Social care funding mirage

Posted on: 15th September 2021

The much-heralded social care funding policy was clever but a typical Johnsonian showboating deception. At a superficial level – ie the level at which Johnson prefers to operate and where he performs at his theatrical best – the case is compelling. [We need to find a solution to the long-running crisis in social care. If that means raising taxes, even if that means breaking yet another manifesto promise, the nettle must be grasped.] At that level, I agree.

 

However, there’s virtually no new money for social care. The relatively small £1.8 billion per annum promised increase barely compensates for the funding cut since 2010. So, we’re back to square one.

 

The method of taxation is the least progressive of the available options. NI increases affect lower paid and younger workers. It would have been far better to have introduced a range of taxes on wealth, property and investment. The obsession which lies behind this policy announcement – of protecting the inheritance of the (especially property) rich – will help the wealthiest but won’t save the inheritance of middle- and lower-income families.