Health and Social Care

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:06 pm on 16th January 2020.

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Photo of Jon Ashworth Jon Ashworth Shadow Secretary of State for Health and Social Care 12:06 pm, 16th January 2020

We have long argued for a cap on care costs, but of course the Government, as the right hon. Gentleman says, dropped their support for this policy.

On the issue of social care, the Prime Minister said at the Dispatch Box yesterday that he wanted cross-party talks, although in his BBC interview the day before he said that he had a plan that he would bring forward in the next 12 months. The Government want a consensus. I say to the Government that the Labour party has proposed free personal care. We have a version of free personal care in Scotland. There is a similar version of it in Northern Ireland. There is a version of it in Wales. The House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee, which includes Thatcherites such as Michael Forsyth and Norman Lamont, alongside the former Labour Chancellor, Alistair Darling, has proposed free personal social care. There already is a political consensus. It is the Secretary of State and the Prime Minister who stand outside that consensus. If the Secretary of State wants to engage with us on that basis, then my hon. Friend Barbara Keeley is happy to do so. I will now take the intervention from the former Chief Whip.