Wales politics

£20m extra for social care spending in Wales

Hands holding money

An extra £20m a year is to be spent on social care in Wales.

The Welsh Government funding comes after the chancellor gave £2bn extra for social care in England.

A total of £8m will be used in a bid to prevent children entering care. Councils will also get £3m more to pay for respite for carers.

Plaid Cymru welcomed "any additional investment" for what it called an "underfunded service".

The Welsh Local Government Association (WLGA) has previously warned that rising social care costs could force some councils to merge.

In a statement, Public Health Minister Rebecca Evans said: "We are acutely aware of the pressures being faced by the sector and by local government.

"It is vital that we support the development of social services that are sustainable for the future.

'Unprecedented challenges'

"There is no doubt that the public sector is facing unprecedented challenges. We need to continue to build our resilience."

Part of the money will go towards supporting families and children on the "edge of care" and improve "outcomes for children leaving care".

A WLGA spokesperson said the additional funding represented a continued recognition that the "health of the population depends on far more than just health care services alone".

He said: "The WLGA will continue to work with Welsh Government and make a case for sustainable solutions to the challenges in social care as an issue of national strategic importance.

"We also look to the new UK government following the forthcoming general election to come up with sustainable solutions to the longer term funding of social care and ensure that the hard choices required are made to safeguard vital provision for children and older people now and into the future."

A Plaid Cymru spokesperson said: "The Welsh Government had little option but to increase funding given the pressures the NHS faced.

"For too long the Conservative party has failed to understand how vital social care is in keeping the NHS functional, and the additional finance is too little too late."

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