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Scotland in UNISON



Tuesday 20 June Report 2



Urgent funding needed to meet social care needs

George LeeUNISON will campaign for personal care to be free as in Scotland and for urgent extra funding for Social care to meet the demands of the 21st century. And a key part of this will be well trained and well rewarded staff delivering the services.

Eastern region's Sheila Reynolds said, "increasingly, only those with the most severe needs are being catered for. Those with moderate needs being unsupported.

"We need a huge increase in social care funding to meet the needs of both users and workers," she said.

But Edinburgh's George Lee warned, "the flagship free personal care legislation in Scotland is coming under pressure from the bending of rules and efficiency savings".

George, a worker in social care settings for 28 years, said, "I have been one of many who have argued that the historical shortfall in funding would at some time come home to roost irrespective of what party was in power. The projected crisis is now a reality".

There has been investment after the Wanless Report but too much of it had been taken up in wasteful PFI projects. Meeting the increase in the need for social care will take "serious commitment and we should work tirelessly to secure that commitment", added George.

West Midlands' Steve Beardsmore highlighted the human cost of poor social care provision. Social Services had no funds for a basic piece of equipment costing only £110. The branch welfare fund stepped in to help the member but it should not have had to. Steve was disgusted that, "One of the richest countries in the world could not afford £110 including VAT and delivery".