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Brexit could worsen broken care system for older people

The Government must act to make sure EU care staff can come to work in the UK for older people who rely on them. Help us spread this important message. 

With the UK's expected departure from the EU now just weeks away, we're urging the Government to put measures in place to allow EU nationals to continue to come to the UK to work as paid care staff.

EU nationals currently make up 104,000 of those working in care in the UK, and that number is rising. Most work in London and the south, and many provide 'live-in care' which helps older people stay in their own homes.

Brexit could affect EU carers' right to work in the UK

Under a new rule recommended by the Government's Migration Advisory Committee, carers would be considered 'low skilled EU workers' and would not get preferential access to the UK labour market after we leave the EU.

We think this is a huge mistake. Care workers are low paid, but not low skilled. And our care workforce is in no position to withstand the loss of good, willing care workers, wherever they come from.

Bill is 90 and needs round-the-clock care.

The care he receives allows him to stay in his own home, where he's lived since the 1960s. 

Most of his carers are not from the UK. 

Watch his story

There already aren't enough care workers for everyone who needs them

Social care in the UK is already in a fragile state. Recent research shows that 130,000 new care workers are needed each year just for the social care workforce to cope with current levels of demand.

Right now, there are around 110,000 unfilled care jobs in the UK, and more than 3 in 10 care staff leave their jobs each year.

This high turnover and shortage of people taking up caring jobs means that many people who need care at home – millions of whom are older – are at risk of missing out on the support they desperately need.

Fix care for good

Too many older people don’t get the essential care they desperately need. We're campaigning to get the Government to address this.

We're worried things will only get worse after Brexit

The care system in the UK is in no fit state to withstand the loss of EU workers, now or in the future. If care workers based in the EU are no longer able to work as live-in carers in the UK, care companies will find it hard to meet rising demand.

It's expected that there'll be 14.5 million people aged over 65 by 2035. That's 44% more than there were in 2017. To cope with that rise, around 650,000 extra care jobs will be needed.

No matter what sort of Brexit we have, we must make sure the Government considers care in its decisions.

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Last updated: Nov 04 2020

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