Independent Options CEO, Steve Hyde, comments on the 2017 Spring Budget:

“The Spring Budget was recently published, and it is very good news to see that the Chancellor Phillip Hammond has taken some steps in looking at finding extra funding for the social care sector in England.

There is no doubt we are engulfed in a funding crisis at the moment and Independent Options, like other providers faces, an uncertain future. While a cash injection of £2billion over the next three years sounds like a lot of money, the truth is that it only really scratches the surface of what is needed. Stockport is set to receive around £10.5million over the course of the coming three years, and although it sounds like a healthy pot of cash, it is in reality well short of what is needed to tackle the growing crisis throughout the sector in Stockport. I should also add that we also do not yet know specifically where that extra money might go and whether any will be directed towards adults with a learning disability.

In my opinion, the money should predominantly go to front line staff, as, to put it simply, without them there would be no services provided to those who are in need. The Chancellor made reference to the production of a green paper on the future of adult social care and that perhaps is the most important announcement he made. This would allow the government to consult on the future of how social care is funded, which is the central issue that faces us as a sector as the current funding arrangements are, as evidenced by the current state of adult social care, not fit for purpose. I would hope that this cash injection will be the start of a reform of funding for care.”