Croydon Council has warned that the three-year funding plan announced in the Spring budget statement is only a ‘stop gap’ solution to a financial crisis that will continue to spiral.
Following the Chancellor’s announcement of additional adult social care funding for the next three years, the council has learned it will receive an additional £5.5m in 2017/18, £4m in 2018/19 and £2m in 2019/20.
Councillor Louisa Woodley, cabinet member for families, health and social care, said in a press release: “We welcome this grant as a short term solution – but we remain seriously concerned about the lack of a long-term funding strategy and the failure to address this vital issue properly through the budget.
“Adult social care services across the country are already in the midst of a funding crisis – already thousands of service-users, carers and their families in Croydon are being impacted by cuts. With an ever-growing need and an ever-shrinking pot, the challenges are real.”
In the Spring budget it was announced that £2billion would go towards social care nationwide over the next three years. The first £1billion will be provided in 2017/18 so “councils can take immediate action to fund care packages for more people, support social care providers, and relieve pressure on the NHS.”
A government statement explained: “The government is committed to establishing a fair and more sustainable basis for adult social care.”
Disability Rights UK also recognise that the “funding is seen as a stop-gap before a more secure and sustainable system is in place.”
Local authorities have not yet been informed of any requirements attached to the funding, such as the area it can be spent on, with details on the conditions and guidance expected later this month.
East London borough Lewisham discovered earlier last month that continuing cuts to its council meant a charge will be introduced on adult social care.