It’s disappointing that 13 years of austerity and huge cuts to Local Authority budgets mean that costs are being passed on to some of the most vulnerable people, such as charges for telecare services.
These are a vital lifeline for those who need extra support but can remain in their own home. As a Party, Labour are keen to enshrine a principle of ‘home first’ in the care sector to enable people to leave rich and fulfilling lives without needing to move into a care facility, but we are seeing funding for this stripped away, with the ultimate cost going to vulnerable service users, their families and into for-profit care homes.
The mismanagement of the new bills across Lancashire mean that residents were not charged for the first 6 months, and are now being penalised with lump sum demands from Lancashire County Council.
Having put pressure on them, I’m pleased to see at least now they will offer flexible payments.
But for some of those who are most vulnerable, such as those who need Pension Credit, this alone will not be enough. With a cost of living crisis, rampant inflation (especially for food), energy prices spiking, TV licensing changes, and not to mention the highest tax burden in decades, too many people are being further punished by a Government which strips away funding for this support to stay at home.
You can see LCC’s response to me below: