Tory Deputy Leader of DCC, Richard Bell, says there is no social care crisis in County Durham
Tory Deputy Leader of DCC, Richard Bell, says there is no social care crisis in County Durham

“There is no adult social care crisis in County Durham…” the Conservative Deputy Leader of Durham County Council, Cllr Richard Bell, stated in an all council meeting earlier this month.

Bell also asked that councillors

“take their information from Council reports and not ‘Primary School level BBC reports.”

The Conservatives have long been disconnected from the truth of the social care crisis with Prime Minister Boris Johnson promising a comprehensive overhaul on the steps of 10 Downing Street in his first speech as PM.

“We will fix the crisis in social care once and for all with a clear plan we have prepared.”

– Boris Johnson, 24th July 2019

As of this article, no plan for fixing social care has materialised, in fact, it recently emerged that such plans would not appear before the House of Commons until at least the autumn sitting. The 2nd anniversary of the PM’s promise passed on Saturday 24th July 2021, in this time 1.4 million people have been refused social care.

The Deputy Leader of DCC, Richard Bell,  says that there is no crisis in County Durham. In a shocking video clip that was taken from a recent full council meeting,  the Lib Dem/Tory Coalition voted down a proposal to write to the Prime Minister asking him to resolve “the funding crisis in Adults and Children’s Social Care and the uncertainty, potential risk and financial burden it creates for this council and the people of County Durham.”

Mary responded on social media saying

The Conservative Deputy Leader of Durham County Council says “there’s no social care crisis” and councillors “must take their information from our reports.” I wonder if Cllr Bell would meet with me and my constituents who’d give him a very different, first hand account of how broken social care actually is. Unless of course he thinks our views as carers are “primary school level” too.

Mary recently conducted a survey to ascertain the views of how valued local carers felt. None of the respondents to that survey felt fully valued as a carer. This statement from the man who will be leader of the county council, next year highlights the extent to which neglect of carers is institutional. The carers of City of Durham need social care reform and they need it now. It is incumbent on the county council and the government to act to address this.

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