Mark Drakeford, Minister for Health and Social Services
The Welsh Government has today launched an important consultation about ways the quality of social care can be improved by addressing key workforce issues such as the minimum wage and zero hour contracts. The results of this consultation will be available to the incoming Government later this year.
On 7 July, the Minister for Public Services announced the publication of research into the use of zero hours contracts in devolved public services. The research found varied circumstances in which zero hours contracts are used across public services and highlighted domiciliary care as a sector which warranted further consideration and action.
On 15 July 2015, I announced research into how key issues, such as zero hours contracts, affect the desirability of domiciliary care as a career and how these issues may impact on quality of care. The research has explored the potential relationship between the terms and conditions of the workforce and quality of domiciliary care. The research now provides a foundation for a consultation on policy options to strengthen the quality of domiciliary care by improving the recruitment and retention of domiciliary care workers in Wales.
A summary of the interim research findings was published yesterday. The full report will be published in February. The research establishes a clear relationship between domiciliary care employment terms and conditions and quality of care.
Today, therefore, a consultation is launched on potential actions to improve the recruitment and retention of domiciliary care workers in Wales. The ideas set out in the consultation document have been informed by the research. Improving the recruitment and retention of domiciliary care workers will not be simple and will need to be tackled in a number of ways. I am, therefore, very keen to receive views from a wide range of stakeholders and in particular to hear the views of people who use domiciliary care services and who work within domiciliary care. Please let us have your views by 5 April.