Tories rocked by social care furore

The Conservative government has been forced onto the defensive following an outcry over its proposals for social care.

A wave of opposition greeted the government’s proposals in its General Election manifesto last week to scrap plans for a cap on social care costs for people with assets above £100,000.

John Stanley of the Bow Group Tory think tank told the BBC: “The impact on the core vote will be awful – what I call the ‘Tory Shire’.”

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The Liberal Democrats said the plans could force nine out of ten people to sell their homes to pay for their care.

The outcry has prompted jitters within senior Tory ranks after a poll published in the aftermath of their manifesto showed the government’s 20 point lead cut to single figures.

Prime Minister Theresa May told The Times that the proposals were fairer and protected the elderly from the fear that they would lose everything to pay for their care.

Under the government’s proposals the value of someone’s home will be included when assessing their assets for residential and domiciliary care.

Payments for both residential and domiciliary can be deferred until after death but ex Lib Dem pensions minister Sir Steve Webb has warned that many councils were failing to implement deferred payment agreements with residents.

Sir Steve said: “It is clear that there is already a lottery as to whether people facing significant care costs can exercise their legal right to defer their payments under the existing system.

“The government will need to investigate very quickly why the present system is not working properly, otherwise there is a danger of building a new system on very shaky foundations.”

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