Clwyd West MS Darren Millar has called on the First Minister to ensure there is a level playing field when it comes to bonus payments for care workers after discovering that some advocacy workers in Conwy and Denbighshire are not eligible.
Speaking in today’s meeting of the Welsh Parliament, Darren said his party very much supports the one off payment of £735, which workers have been receiving, but expressed concern that advocacy workers in Conwy and Denbighshire who work for a local charity are not set to receive it, despite those with the same role who are employed by local authorities being eligible.
“One of the things that has been welcomed by my party is the social care financial payment—the bonus payment—which many people are receiving in their pay packets this month. But those bonus payments must get through to everybody who is part of that social care workforce and that includes advocacy workers who are not employed directly by local authorities.
“Unfortunately, I've been informed by the Dewis Centre for Independent Living - which has offices in Colwyn Bay in my constituency and provides advocacy services to people with mental health problems and disabilities across the whole of Conwy and Denbighshire - that its advocates are not eligible for the bonus payment, while people in neighbouring local authorities who are advocates employed directly by councils are receiving these payments.
“That, to me, doesn't seem like a very level playing field. Can I ask, First Minister, will you look into this in order that those people who have been doing valuable work, going into people's homes at very difficult times during the pandemic, do have the opportunity to benefit from these bonus payments in recognition of their work?”
The First Minister told Darren that he was “willing to look into any anomaly”.