Free personal care to be delayed

implementation of free personal care is likely to be delayed due to the
complexity of the process according to the chairperson of the implementation

Jay, director of social work and housing for West Dunbartonshire Council and
chairperson of the implementation group on free personal care, said: “The whole
subject is extremely technical and we have been looking at the timescale.” Jay
denied that the prospect of the delay was due to political or financial
concerns. Instead he cited the requirement to reassess the needs of 70,000
people and the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities’ plan to review
charging at the same time as just two examples of the complexity of the

said: “It is possible that once we have taken all this into account and
listened to all the various opinions from all the groups involved then a short
delay might be advantageous.” Jay would not indicate the length of any possible
delay since the decision on allowing an extension to the intended
implementation of spring 2002 is the prerogative of the Scottish executive.

the meantime, the dispute between Holyrood and Westminster on the payment of
attendance allowance to those in receipt of free personal care remains
unresolved.  Work and pensions secretary
Alistair Darling is still threatening to withhold the total value of £20m per
year. If this is the case, the executive will be forced to find the additional

spokesperson for the executive said: “The money for this policy has been put
aside and free personal care for the elderly will be implemented in full.”  In 2000-1 the executive under spent by

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