2024-07-10 11:08:56

Learning disability charity says cross-party approach is the only solution to social care crisis

Hft, the learning disability charity, has congratulated Sir Keir Starmer on his election win but adds that the approach to solving the crisis in social care will take brave and strong leadership to address head-on the complexities and challenges the sector is facing.

“A lasting solution will mean resisting the temptation to offer quick fixes or exploiting the issue for political gain by any of the parties,” he says.

“There wasn’t a great deal of mention of social care in the manifesto, so we already know that, as a sector in crisis, we need to work with Labour MPs to make sure they understand the scale of the problem. We need to help them understand the issues we are facing before we can hope for a true solution.”

He added that any solutions to the social care crisis would need to ensure funding reaches the frontline and that Local Authorities are held to the highest account in how they use money allocated by central government to support social care.

“Our Sector Pulse Check report, published in partnership with Care England, revealed that, due to funding shortfalls, around 40% of providers have been in deficit for the past two years.

“Low levels of pay, alongside poor perceptions of careers in social care, contribute to high rates of turnover and vacancies.

“Ultimately, this means social care providers can be forced to turn people away or, in some cases, close services altogether.

“Social care providers need the security of a long-term funding settlement. This means ringfenced funding for Local Authorities that enables them to pay the real cost of care, including a wage for the workforce which reflects the importance of their work,” Steve stresses.

“Labour’s proposed fair pay agreement in adult social care is vitally important to us, to ensure we can pay our colleagues fairly and provide the quality of services the people we support deserve. However, we’ll need to work closely with the government to highlight that any pay agreement should be fully funded.

“This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to really transform social care and create a brighter future for learning disabled adults. But we need to make sure that promises are not forgotten and that solutions are fully funded.”

“As a charity, we look forward to working with all parties to find sustainable solutions to provide long-term financial security for our sector and enable it to deliver at its best for the people we support.

Notes to editors

For further information please phone 07500 224654 or email media.enquiries@hft.org.uk

About Hft

Proudly established in 1962 by a group of visionary parents, Hft is a charity supporting more than 2,500 learning disabled adults in England and Wales. Together, we are creating a future where learning disabled people and their families can live the best life possible.

Providing personalised support. Creating solutions for living independently. Coming together to campaign for positive change. Fundraising for new opportunities and a bigger impact.

In 2033, we’ll live in a world where learning disabled people have greater choice. About where they live. The support they need and want. And how to spend their time and money.


Learning disability versus difficulty


A learning disability is different from a learning difficulty but the terms are often confused and used inter-changeably. A learning difficulty does not affect general intellect, whereas a learning disability is a life-long condition characterised by a reduced intellectual ability and struggle with everyday activities.

For more information about Hft please visit www.hft.org.uk