United Response cautiously welcomes additional social care funding in today’s Budget, but asks for clarity on how it will reach people with a learning disability

In response to the Spring Budget on 8th March 2017, Sarah Bartlett, Head of Policy and Campaigns at United Response, said:

“We cautiously welcome the Chancellor’s announcement today that the Government will be investing an additional £2 billion in social care over the next three years.

“We very much hope that some of this money at least will be spent on meeting the funding shortfall facing the learning disability sector, due to years of underfunding in the face of growing demand and the increased costs of paying staff the legal wage.

“There is still uncertainty however, over the mechanism through which this funding will be distributed.  We must keep in mind that to date the Better Care Fund has not delivered for the thousands of people with learning disabilities who need it, but has been focused instead on preventing bed blocking.

“We welcome the announcement of a green paper later this year on the long term funding of social care. The green paper must look specifically at the crisis facing the learning disability sector whose funding represents 39% of the social care budget. Without this, the vital support that people with learning disabilities need to live independently, continues to be in jeopardy.”