care beds - elderly person - care costs to be free for over 85s in Cheshire East

Dear Editor,
As we wait for the outcome of the Prime Ministerial contest, I’ve personally asked both candidates this question; “Cheshire East spends two thirds of the budget on Social Care. How will you support and fund social care going forward?”

Sunak cited his National Insurance rise for higher earners to support the NHS and Social Care provision by £36 billion over the next three years.

Truss vowed to cut the NI tax rise and grow the economy.

It’s also worth noting that Kier Starmer’s Labour Party voted against the NI rise and admitted that they would not offer any alternative plans for social care funding until a General Election.

But Covid has highlighted that no political party can continue to ignore social care.

Too often we hear the call for more doctors and nurses when in fact we should equally be crying out for more care workers – and therein lies the problem.

Whilst incomes are compromised by the cost-of-living crisis, unemployment rates are low (3.8% in July)

However the Age Dependency Ratio has risen for years and in 2021 there were 57.4 under 15s and over 65-year-olds for every 100 of the working population.

As employers seek good staff, there are simply not enough workers to go around.

Macclesfield and Leighton Hospitals are dependent on local social care services to support discharges from hospital or prevent patients entering hospital at all and it’s fair to say that without social care, our NHS would collapse.

Consequently, we must value care workers as highly as we do NHS staff.

In turn, politicians of all parties must establish career and pay structures that reflect the value of social care staff and care providers to the wider care and health system and most importantly, their value to those we know and love, who rely on their services.


Cllr Janet Clowes
Conservative Group Leader: Cheshire East Council

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