.”