Safe to be me … at last? Looking at care, welfare and older LGBT people

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We now have laws that protect lesbian, gay, bi and trans (LGBT) people, rather than persecute them. Something to celebrate. For older people in particular, who lived through criminalisation or being diagnosed as mentally ill, this once seemed unimaginable. But the fact that lots of LGBT people still feel they have to pretend to be straight – at work, at the doctor’s, sometimes even to their family – is indication enough that we need more than legislation to encourage people to feel truly safe to be themselves. Continue reading “Safe to be me … at last? Looking at care, welfare and older LGBT people”

APPG for Ageing and Older People – Why we’re launching an inquiry into human rights

This week the All Party Parliamentary Group for Ageing and Older People is launching a new inquiry into human rights. Between now and the spring we’ll be holding meetings to discuss our key topics, share best practice examples and collect evidence. This will inform a final report of recommendations on how we can further the protection of the rights of older people. Continue reading “APPG for Ageing and Older People – Why we’re launching an inquiry into human rights”

Next week is Carers Week

There are 6.5 million people in the UK providing unpaid care for sick, older or disabled relatives or friends and each day 6,000 people in the UK take on new caring responsibilities.  Without the huge contribution of unpaid carers, our already beleaguered health and social care system would grind to a halt.

Sadly, a large majority of carers are let down when it comes to receiving sufficient help and support when they most need it.  In April this year, Carers UK surveyed the public and found that a staggering 74% of those polled felt that carers were undervalued. Continue reading “Next week is Carers Week”

The next Government must resolve the crisis that is engulfing social care, once and for all

Last week, Age UK launched its General Election campaign – Dignity in Older Age – which aims to tackle some of the key issues that millions of older people continue to face. Things like difficulties accessing the care and support they so desperately need, living in poverty and struggling to make ends meet, and facing a later life of loneliness.

Throughout the campaign we’ll be covering some of the issues in depth, this week we are focusing on the crisis in social care. In this article, Caroline Abrahams discusses how many older people in their 80s and above are currently being abandoned by the care system. Continue reading “The next Government must resolve the crisis that is engulfing social care, once and for all”

Finally a focus on social care…?

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As a Surrey resident working for Age UK, I felt quite confused and conflicted about how to vote in the prospective local referendum on a 15% council tax rise. On one hand, I really wasn’t happy about a huge hike in my bills but on the other hand through my work I am acutely aware of the enormous funding gap that has opened up in recent years between social care budgets and the growing number of people needing care and support. I felt grudgingly supportive of the leader of Surrey Council, David Hodge’s radical stance but not desperately keen on his solution.

Continue reading “Finally a focus on social care…?”

Social Care and Budget 2017

So the mood music in advance of the Budget was roughly correct: we have an emergency injection of funds to keep the social care show on the road plus a longer term Government review, in the form of a Green Paper, to develop a new sustainable funding approach. Whether the rescue package will turn out to be enough to persuade providers who are wobbling to stay in the market, or allow councils to do a better job at meeting rising demand over the next couple of years than they have over the last few remains however to be seen. Continue reading “Social Care and Budget 2017”

Guest blog – Employing a personal care assistant

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This week we have a guest blog from The Pensions Regulator which highlights that all employers, including the smallest employers such as those that employ personal care assistants, should check if they need to provide a workplace pension.

As the Pensions Regulator our job is to ensure that pension schemes are adequately funded and run in the best interests of retirement savers – and that employers meet their obligations by enrolling eligible staff into a pension scheme and making contributions. Continue reading “Guest blog – Employing a personal care assistant”