Posted on February 28, 2014

England not doing enough for care workers' pay

The United Kingdom Home Care Association (UKHCA) has raised concerns that local authorities are not doing enough to correct the poor rate of pay received by care workers. UKHCA wants each local authority to be held to account for the problems being caused by cuts.  It has spoken out in favour of an increase to the national minimum wage but is concerned that this could be used as an excuse not to do anything about the low pay received by care workers. UKHCA has recommended a wage for domiciliary home care of £15.19 before the recommended 3% increase to minimum wage; if the increase is implemented, the rate would be £15.74.  It is estimated that just four councils in England are meeting this figure.  The chair of UKHCA, Mike Padgham, has stated that it wants all care at home workers to receive a good wage for the work they do but that the councils do not understand the pressure that the cuts have created. The organisation want the government to act on its recommendations, particularly if it chooses to increase the national minimum wage.  Others in the industry have also recognised the importance of the minimum wage recommendation from the Low Pay Commission and have called for more attention to be paid to the subject of funding for care. Some domiciliary home care workers are only paid for time with the client; as their travelling time is not covered, they are falling below minimum wage. This is one of the reasons why the sector has a high turnover of staff.
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