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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

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First minister leadership candidates urged to make social care a priority

This news post is about 1 year old

The letter urges Nicola Sturgeon’s successor to take action by supporting the campaign

Scotland’s membership organisation representing the independent social care sector has issued an open letter to the leading candidates for the First Minister of Scotland as part of the ‘Social Care Campaign’.

The ‘Social Care Campaign’ aims to raise the profile of social care in Scotland by ‘shining a light’ on care homes and homecare services, the crucial role they play and the impact they have on people’s lives. 

During March 2023, Scottish Care and their members have been encouraging individuals, care providers and partner organisations to join them on social media to share facts and good news stories about the social care sector using the hashtags #careaboutcare and #shinealight.

Scottish Care says the social care sector in Scotland is facing a crisis like never before. 

The rising cost of living, including astronomical energy and insurance costs has led to many care homes and homecare providers closing or handing back care packages. Increased funding and assistance is required to ensure the sustainability of the sector.

This comes at a time as the social care sector is experiencing the worst workforce crisis in recent years. There is a serious need to push for change in the sector to ensure that social care workers receive better pay and terms and conditions that reflect their true value.

The letter addressed to the First Minister leadership candidates – Humza Yousaf, Kate Forbes and Ash Regan – calls on them to take action by supporting the campaign and addressing the issues faced by the social sector. 

The key asks from the letter include a financial uplift for social care staff to be paid at least £12 per hour, transparency of the cost of care, proper recognition, investment and funding for the sector. 

They also call for the next First Minister to commit to raising the profile of social care so that the wider public can recognise and understand the unique contribution that social care brings. 

Karen Hedge, deputy CEO of Scottish Care, said: “The purpose, value and potential of social care is grossly misunderstood. This has led to a lack of recognition or investment in the sector including those who access and work in it. 

“This call to the First Minister candidates, no matter what their future roles may be, is an invitation to collaborate towards a flourishing social care future that works for the people of Scotland.”