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Appeal for workers

Care sector urged to ‘raise its game’ to fill rising vacancies

Lynn Bell

Lynn Bell: perfect storm

A Scottish care provider wants the sector to “raise its game” as it struggles to attract staff to fill rising vacancies.

Hamilton-based LOVE@care has launched a major campaign to encourage more applicants to seek jobs in the sector, extend the appeal to those with non-care related backgrounds and persuade more men to consider careers as carers.

The number of vacancies in the sector is growing, with the latest data from the Care Inspectorate indicating that 38% of services report having vacancies, up 2% on the previous year. In addition, 45% of services with vacancies report problems filling them

Care at home services, care homes for older people, housing support services and care homes for adults reported vacancies above the national average.

There are clearly problems recruiting workers and in order to attract people we need make them aware of the considerable opportunities on offer

– Lynn Bell, LOVE@Care

The sector believes the problem will be exacerbated by Brexit which could lead to lower levels of immigration to Scotland. EU nationals account for 5.6% of staff in the care sector currently, with 42% of care services recruitment overseas coming from the EU.

A report from the STUC earlier this year also found that the workforce of the care sector will need to expand by 40% or 80,000 workers by 2035.

However, one in 10 social care workers are on zero hours contracts and 80% of early years practitioners and 50% of supervisors earning less than the real Living Wage of £9 per hour.

Lynn Bell, CEO of LOVE@care said: “This recruitment campaign comes against a ‘perfect storm’ of major staff shortages and the potential impact of Brexit, which will simply worsen the crisis we are already in.

“We are operating in a sector where there are clearly problems recruiting workers and in order to attract people we need make them aware of the considerable opportunities on offer and do more to enhance its reputation and ensure that it is valued as a career choice.

“We would urge all providers to raise their game look at solutions to create a sustainable and successful care sector, tackling the recruitment challenge.

“As an example, the career pathway we provide through training supports individuals gain the qualifications to move through the ranks of the care sector and help establish this as a career of choice, helping to improve people’s lives.”



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