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NCF responds to Conservative party election manifesto launch  

The National Care Forum (NCF) – the leading association for not-for-profit social care have responded to the publication today of the Conservative party election manifesto. 

Vic Rayner OBE commented: “Disappointingly this Conservative election manifesto leaves social care firmly in the shadows. Despite the millions receiving care, the 1.6 million working in care and the estimated 10 million unpaid carers, the detail about social care stretches to a meagre 13 lines in the printed document, and no mention whatsoever in the PM’s speech. The main thrust involves restating the previously promised, and repeatedly delayed, cap on care costs and workforce reforms as featured in the ‘People at the Heart of Care’.  

“Announcements surrounding the reduction in National Insurance seem particularly ironic in relation to social care, where less than three years ago, increases in this very tax had been presented as the lifeline to address all the challenges facing social care. Roll forward a budget or two, and instead of increasing this tax, the political ambition centres around removing it altogether.   

“It is of concern that the proposals to reduce taxes seem predicated on a pledge to make £12bn worth of cuts to welfare and benefits, which often represent a fundamental support to people who are receiving care and support. Whilst the policy intent may not be focussed on this cohort, the rhetoric surrounding this has the potential to negatively impact people with learning disabilities and/or autism and those with physical disabilities – many of whom access benefits in order to work and live independently.  

“The only new and welcome measure that shows even the slightest acknowledgement that there are urgent pressures in system, is the pledge to give local authorities a multi-year funding settlement. We need to see more detail on this.” 

She concluded: “It’s vital that people drawing on care are given the opportunity to add their perspectives to election manifesto announcements. We are working with our members to gather together the reactions of people who draw on care and support which will give a strong indication of where parties are doing things right and where others are falling short.” 

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