Social care in crisis as stressed and angry workers demand: ‘End this nightmare’

Social care is facing the worst workforce disaster in living memory as exhausted and underpaid carers quit the profession in their tens of thousands.

A catastrophic cocktail of low wages, staff burnout, mandatory Covid jabs and post-Brexit immigration rules has brought the industry looking after our old and vulnerable to its knees.

But today the Sunday Mirror declares enough is enough as we launch a campaign to end the looming destruction of social care in Britain.

We want an end to:

Wrung-out skilled carers switching jobs to become delivery drivers, supermarket staff, Amazon workers, because, shamefully, the money is better.

We want an end to:

An astonishing 120,000 jobs in social care in England remaining unfilled – with 42,000 unvaccinated care workers set to leave in weeks under the Government’s “no jab, no job” rule.

We want an end to:

Three out of four homes reporting an increase in staff exits. That’s the way it’s been since April. Surveys say half quit due to stress – and 44% found better pay elsewhere.

We want an end to:

Homes forced to choose between moving residents out or closing – like Barrock Court, near Carlisle, which shut this month after attempts to recruit new employees failed.

Our Stop The Care Crisis campaign calls on the Government to no longer treat care workers as second-class staff compared to the NHS.

We call on Boris Johnson, and health and social care secretary Sajid Javid to pledge:

  • An immediate review into pay, bringing care into line with similar NHS roles.
  • A professional register for care workers in England as other UK countries have.
  • The addition of care to the Shortage Occupation list so migrant staff can fill vacancies.
  • An end to unpaid travel time for home care workers. Shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth backed our campaign saying: “It’s time we cared for carers as they care for us.”

Despite skill and dedication, the average care home worker earns £9.01 an hour – 10p above the national living wage. They take home up to £18,000 a year – £7,000 less than an equivalent role in the NHS, contributing to a staff turnover rate more than double the national average.

Yet we’ll need another 488,000 health staff and 627,000 social care workers to meet demand over the next decade, research from charity The Health Foundation suggests. At Wren Hall home, in Selston near Nottingham, we were told two staff quit after Amazon opened a nearby warehouse. An evening housekeeper on £9.30 an hour now gets £13.50 an hour with the online giant – on top of a £1,000 joining bonus.

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Published by MigrationUK

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