Matt Hancock has written an open letter to the social care workforce, thanking them for their continued and vital work during the coronavirus pandemic.
The Health and Social Care Secretary, who is in isolation after testing positive for Covid-19 last week, praised care workers for “going the extra mile” to make sure the vulnerable people they rely on are supported in “incredibly challenging circumstances”.
“Thank you in advance for the difficult decisions you will have to make that will keep as many people as possible safe. Thank you for taking on extra shifts to cover for those who need to isolate or have their own caring responsibilities,” he said.
“Thank you for doing the right thing by isolating if you or somebody you live with has symptoms. Thank you for everything you are doing this week, next week and in the months to come.
“We face more difficult times ahead and I know you will have been personally impacted by the measures we have had to take to reduce the spread of Covid-19. Whilst many people are now staying at home, I know that is not an option for most of you as your work, caring for others, cannot be done from home.”
Hancock said the government is committed to doing “whatever is needed” to make social care workers’ lives easier during this period, including making parking on council-owned on-street spaces and car parks free for the workforce.
“The government is releasing advice and information updates daily and we are working round the clock to make sure you and your employer have the information, equipment and resources you need,” he added.
Read the full letter here.
Meanwhile, Unison, the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) and the Local Government Association (LGA) are urging the Health and Social Care Secretary to “move faster” to provide protective equipment for all social care workers to ensure their safety.
A letter to Hancock from the LGA and ADASS cited reports of PPE stock failing to reach social care workers despite reports of deliveries.