LABOUR candidate Jeff Kenner says Stratford pensioners would have to contribute around £160,000 towards their own care under the Conservative’s ‘dementia tax’.
Theresa May recently announced a u-turn on her party’s social care policy by promising an ‘absolute limit’ on the amount people will have to pay for their care, but has not said what the cap will be set at.
Mr Kenner said: “Under Theresa May’s ‘dementia tax’, as proposed in the Tory manifesto, a Stratford pensioner would on average have to contribute £160,000 towards their own care costs.
“Theresa May has now carried out a u-turn to set a cap on the size of the ‘dementia tax’ but know one is the wiser as to the level at which this will be set.
“By contrast, Labour has committed to spend an extra £45 billion on the NHS and social care over five years. Labour will stand up for older people and has made five key pledges to ensure older people have the security and dignity they deserve – secure pensioner incomes with the triple-lock on state pensions, protect the Winter Fuel Allowance and free bus passes for pensioners, an extra £45 billion for the NHS and social care, no rise in the state pension age beyond 66 and justice for women born in the 1950s hit by the five-year rise in pension age.
“Pensioners would be at least £330 worse off under the Tories’ new Double Lock had it been in place between 2013/14 and 2017/18, compared with the basic state pension being uprated by the Triple Lock. Under Theresa May’s plan, ten million people – five out of six pensioners – are set to lose their Winter Fuel Payments, worth up to £300.
“The Tories really have it in for older people at this election. They want to ditch the triple-lock, take away winter-fuel payments for many pensioners and introduce a ‘dementia tax’.
“But Theresa May hasn’t clarified the level of the cap that older people would need to contribute towards their own social care.
“I’ve lost track about how many times the Prime Minster has changed her mind in this election – who is to say she wouldn’t change her mind about a cap?
“The average cost of a house in Stratford-on-Avon is £259,998 – that would mean on average, under the Tories’ initial proposals, that an older person could be asked to pay up to £159,998 towards their own social care costs. Leaving many people with little of their life savings to pass on to their families.
“Only Labour is standing up for older people at this general election, whilst the Tories are taking pensioners for granted by thinking their votes are already in the bag.”