The Cavendish Coalition has set out its concerns around the immigration proposals due to come into force next year.
The organisation states that social care services could face a ‘staffing blackhole’ if temporary arrangements are not introduced to manage the initial impact of the Government’s Immigration Bill.
In a letter to the Prime Minister, the Cavendish Coalition has laid out its ‘grave concerns’ about the current immigration proposals, detailing the damaging impact they could have on the care sector and the people who rely on its services, particularly as the country heads towards what is expected to be a challenging winter while dealing with the ongoing threat of coronavirus.
Despite one in eleven posts across the sector being unfilled, and the contribution of these essential key workers being widely acknowledged during the pandemic, social care is still not on the shortage occupation list.
The coalition of national bodies is calling for the Government to introduce a ‘transitional solution’ that would avoid a cliff-edge scenario for international recruitment to social care while efforts continue to expand the domestic workforce.
Danny Mortimer, Co-convenor of the Cavendish Coalition and Chief Executive of NHS Employers said, 'If adult social care wasn’t in a precarious position before coronavirus, it certainly is now. One in five health and care workers have said that they are likely to leave their roles after the pandemic, which is pretty worrying given that this was a sector that entered it with 122,000 vacancies.
'The Government has undermined the vital role of social care in its proposed points-based system for immigration, which will effectively turn the tap off international recruitment in an instant and create a staffing blackhole at a time when these services are expected to be more stretched than ever before.
'And if social care suffers, so will the NHS with understaffed services likely to lead to a very real risk of hospital beds becoming filled during winter as the NHS attempts to pick itself up and resume services that it had to pause because of the initial phase of the virus.
'It is critical that the Government ensure a transitional solution is in place for social care in January 2021 to navigate the gap between the introduction of the new immigration system and a longer term plan and funding settlement for social care in England
'Currently, we are heading towards an alarming destination with no immediate solution and so, we are urging the Prime Minister to act.'