21 Oct 2021

VODG responds to £162.5m funding announcement for workforce retention and recruitment

21 October 2021 In response to the government announcement that adult social care will benefit from £162.5m of new funding to help workforce retention and recruitment, Dr Rhidian Hughes, Chief Executive of the Voluntary Organisations Disability Group (VODG), said:

“This is a positive step towards alleviating some of the current workforce pressures facing voluntary sector providers of disability services and is to be welcomed. However, it’s crucial that the government does not now think that the recruitment and retention challenges are now over. Far from it.

“As an infrastructure organisation supporting over 100 charities, we are hearing first-hand about the challenges in securing staff to deliver essential care. We have shared our workforce intelligence with the Department of Health and Social Care and this highlights the extent to which voluntary sector providers are grappling with high turnover rates, rising vacancy rates, and competition from other low pay sectors. It is encouraging that the government has lent a listening ear to the sector and committed this funding, but we have already reached the point where charities are not taking on new services in some areas, and we could see charitable-run services becoming unviable if we cannot secure the workforce to deliver care.

The Association of Directors of Adult Social Services calculate that the funding equates to around £100 per worker in England. This calculation clearly shows that further funding must urgently be brought forward.“Ahead of the Chancellor’s Comprehensive Spending Review, we call on the government to go beyond the short-term, quick-fix approach that we can only hope will help ease some of the immediate pressure, and to instead act to provide sufficient funds to enable state funded services to be commissioned at levels that enable the workforce to be properly rewarded for the work they do, long into the future.” VODG Media Centre