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Proposed adult social care reform from central government could cost council £25million a year

Proposed adult social care reform from central government could cost council £25million a year

15 November 2022
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Adult social care worker looking after elderly resident

The borough council is continuing to campaign on behalf of residents over the proposed adult social care funding and reform.

Estimates suggest that the reforms as currently planned would cost the council about £25million per year, which is about 17% of its budget and would not be affordable.

Council leader writes to Health Secretary

Leader of the Council Cllr Clive Jones has written to Health Secretary Stephen Barkley setting out the potential impact and calling for the changes to be delayed and properly thought through.


Cllr Jones said: “Adult social care desperately needs reforming so all vulnerable people get the help they need and we actually support the aims of the government’s proposal. But they have got the funding so badly wrong. The proposed changes just cannot work because they would bankrupt local councils who are the people who provide the care.


“We are one of the councils that would be particularly affected by the proposals to cap the amount people have to pay for their care because we have a lot of people currently funding their own care. We are not opposed to the principle of capping care costs, but the Government needs to find the money to make this happen. The reforms as they stand would cost us £25million due to loss of income, the need for additional staff and increased demand.


“We’ve written to the Health Secretary asking simply that he pauses to consider these issues rather than press on with an ill-thought-out plan.”

Staffing and funding 

The Government’s planned changes come at a time of existing crisis in adult social care with all local authorities facing staffing and funding difficulties. A recent Skills for Care report into the state of adult social care highlighted many issues with recruitment, retention and pay, including:

  • Four out of five jobs in the economy pay more than jobs in social care.   
  • Average care worker pay is one pound per hour less than healthcare assistants in the NHS that are new to their roles    

Propping up a broken system

Executive member for Adult Social Care, Cllr David Hare, said: “Our adult social care staff are caring, committed and skilled but like all their peers across the country, their hard work and dedication is propping up a broken system.  We urgently need reform and realistic funding but sadly the proposals currently on the table will make things worse not better. For the sake of the vulnerable adults in our community, we are all urging the government to listen to all these councils who are calling for a radical rethink.”

More from Wokingham Borough Council   

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