Somerset County Council has launched a parliamentary petition that calls for cross-party discussions on social care funding before Christmas.
The council is urging fellow local authorities, care providers and the public to “stand up for care” and sign the petition, describing the issue as a “national emergency”.
The Stand Up For Care petition has the support of all the County Council’s political party leaders and was launched at a meeting of the authority’s Cabinet committee by Leader of the Council, Councillor David Fothergill.
“This is not just a Somerset issue, but we are proud to be the authority that stands up for care” he said.
“An issue this important needs political parties to come together to find a way forward, so I’m delighted that this petition has the support of all the parties and at the County Council.
“I urge everyone to go online and sign it. This takes just a few seconds but you could be contributing to change that last lifetimes.”
The petition, which can be found here, needs 10,000 signatures to trigger a formal response from the government, and 100,000 for it to be considered a debate for parliament.
Earlier this year, the council was at the centre of a two-part Panorama documentary which made national headlines, highlighting the pressures and difficult decisions that come with meeting growing demand for social care at a time of limited funding.
Somerset County Council allowed the film crew to spend ten months with its social care staff and the resulting films received significant national media coverage, kick-starting political debate on the subject.