Ladyman: provision of social care must be volunteers' role

Charities will have to enlist volunteers to meet the spiralling demand for social-care provision, according to the Minister for Community, Stephen Ladyman.

Speaking at the Funding the Future conference last week, ahead of publication of a green paper on social care, Ladyman said that voluntary organisations had a "huge role to play", but warned that paid staff couldn't do everything.

"We have to look hard at how we get the staff we need and how we train them, but we have to concede that we will never be able to meet demand solely with professional carers," he said.

Ladyman added that the green paper would concentrate on what the users of social care wanted and needed, and would move away from a risk-averse approach. He said the Government was looking at the idea of personalised budgets where adults could choose a combination of direct payments and services - some provided by the voluntary sector.

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