Extra financial support will be given to social care workers in Scotland during the Coronavirus emergency, Health Secretary Jeane Freeman MSP announced.
More than 85% of care workers in Scotland work for private companies or charitable providers of care, who are responsible for their own employees. However, the
Scottish Government has stepped in to provide additional funding to ensure all social care workers receive enhanced sick pay if they test positive for COVID-19.
Where any social care worker dies without death in service cover in their contracted pension arrangements, the Scottish Government will provide a one-off payment of £60,000 to a named survivor.
Ms Freeman said:
“Social Care staff provide a critical and valuable service, never more apparent than during this emergency period.
“While some employers offer employment contracts closer to the Scottish Government’s fair work principles, it is clear that others do not. In recognition of the current exceptional circumstances and in order to ensure that social care workers are given the urgent support they deserve, we will develop a funded scheme for care workers in respect of sick pay and death in service benefits.
“These fair work issues and how they are realised in commissioning contracts will require to be addressed but, in current circumstances, my focus now is on fairness for the care workers affected.
“We continue to work with local government, social care providers and trades unions on further details of the plans over the course of next week.”
Kenneth Gibson MSP added:
“This decision will be welcomed by the staff who provide a critical and valuable service in Cunninghame North’s 21 care homes, and their families.
“We know that the social care sector has been hit exceptionally hard by the coronavirus pandemic and it continues to be a challenging environment to work in.
“The Scottish Government continually works make the lives of those in social care easier and safer. Only last week, clinical oversight requirements were announced and the week prior, it allocated £1,339,000 to North Ayrshire’s Care Sector.
“The support announced now is another logical step to take to support social care workers and their families.”