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Tax rises needed for social care

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Social care services are under great strain Social care services are under great strain

The Government should consider increases in national taxation to fund the UK’s adult social care services, The Local Government Association (LGA) has said.

According to the organisation, polling has found that support for an increase in National Insurance was the most popular with the public of the options put forward with 56% of people in favour, while only 18% opposed the measure.

'It is a travesty that social care has been neglected by politicians for so long, forcing it to the brink of collapse,’ said George McNamara, director of policy and influencing at Independent Age, the older people’s charity.

'Our research on the future funding of care found that not only would increasing National Insurance or Income Tax bring in over £5.5 billion, but that the public support it.

'This would make providing free personal care for all older people a real possibility. The Government must take the bull by the horns and give social care the money needed to end the crisis in care and ensure older people thrive, not just survive.'

As part of the Autumn Budget, Chancellor Philip Hammond announced there would be an £800m boost for social care. However, it is estimated adult social care services still face a £3.5bn funding gap by 2025, just to maintain existing standards of care.

‘The Government must use its upcoming green paper to make a serious case for national tax rises including either increases to Income Tax and/or National Insurance to provide long term sustainability for the vital social care services that are central to helping people to live fulfilling, independent lives,’ said Ian Hudspeth, chairman of the LGA’s Community Wellbeing Board.

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