London Borough of Barking and Dagenham to sign UNISON ethical care charter

An agreement to be signed today (Thursday) between UNISON and the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham promises to deliver improved homecare for residents and more support for the borough’s homecare workers.

Signing the charter commits the council to allocating enough time for home visits so workers have time to talk to clients, not rush off to their next appointment. Visits will be scheduled to meet the needs of the clients so they get the care and support required.

Staff will also receive payment for their travel time between visits and be reimbursed for the costs of travel while at work. Homecare workers will get regular training so they can provide high quality care to clients.

UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said: “I know from personal experience the valuable work homecare staff do, day-in, day-out.

“It allows many people to remain at home when they would otherwise have to be looked after in expensive care homes.

“UNISON is leading the way in highlighting the importance of their work and in fighting to win the pay and conditions they deserve.”

Cabinet member for social care and health integration, councillor Maureen Worby, said: “This follows on our policy of ensuring our lowest paid staff get paid above the London living wage, and we look to have this replicated in our homecare providers. Our most vulnerable people deserve quality care and we will do everything we can with the money we have available to make that a reality.”

Notes to editors:
– UNISON’s ethical care charter is available here
– UNISON’s report Suffering alone at home can be found here.
– UNISON and Barking Council will sign the ethical care charter on Thursday 27 October between 12 and 2pm at Barking Learning Centre, 2 Town Square, Barking IG11 7NB.
– The national living wage as defined by the Living Wage Foundation is £9.40 in London and is due to be increased on Monday 31 October.

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