Meeting responsibilities

Posted on February 6th, by geoff in Caring Times, CT blog. 3 comments

By Caring Times editor GEOFF HODGSON

Junior health minister David Mowat, the one who drew the social care straw, had a go at talking himself out of a job last week.

Speaking to the House of Commons’ select committee on Communities and Local Government, Mr Mowat opined that people must consider looking after their parents, just as they do their children.

If Mr Mowat were at all familiar with his portfolio he would know that most people are trying their level best to do this already. So often, it is only when the care burden becomes so great and so unremitting that the carers, often in their 60s and 70s themselves, find their own physical and mental health so compromised that in desperation they resort to outside agencies.

Now Mr Mowat didn’t suggest that grandchildren should step up to the mark, but from remarks, such as “people should start thinking as a society how we deal with care of our own parents”, it is not too grand a jump to envisage one generation caring for another which has become ill in consequence of caring for another.

I think that society has thought about this question and has decided that it is the job of government (which is nothing more than a society construct) to underwrite the care of older people.

Given Mr Mowat’s pronouncements I now think that this government, even more than its predecessors, is attempting to shrug-off its social care reesponsibilities. What a sad lack of vision. One must hope that, as the population ages, the national electorate will demand that a future government will address itself to safeguarding the wellbeing of elderly and other vulnerable people. And we must also hope that society can soon recover from the damage that is now being done.

  • The CT Blog is written in a personal capacity – comments and opinions expressed are not necessarily endorsed or supported by Caring Times.

3 responses to “Meeting responsibilities”

  1. Sadly I think you’re right about your conclusions.

  2. Roger Wharton says:

    Victoria Derbyshire BBC2 this morning covers all of these issues and brings the frustrations to the surface. Well worth watching. We need a long term funded development of prevention accompanied by an immediate cash inject to social care of the LGA predicted figure and a plan to deal with appropriate and agreed steady state social care funding by 2020. The total cost will save so much more from the NHS budget and will mean we are caring fro people in the right settings. Passing the buck to Local Authorities will create another post code system of care and tax payers are at risk of being disproportionately taxed twice depending on the demographics of the local authority. Some Local Authorities are already spending 70% or more of their Council Tax Income on social care leaving so little room for them to manoeuvre.

  3. John Burton says:

    We elect governments which choose on our behalf to spend £100s of billions of our money bailing out banks, renewing Trident, and building a high-speed railway, yet allow our NHS and social care to crumble and fail. Ordinary people suffer and die from this callous neglect. The rich buy their health and care. Ordinary people struggle to keep the NHS and social care going, and the rich run and own shares in international banks, arms manufacturers, and construction and civil engineering companies. This is the world we have to change. For a start, we have to stop electing governments whether Conservative, Coalition, or Labour whose loyalty is to themselves and money, and elect governments that will put the NHS and social care, education, libraries, transport, jobs, and communities first.

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