Plaid Cymru Welcomes U-turn on Extension of £500 carers’ Bonus – But It Shouldn’t Be Taxed
Plaid Cymru’s Delyth Jewell MS has welcomed the “overdue” news that the £500 bonus payment to carers will be extended to all care home staff, but insists that it should not be taxed.
The original £500 payment was only due to be paid to carers, but Plaid Cymru argued from the start that all care home staff should receive the payment since they’ve all played crucial roles in keeping residents safe and been exposed to the same risks.
While welcoming the change in tack from the Welsh Government, the bonus payment is due to be taxed by the Treasury since the UK Government refuses to make an exemption.
Plaid Cymru’s Shadow Local Government Minister Delyth Jewell MS said:
“This news is long overdue. Not to include ancillary staff was a blow to care home staff morale. Plaid Cymru is very glad that the Welsh Government have listened to our call to extend the £500 bonus payment to all care home staff - as should have been the case from the start.
“This again demonstrates how effective Plaid Cymru can be in opposition – and how we will be even more effective in government.
“Care homes have borne the brunt of the crisis so it’s only right that all staff who have played a key role in keeping residents safe should be rewarded for their efforts. This crisis has proven what was already obvious which is the crucial role that carers play in society, which is why Plaid Cymru believes that this should lead to care staff receiving parity of pay and conditions with NHS staff.”
“However the UK Government’s decision to tax this payment is cruel - they have the power to categorise the payment as a tax-free gift and must do so immediately. This sorry stand-off has exposed the weaknesses of the so-called United Kingdom and if Welsh Government truly wanted to ensure this payment was tax-free they would back a change to the devolution settlement. We shouldn’t have to ask Westminster for permission to give our carers the recognition they deserve.