Decent wage for care staff more important than private profits


In my column in today’s Scotsman, I discuss the need for a decent wage for our care workers.  “If private sector care homes cannot afford to pay carers a decent wage, they should be taken over by councils or run by not-for-profit organisations.”

“I’ve been in many care homes visiting as the constituency representative or meeting elderly friends or relatives. All, irrespective of ownership, I’ve found well run and staff remarkably attentive. You’d expect no less as the Care Commission has invariably been diligent and don’t hesitate to act if they’ve concerns.

“But coronavirus has brought care homes into the spotlight. Something has gone tragically wrong as the mounting death toll testifies to. There’ll have to be a review, if not an inquiry. Lessons need to be learned, as the families are also entitled to no less. That though is a separate issue.

“Ownership of care homes is also coming into question. Just who should run them and for what purpose, requires to be considered. The state, through financial pressures, has walked away from the service over recent years, ending up as the funder of a largely privately delivered service. As with some other critical public services, that raises problems.”

You can read the full column here.