Care associations have teamed up to protest against local authority proposals not to increase fees for voluntary sector care providers next year.
"Each local authority comes to a separate agreement with providers about what inflation it's going to add to fees," said Des Kelly, director of the National Care Forum. "Early indications are that some local authorities are not going to increase fees at all."
Kelly said the decision would force providers to shoulder inflationary increases in wages and utilities themselves. "There's an expectation that not-for-profit providers can simply absorb these costs because they've got other ways of raising money," he said. "But they still have to operate in a commercial market."