More mass hysteria press accounts again today on George Osborne compulsary living wage for those in the care industry over 25. The myth and smoke and mirrors continues to grow.
It was never going to be a easy ride. Right from the beginning when Local Authorities could purchase care there were doubts about how problem free this would be. There was always going to be issues of vested interests conflicting with each other. Local Authorities would always want to try to get the best deal; meaning at the cheapest price. While care providers would attempt to get as much as they could possibly get out of the deal.
Critics always said that this would lead to standards of care falling within care homes. This has been proven to be so. The nature of the economic system operating in the care industry hasn't helped either.
The Market Driven Economy has brought out the worst in Care Providers large and small alike.
When I was young and naive I believed that all parties involved in industrial disputes (and that's what this one is in truth) could come together and find common ground and work for the general good. That bosses and workers could work together; I know better now.
Top and bottom providers don't want to pay the extra money period.
They still want slave labour out of whom they can extract excess profit. I hope George Osbourne sticks to his guns.
What in effect the providers are asking for is for the Government using taxpayers money to pay them their workers wages.
They waffle on about the financial crash but forget that they didn't pay their workers a living wage before that occurred. Care home workers have never been paid a decent living wage by so many of the providers including the big five who are making all the noise.
The five main providers comments are contradictory: Dr Chia Patel HC-ONE boss adds "We have always supported The Living Wage and feel that it is a recognition of the wonderful work that carers are doing." No you don't. You want the Government to pay it for you. You say "Unfortunately, if the Government does not fund it, it would not be affordable." Your own words Dr Patel.
Then we have fellow Peddler of Doom Martin Green, Chief Executive of Care England. He says "The care sector welcomes the National Living Wage and has long campaigned for it to be introduced." Pull the other one Martin because you say "However, it is not sustainable for us to meet the increased cost of care when Local Authorities are already paying well below the true cost of delivery."
Is it not true gentlemen that every year your care homes increase care fees for those who are self funding in your care homes?
It is not a fact that self funders have been milked in order to cover for those sums of money you feel the Local Authority should really be paying you?
The Chinese economy is looking set for downturn. Interest Rates will increase with catastrophic consequences for care home providers refinancing and paying off high long term loans.
Martin Green, Dr Chia Patel and Des Kelly yes the industry is in meltdown, but it's not the compulsary pittance that is being given that will cause the crash but the instability of the Market Driven Economy.
A very good and highly successful businessman friend of mine today said "well the answer is simple then isn't it; stop taking Local Authority people".
To that I would add and let the NHS run care homes for those people. With the NHS paying for the care of those residents that they should have been doing all along. We are aware that some homes are currently being run by the NHS, but there do not appear to be any statistics to clarify how many.
Are they softening us all up for the imminent crash of a big name care provider as Your Voice Matters have been speculating on for some time now?
Any bets on who it will be? Four Seasons Healthcare or maybe Barchester?
Time will tell.
I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!