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Covid-19: ‘Welsh Government has finally listened to our call to better support social care staff, but it must go further’

The Shadow Social Care Minister – Janet Finch-Saunders AM – has welcomed the announcement today (May 1) by the Welsh Government that it will give a £500 bonus to social care staff.

She said:

“I have been calling for better support and recognition for the 64,000-odd people working in the social-care sector for some time, and it’s great that the Welsh Government has listened to my call to reward them.

“However, this really needs to be seen in context of the award made to porters and cleaners at the Dragon’s Heart field hospital in Cardiff by NHS Wales. These people will be doing an arduous and emotionally taxing job – just as care workers do.

“The Dragon's Heart porters and cleaners will be on £12.75 to £13.75 an hour (some £4 to £5 above minimum wage) with the potential for a £2-per-hour bonus on every hour already worked if there for three months. Assuming a rate of £4 per hour over the minimum wage for a 40-hour week, they will receive at least an additional £640 a month. 

“So, by comparison, the £500 one-off payment to our wonderful care workers, who do so much for our loved ones day in and day out, doesn’t seem that generous after all.

“Therefore this must be seen as the first stage and not the completion of the recognition these dedicated people deserve, so I will continue to press the Welsh Government to follow up this commitment with more action, and within timeframes.”

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