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Care England, the largest and most diverse representative body for independent providers of adult social care in England, has today called for action to address the challenges experienced by providers of care to individuals with a learning disability and autistic people.

Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, says:

“The report makes for a sobering read and underscores the real pressures facing independent sector providers of care to individuals with a learning disability and autistic people. These providers have been largely overlooked in all Government policy proposals pertaining to sustainable reform, specifically the adult social care charging reforms in England. It is wholly unacceptable as learning disability and autism providers represent around 50% of Local Authority social care spending for half the number of residents in care. With most Local Authorities having put their money into domiciliary care and older person residential care as a result of the Fair Cost of Care exercise, these specialist providers have been left to pick up the pieces and are paying the price. There is no roadmap to secure the financial sustainability of this critical part of the adult social care sector.”

The Cordis Bright report has revealed that independent care and support providers are reaching a financial tipping point which risks denying people with learning disabilities and autistic people their right to decent, fulfilling, and stable care.

Martin Green continues:

“These funding challenges are deep-rooted and systemic and have very real implications on those who require care and support in the community as well as the workforce itself. In a recent survey run by Care England, 10% of learning disability and autism providers said they were looking to hand back packages of care to Local Authorities, with 75% of providers saying the fees paid by Local Authorities were too low to sustain provision, with agency costs cited as the primary issue catalysing unviability. There are people behind these numbers and the current finance package being offered to these providers needs to improve. As a matter of priority, the Government must set out immediate measures to secure the financial stability of learning disability and autism providers, as well as a longer-term plan to ensure the sector flourishes in supporting people to live the lives they deserve to lead.”