Public supports increasing care workers’ pay

Wednesday 7th August 2019

A new poll by the GMB union has found overwhelming public support for increasing social care workers’ pay.

Four in five believe social care staff should be treated ‘the same as NHS workers’ on salaries, training and working conditions.

The average NHS Scotland employee can expect a salary of just over £32,000 compared to £18,000 in the care sector.

The research is being released as the trade union launches a ‘massive’ new survey of care workers.

Polling company Survation found 86% of British adults believe carers should be well paid and well trained, with 83% saying that pay should reflect the highly skilled and increasingly complex nature of care work.

A majority backed higher taxes on large businesses and wealthy individuals to pay for more public spending on social care.

However just 36% supported increasing National Insurance contributions paid by workers.

All social care staff in Scotland should be paid the Living Wage of £9 an hour under government initiatives aiming to boost wages in the sector, though progress in extending this to workers on overnight shifts has been slow.

Kelly Andrews of GMB said: “Throughout our lives, we will all come into contact with care - be it our mums and dads needing help, working as a carer or knowing someone who does. Ultimately we will all need it ourselves.

“GMB will not stop unless this vital service is professionalised.  

“The dedicated carers we all rely on need the pay and training they deserve.”