It has been confirmed today that the court of appeal have overturned a tribunal decision made in 2015 to pay care and support workers national living wage for sleep-ins and back dating their pay for 6 years.
Mencap, a nationwide care provider and Care England, who represent independent social care providers, challenged the tribunal ruling and today successfully overturned the original decision.
I worked lots of sleep in’s most often as a support worker. I would be paid £25 for the night and if I was disturbed more than 3 times in that night I would be paid minimum wage or at the night rate if different. I was working for an care agency at the time, so I knew the pay and chose to go to work at that rate. To be honest I was pleased to be paid to sleep!
But what if you are contracted and are not given the choice to accept a wage that is less that the minimum wage, is that fair or valuing already low paid care staff?
The estimated cost to care providers across the UK is £400m, which Care Englands solicitors, Anthony Collins Soliticors, says would cause two thirds of care providers to go bankrupt and put 1.2 million vulnerable people at risk.
There seems to be strong arguments on both side of this debate.
Shouldn’t all care workers be paid a minimum wage for being at work?
Many care providers in the UK are already struggling to meet financial commitments in an under funded care sector, is back dating sleep in pay worth the risk of destroying our fledgling care sector?
What do you think?