The government has announced that it will delay a long-awaited social care ‘Green Paper’ until the summer. Ministers had originally indicated that the paper would be published by the end of this year, however the date has been pushed further and further back as Brexit negotiations consume government time and political focus.
Later Life Ambitions has consistently called for a long-term, cross-party solution to the social care crisis. Not only is the Green Paper crucial for the future viability of the sector, it is desperately needed by older people, and their families across the country who are having to navigate an increasingly complex and costly system.
Although we recognise that the overhaul of such an important policy area cannot be rushed, we urge government to ensure that the Green Paper does not fall any further behind. With real solutions unlikely to be in place for a number of years, there is only so much more strain the sector can handle.
Later Life Ambitions was therefore hugely disappointed that social care was not a focus of the Budget yesterday. We are concerned about the impact of the mounting stress in the system on older people, and believe that government needs to step in urgently to relieve the stress in the system.
In the interim, we believe that the government should immediately introduce the recommendations that were set out in the Dilnot Commission in 2011 as an interim measure until government settles on its permanent approach.
What is a Green Paper?
A Green Paper is a consultation documents produced by the government that enables ministers to gather the views of interested organisations and individuals. When published, the social care Green Paper will set out how Government proposes to improve care and support for older people and tackle the challenge of an ageing population. The solutions put forward by the Government will be subject to a public consultation which Later Life Ambitions will contribute to on behalf of our members.