Brexit: Care providers say the number of EU workers is drastically falling

Providers of social care in the UK have seen a "frightening" decline in EU nationals applying for care jobs

BBC Newsnight has reported that private care company, Peach Nursing, currently employs just one British carer out of 44. Jane Stewart from Peach Nursing said a drop in EU nationals applying for jobs meant that for the first time in 14 years she was forced to tell people: “I can’t help you.”

However, the Department for Health and Social Care said the numbers of EU nationals working in the sector had increased since the 2016 Brexit referendum.

The department also said they “recognise the invaluable contribution of care workers” and they “remain focused on reaching a deal with the EU which benefits the health and care workforce”.

The Institute for Public Policy and Research (IPPR) reported last year that the shortfall of staff is due to Brexit’s limits on EU migration and recruitment issues ‘inextricably linked to low pay and poor working conditions’ implemented by care homeowners and home care providers.

Linking the issue to government’s underfunding of social care, the IPPR’s new report stated: ‘Our modelling shows that – on current trends, and assuming the ending of freedom of movement – there will be a shortage of nearly 400,000 workers by 2028 [in adult social care]’.

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