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British Red Cross welcomes social care reform

03 May 2010
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Henry Makiwa

telephone: +44(0)207 877 7479 /  or / 07659 145 095 (out of hours)

The British Red Cross has welcomed today’s (30/03/2010) launch of the Government’s White Paper on social care needs of the elderly and the disabled in England, believing it represents a real chance to strengthen the delivery of social care for millions of vulnerable people across England.

George McNamara, Head of public policy UK at the British Red Cross, said: “The proposals set out in the paper provide a concrete step towards increasing preventative services and greater independent living for the vulnerable.”

An ageing population is undoubtedly putting increasing pressures on the country’s care and support system and meeting the social care needs of the elderly, along with increasing numbers of people with disability and long-term conditions is one of the biggest challenges facing policy-makers today.

McNamara continued: “We know from our experience that many of those facing a social care crisis often want to stay in their own home for as long as possible. This is why we focus our services to give time limited, intensive support in a personalised way at the earliest possible stage.  In doing so, this helps prevent admission to hospital in many cases.”

“As a volunteer-led organisation, we also recognise the potential benefits that volunteers can bring toward delivery of a more flexible and individual approach to social care. We have seen at first hand the many benefits of providing this kind of support; to the individual, as well as the family or carer,” he explained.

The charity recently announced its first ever manifesto calling on all political parties to support the Red Cross’ vision of a world where everyone gets the help they need in a crisis. Know as “Saving Lives, Changing Lives: a call to action”, the manifesto asks for politician’s positive action and support in several key areas including emergency response, overseas aid, health and social care and first aid.

For more information or a copy of the manifesto go to: or Read our full manifesto on the ePolitix website:


Notes to editors

The British Red Cross helps people in crisis, whoever and wherever they are. We are part of a global voluntary network, responding to conflicts, natural disasters and individual emergencies.

We enable vulnerable people in the UK and abroad to prepare for and withstand emergencies in their own communities. And when the crisis is over, we help them to recover and move on
with their lives.