Archbishop of Canterbury urges fixing UK's 'broken' social care system
Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, said care homes are "struggling" and that it is up to "all of us" to fix it.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, has called on the government to act to repair the country's "broken" social care system.
Welby said in his New Year's message that care homes are "struggling" to deal with rising bills while trying to find and retain the staff they need to stay open.
"We know our care system is broken, but it doesn't have to be. We can rise to the challenge of fixing it," he said, adding that action should come from all families, communities, and the government.
He stressed the importance of ensuring the work of carers is properly valued by society. "Why work as a carer when you might get paid more in less demanding jobs? Caring's certainly not easy. Good carers are wonderful people to be valued," he said.
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His intervention came as he prepares to publish, with the Archbishop of York, what he described as a "significant report" on social care.
Welby said he hoped the report will offer a "hopeful vision of our society". "One where no one is held back, overlooked or treated as a burden - where families and unpaid carers get support too," he said.
"Caring goes to the heart of what it means to be human. It is hard, but it can also be the most life-giving thing we ever do. It comes back to that essential lesson: we need each other."
According to a government spokesperson, ministers prioritized social care in last month's autumn statement, allocating up to £7.5 billion in funding over the next two years.
"This will allow more people to access high-quality care and help address some of the challenges in the sector - including waiting lists, low fee rates, and workforce pressures," the spokesperson said.
He added that the government remains committed to implementing adult social care charging reform and assisting those in need, which is "why we are giving local governments more time to prepare and providing more funding to assist with their immediate pressures."
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