Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Keep national insurance rise to boost social care wages, say Tory MPs

The health and social care levy introduced last year needs to be kept in order to fund higher wages in the sector, two Conservative MPs have said (Jonathan Brady/PA)
The health and social care levy introduced last year needs to be kept in order to fund higher wages in the sector, two Conservative MPs have said (Jonathan Brady/PA)

Social care workers need to be “better paid and more highly regarded” rather than earning less than dog walkers, a former deputy prime minister has said.

In a report published on Tuesday, Damian Green called for the minimum wage for care workers to be increased in line with NHS pay and said there needed to be a shift in public opinion similar to the boost in status that nurses received following the work of Florence Nightingale during the Crimean War.

Mr Green, who served as deputy prime minister under Theresa May, said: “We need more care workers, we need them to stay longer in their jobs, and we need them to be better paid and more highly regarded.”

Anne Pridmore, who receives 24/7 social care and contributed to the report, said: “We must recognise and appreciate the skills of the workforce, and pay workers a decent wage.

“I get to pay my carers £10 an hour in a town where you can get £15 for dog walking. How can this be conducive to good recruitment and retention?”

The report, published by centre-right think tank Public Policy Projects (PPP), comes as the Conservative leadership debate focuses on tax cuts.

Leadership candidate and Foreign Secretary Liz Truss has promised to scrap the increase in national insurance brought in to help pay for the NHS and social care.

Conservative MP Chris Skidmore, who is also PPP’s research director and is backing Ms Truss’s rival Rishi Sunak, said the report “demonstrates comprehensively why the Government was right to introduce the health and social care levy last year”.

Mr Skidmore said: “Without additional investment and resource, it will be impossible for our social care sector to survive without a loss of care provision, threatening the welfare of thousands of elderly and vulnerable clients who deserve better.

“While it’s easy to talk about tax cuts, the reality is that this leads to cuts to services, cuts to care and ultimately placing the lives of those in need under threat.”

He added: “Anyone who is advocating for the removal of the social care levy needs to come forward to explain how they are going to fund social care without it. It looks as if a key Conservative pledge to protect homes from being sold to pay for care is now at risk.”

As well as raising the minimum wage for care workers, the PPP report recommends better funding for workforce wellbeing, promotion of social care careers in schools and the establishment of a Royal College of Care Professionals to raise the sector’s status.

The report also calls for local authorities to pay the “fair cost” of care to providers, rather than relying on people self-funding their care to make up the cost of proper wages.