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Social care leaders' vision for a future workforce strategy

20 July 2021

“We all want to live in the place we call home with the people and things that we love, in communities where we look out for one another, doing the things that matter to us.” Social Care Future

We want to see the principles of the Care Act 2014 embedded in social care: Empowerment of people, Prevention, Proportionality, Protection, Partnership with services offering local solutions to their communities and accountability and transparency.

To achieve this, we need to have a sustainable social care workforce for the future, given the increasing demand for support as the population grows and ages, and as care moves closer to home, become more integrated, and new models emerge. This will require a coordinated commitment to the workforce, delivered through a workforce strategy or people plan.

This document outlines what we - the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS), Care Provider Alliance (CPA), Care and Support Alliance (CSA), Local Government Association (LGA), Skills for Care, Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) and Think Local Act Personal (TLAP) - think a social workforce strategy should include.

The strategy should also reflect how people have expressed their wishes and expectations in TLAP’s ‘Making It Real’ framework:

  • I am supported by people who see me as a unique person with strengths, abilities, and aspirations.
  • I am supported by people who listen carefully, so they know what matters to me and how to support me to live the life I want.
  • I am supported to make decisions by people who see things from my point of view, with concern for what matters to me, my wellbeing and health.
  • I have considerate support delivered by competent people. Reform for the workforce, valuing people who draw on social care and shifting towards this vision must go hand in hand.

This vision shifts us from a simplistic model of “care and support workers” and “people receiving care”. It recognises that people are not “being provided with” a service or even “accessing” one, this means they should be true partners in how they are supported. To achieve the vision, we want to see the following:

  1. Staff are recognised, valued and rewarded
  2. Invest in training, qualification and support
  3. Clear career pathways and development opportunities
  4. Building and enhancing social justice, equality, diversity and inclusion in the workforce
  5. Effective workforce planning
  6. Expansion of the workforce in roles which enable prevention and support the growth of innovative models of support

Download the full report: Social care leaders’ vision for a future workforce strategy