Yesterday’s Autumn Statement failed to address the funding crisis councils, the NHS and voluntary sector face in providing social care.
The Local Government Association has said that the government must take urgent action to properly fund social care if councils are to stand any chance of protecting the services which care for the elderly and vulnerable.
They also state that extra council tax raising powers will not bring in enough money to alleviate the pressure on social care and councils will not receive the vast majority of new funding in the Better Care Fund until the end of the decade.
Cllr Stephen Morgan says:
“Despite the largest deficit and longest waiting lists in the history of the NHS, there was not a single extra penny announced in the Autumn Statement to deal with the crisis in the NHS and social care. The Chancellor didn’t even mention social care in his speech once.
Social care services supporting the elderly and vulnerable are now at breaking point”.
The autumn statement also made no mention of the NHS at all.
The next few years are expected to be extremely challenging for councils with central government cuts.
“All councils are facing difficult decisions about the future of local services. The Government must allow local government to use extra business rate income to plug the growing funding gap as a result of reductions in the formula grant and give councils more time to plan their budgets”.
Estimates suggest local government faces an overall £5.8 billion funding gap by 2020.