Writes Maria Ahmed
Gordon Brown today pledged to continue the government’s personalisation of public services including giving people more control over social care budgets.
In his speech to the Labour party conference, the prime minister said older people would be given more choice managing chronic care and a wider range of services.
Brown extended the personalisation theme to children, promising one-to-one English and Maths tuition for 300,000 pupils as part of a 10-year children’s plan.
He also outlined plans for one-to-one support for families and young people in trouble led by the voluntary sector.
Brown reaffirmed his committment to abolishing child poverty and said the pre-budget report would set out the next steps.
The prime minister also announced an expansion of nurse-family partnerships that are being rolled out to help deprived families.
He promised the new carers commission would “hear the call for change” from millions of carers and do more to provide respite care, training for carers and better pension rights, with a “new priority” of caring for disabled children.
His key message for crime and punishment was “punish and prevent,” including a five-year sentence for anyone over 18 illegally carrying a gun and intensive education schemes on guns and knives in schools.
Brown struck a calmer emphasis on the former prime minister’s rhetoric on antisocial behaviour, saying that respect “must be a two way street.”
He said unclaimed assets in dormant bank accounts would be used to build new youth centres and the goverment would invest over £670 million for places for young people to go.
But the language of rights and responsibilities that marked his predecessor’s era remained strong.
“I believe we have not done enough in the last ten years to emphasise that in return for the rights we all have, there are responsibilities we all owe,” Brown said.