Demand for government action on sleep in crisis ahead of first anniversary of controversial compliance scheme
But 12 months on from government introducing its social care compliance scheme, there is still no official guidance on how sleep in shift work should be remunerated and no government commitment for action on the issue.
VODG has consistently highlighted the threats to the sector through government’s inaction:
- local care providers and commissioners reacting in different ways – risks undermining the local services
- confusion and uncertainty as employers make decisions about whether to stay in the scheme – with pressure on boards who are legally obliged to sign off accounts.
Now, in the latest development one council has stepped forward and proposed reducing pay for sleep in work. In the official communication, seen by VODG, the council is proposing a sleep in rate at around £4 per hour once tax and national insurance have been accounted for.
Chair of the Voluntary Organisations Disability Group, Steve Scown said:
“We know that when one local authority makes changes to its payment practices, others may soon follow. For providers to be put on notice that the salaries of their staff could be reduced, at a time when the sector is still waiting for official guidance cannot be right. We call on government, and the responsible Ministers, to acknowledge the sector’s concerns and urgently deal with the situation. This issue will not go away and is set to intensify if left unaddressed.”