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Implementation of Scottish National Living Wage for Care Workers and PA’s

How the new Scottish National Living Wage for Care Workers and PAs is going to be implemented and how best to support PA employers to be ready for this?

What can you share about what you’re doing in your area and any tips you have for others?

You may remember that we recently told you about the ‘Living Wage Commitment’, which came into effect on 1st October 2016. This commitment was made by Scottish Government and Local Government to ensure that the Living Wage of #8.25 per hour is paid to all care workers providing direct care and support to adults in care homes, care at home, and housing support. Personal assistants employed via Self-Directed Support (Option 1 – Direct Payment) were not explicitly included in this commitment.

The good news for next year is that the government has made a new commitment, which does now include Personal Assistants:

‘#100 million has been identified to support the continued delivery of the Living Wage and sustainability within the sector. This resource enables the increased rate of #8.45 per hour to be paid, from at least the 1st of May 2017, to care workers supporting adults in care homes and care at home / housing support settings and should now include, where it hasn’t already, adult day care workers and personal assistants through arrangements made where care is provided.

Following our guidance in September regarding the payment of sleepover hours it is expected that, as minimum sleepovers are compliant as per HMRC guidelines. As stated before, this is for a transitional period with the ambition being that all hours be paid at the rate of the Living Wage. In this, we are listening to our stakeholders and recognise that stability whilst reform takes places is crucial. We will continue to support partnerships and providers in reforming sleepovers and looking to sustainable models of care based on improving outcomes for individuals. As part of the resource for Living Wage #10m was identified for sleepovers. Following learning from this process in regards to sleepovers this year it has been agreed that this may be revisited in-year to focus on the cost of implementing and whether this resource has been adequate. Formal negotiations for the settlement took place between the Scottish Government and COSLA.’

So, in summary, from 1st May 2017, Local Authorities should support PA employers to pay PAs at the rate of #8.45 per hour as well as pay sleepover rates at the National Minimum Wage level for each hour worked.

See a copy of the letter from the Scottish Government and COSLA.