Tony Blair slammed for continually moving social care ministers

Peter Beresford has lambasted prime minister Tony Blair for continually moving ministers with the brief for social care to other departments and not giving them time to get to grips CC Live logo articlewith the portfolio.

The professor of social policy and director of the Centre for Citizen Participation at Brunel University made his comments at Community Care Live after Blair’s major cabinet reshuffle earlier this month.

Liam Byrne, who was care services minister for less than year, was moved to the Home Office to oversee policing, with Ivan Lewis taking his place at the Department of Health.

Speaking at a session on standing up for social care Beresford said: “Byrne’s predecessors were all soon promoted out of social care because they were good. Are the government waiting until they get a bad one for him or her to stay in post? Is social care a third division football club waiting for the first division to poach our stars?”

He added that social care still fails to make it on to the political agenda, losing out to health instead. “What is it about social care that when it is part of a major reshuffle it isn’t news and doesn’t matter. If this was happening in health it would make the front pages.”

* For more of Peter Beresford’s views visit his blog on

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