Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://secure.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1164/33639

From The Socialist newspaper, 26 January 2022

Social care providers put profit before residents' needs - nationalise care now

  (Click to enlarge)

A care worker in the South West

Five years ago, I wrote for the Socialist explaining what it was like working in care, the limited time we had to get people washed, dressed, and to help them eat and drink.

It is now 2022 and, writing again, I would love to say that things have got easier, but I can't. That would be lying. I know what I'm about to tell you isn't unique to my workplace, or the difficulties created by the times we are in (although they would love to blame everything on Covid). It could be, and is, repeated every day in every care home in the country, and that just makes it more worrying.

The home I work in is part of a big company. We have some of the most vulnerable people in our care, all of whom are coming to the end of their lives. They need help with everything, are often scared, lonely and sometimes in pain. But because of inadequate staffing levels they will spend a lot of time on their own, waiting for things we all take for granted: food, drinks, a human voice telling them they are not on their own, or even just a hand to hold.

It's a typical weekday evening. It's 8pm, and my colleague and I should be going home but we can't, as we have paperwork to finish. On our unit of 22 residents there have been just three of us on shift - two carers and one nurse. It's been that way since 3pm.

We have to put our residents first, so we've sorted out supper, then assisted all 22 residents with their incontinence needs, made them comfortable in bed and apologised to them for not being able to have a chat. In the back of my head I'm thinking: "Please don't ask for another drink as I still have 12 people to check and its 7.30pm already".

It gets to 9pm and I can finally go home having been in the building since 8am. My colleague and I are tired, hungry and angry. I work in care because I care and it is a job I love. But a lot of the time it feels like I'm working on a production line just going from one person to the next, to the next.

The culture coming from above seems to be that the residents we look after are not people at all, but rather bodies in a bed who provide a way of making the shareholders their dividends.

If you watch the news, read the papers, or listen to the radio, you will hear time and time again government minsters blaming the crisis in care on Covid. And yes, it hasn't helped. But the crisis in care has been happening for years as privatisation has run rampant. Covid has brought it to the surface, but the care crisis is really about people at the top not caring and, once again, putting profit before residents' needs.


Care costs and bosses' pay

Privatised care bosses are worried. The costs of running a care home is set to rise by around 30% as food and energy prices soar, and worker shortages hit.

The chief executive of one care chain, Barchester Healthcare, received a £250,000 pay rise last year, taking his pay packet to £2.27 million, according to the Financial Times.

I think we can see where that boss chose to spend some of the £12.6 million of Covid grants the firm received during the pandemic!

But who is going to pay for the increased costs? Not the millionaire bosses, but the residents. The company plans to raise fees by over 7%.


Staff agencies' exploitation

Other capitalist vultures circle. They won't let the opportunity for profiteering pass by. With 18% of social care vacancies unfilled, care agencies charge providers up to £60 an hour to supply agency nurses - not that the workers themselves see anything near that amount. 71% of care workers are paid below the real living wage.


Solve the staff shortage crisis

End profiteering

High quality care for all

Donate to the Socialist Party

Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • We must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our Fighting Fund.

Please donate here.

All payments are made through a secure server.

My donation

 

Your message: 

 


In The Socialist 26 January 2022:


What we think

We need a workers' alternative to big business Tories and Labour


News

Lords reject parts of anti-protest bill

News in brief

Social care providers put profit before residents' needs - nationalise care now


Cost of living

Cost of living crisis


Trade unions and the cuts

Trade unions and the fight against council cuts


Workplace news

Barts NHS workers strike back

Sheffield Just Eat strikers step up action and hold mass rally

Oaks Park School: valiant strike exposed state of schools

Education: Workload and inflation goes up, incomes fall

DWP reps demand action from PCS leadership

10,000 tube workers vote to strike - don't make workers pay for TfL funding crisis

Strike action by Carmarthenshire winter gritters wins concessions from council

Universities: Strike action at 68 in two disputes

Worksop Wincanton logistics workers begin ninth week of strike action


International news

Trade unionists in the USA fighting back


Campaigns news

Hundreds protest to save St Mary's Leisure Centre in Southampton

Wakefield TUSC - Fighting for low-paid workers and NHS

Eviction resistance on the march in Waltham Forest

This is students' chance to fight back - help build 2 March NUS walkout

Selling the Socialist


Environment

Britain's waterways choked with a 'chemical cocktail'


Readers' opinion

War in Yemen, made in Harlow, profit for rich

Somers 'slaughterhouse' Forge

UK Covid-19 mortality similar to Spanish Flu

It's my party, and I'll lie if I want to


 

Home   |   The Socialist 26 January 2022   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Nationalise:

triangleCut our fuel bills - nationalise energy

triangleGas and electric bills set to soar by 50% this year

triangleTories hand cash to private health profiteers

triangleEnergy price crisis: nationalise energy giants to save us from 600 hit

triangleTV review: Vaccine Wars: The Truth About Pfizer

Profit:

triangleTesco slashes jobs and customer service

triangleWar in Yemen, made in Harlow, profit for rich

triangleNews in brief

triangleDon't Look Up: An entertaining satire on corporate power and the US establishment

Pay:

triangleTV review: This is Going to Hurt

triangleJust Eat couriers continue action to fight pay cut

triangleUniversity workers continue strike against bosses' attacks

Workers:

triangleFor workers' unity against war in Ukraine

triangleWorkers and students unite and fight

Covid:

triangleJohnson scraps Covid safety measures

Care workers:

triangleHealth and care staff shortages worsened by Tory vaccine sacking threat

News and socialist analysis

News and socialist analysis

23/2/22

Workers

The Erdington byelection and the fight for a new mass workers' party

23/2/22

Birmingham

Vote Nellist for a workers' MP in Erdington

23/2/22

Unite

Unite and fight for a decent pay rise

23/2/22

NHS

Privatisation and crisis in the NHS

23/2/22

Covid

Johnson scraps Covid safety measures

23/2/22

Britain

Tories instruct teachers to wipe Britain's real history

23/2/22

Bus

Bus services under threat

16/2/22

PCS

PCS Elections 2022: Time for new union leadership

16/2/22

Britain

Britain's economic growth figures mask fragile false recovery

16/2/22

Covid

Covid: Fight for full sick pay

16/2/22

Coventry

'Labour by name - Tory by policy'

16/2/22

Taxes

Tory stealth taxes burden 'packhorse generation'

16/2/22

Labour

Left Labour MPs under pressure over Erdington

16/2/22

London

Neither Washington, London nor Moscow

16/2/22

Police

Met police boss ousted

triangleMore News and socialist analysis articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: [email protected]

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 079 8202 1969

East Mids: 077 3797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 078 4114 4890

North West 079 5437 6096

South West: 077 5979 6478

Southern: 078 3368 1910

Wales: 077 7221 5281

West Mids: 024 7655 5620

Yorkshire: 078 0983 9793

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


May 2022

April 2022

March 2022

February 2022

January 2022

2021

2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999