Jonathan Werran 02 May 2012

Shrinking social care puts families and employers under strain

Families are facing huge pressures and business productivity is suffering due to shrinking local authority social care services, a carers’ charity has reported.

In its study, Growing the Care Market, Carers UK has joined with major employers - such as BT - in urging Government collaboration with the private sector to stimulate a growth in services which support older and disabled people.

Inflexibility, unavailability and high costs of local care services has forced 31% of people of working age to give up work or reduce their working hours to care for dependents, the charity’s survey of more than 4,000 carers revealed.

It also costs the Government an estimated £1.3bn in lost tax revenues and carers’ costs, as a result of workers being forced to abandon their jobs, according to a study released last week by the London School of Economics.

Chief executive of Carers UK, Helena Herklots said: ‘The current crisis in care means that Government cannot escape the need to invest in chronically under-funded social care services. But whether you are an individual buying your own care or a local council commissioning social care services - it is in all our interests to cultivate a vibrant care market.’

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