Sajid Javid hints tax rise could pay for long-awaited social care plan as he says he won’t let ‘ideology’ stand in the way of a ‘sustainable settlement’
- Sajid Javid said there must be a ‘sustainable’ settlement to social care funding
- Health Secretary suggested ‘ideology’ would not prevent him backing tax rise
- Boris Johnson and Rishi Sunak believed to be wrangling over the funding of plan
Sajid Javid hinted that a tax rise could pay for the long-awaited social care plan today as he insisted he wants a ‘sustainable settlement’.
The Health Secretary said he will not let ‘ideology’ stand in the way of a solution, amid growing pressure for the government to lay out proposals.
The Chancellor is thought to be insisting that the potential £10billion a year cost is covered by measures to raise revenues, rather than adding to the debt or cutting other spending.
The UK’s national debt has soared above £2trillion since the pandemic hit, and there are huge demands on the public purse across different priorities.
Health Secretary Sajid Javid said he will not let ‘ideology’ stand in the way of a solution, amid growing pressure for the government to lay out proposals
Mr Johnson first promised to push through social care reforms when he entered Downing Street two years ago, but there are fears progress has stalled again
But the Tories pledged at the last manifesto that VAT, national insurance and income tax will be frozen until at least the next election.
Mr Johnson first promised to push through social care reforms when he entered Downing Street two years ago, but there are fears progress has stalled again.
Asked whether he would be opposed in principle to a tax increase, Mr Javid told the Sunday Telegraph: ‘In all my time in politics I haven’t let ideology blind me to doing the practical and the obvious. I think that’s as far as I’d go.’
He added: ‘It’s about getting the job done, sticking to your values and principles of course, but I’ve got to deal with the world as it is, and get a job done, and I’ll work with my colleagues to find the best way to do that.’
The Dilnot report, commissioned by then prime minister David Cameron, was included in the Conservatives‘ 2015 manifesto but it was dropped just two months after the election. Theresa May also failed to come forward with proposals.
Social care in England has also got worse over the past decade due to a combination of funding cuts and an increase in demand because of the ageing population.
There are now 1.7million more older people and 857,000 more adults with disabilities.
And since 2012/13, the earliest year for which comparable data are available, care workforce vacancies have shot up by 82 per cent.
There are now an additional 45,000 empty posts.
Boris Johnson (left) and Rishi Sunak (right) are believed to be have been wrangling over the way forward on the policy