09 September 2021, The Tablet

Human cost of the tax on care

Social care reform


The political debate surrounding the provision of care for elderly and infirm people has focused largely on how to pay for it, rather than on what good social care should consist of. So although the government has made proposals this week to address the funding issues, a yawning policy gap remains to be filled.

The only way to measure the justice of its funding proposals is by the eventual results. And those must include the effect of those proposals on existing inequality in society at large, as well as on the quality of care those proposals are designed to deliver. Critics of the government’s proposals are right to point out that an increase in the level of national insurance is in fact a straight tax rise, and one that is less progressive than income tax. It will increase inequality.

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