You might have been following the debate on improving human rights protection for older people in care homes, as part of the Health and Social Care Bill which is currently going through Parliament. Hard though it is to believe, older people in care homes who have to pay for their own care are currently not protected by human rights law in the same way as those who have their care paid for by the Council. An amendment (Clause 48) was proposed to remove this loophole. Unfortunately the Government did not accept the amendment and Clause 48 was narrowly voted down in the Committee Stage.
Since that happened, the Joint Committee on Human Rights, a group of cross-party MPs and Peers, has echoed Age UK’s calls to close the loophole and has proposed a new amendment which would achieve a similar result to the old Clause 48. We now need to convince MPs to vote for this amendment at the Care Bill’s Report Stage, due to take place in the next few weeks.
That means there is still time to sign the national petition to make human rights equal for everyone who needs care. We have had 16,000 signatures already and this has been noticed by MPs and Ministers who recognise that this is now a public issue. However, we need more signatures to keep that pressure going. If you are concerned about the human rights of people in care homes and have not had a chance to sign the petition yet, please sign it at: http://bit.ly/1dNah6l