On 28th October Lord Young of Cookham asked the Government “when they will publish their proposals for the reform of social care.” The Bishop of Carlisle asked a follow-up question:
The Lord Bishop of Carlisle: My Lords, given the long delay in the publication of proposals for the reform of social care, the impact of Covid-19 on carers and care homes, and the implications of reform for the future of the NHS—not to mention the political sensitivity and complexity of the subject, which has been referred to—does the Minister agree that the best way to achieve the cross-party consensus to which he just referred would be through an ad hoc Lords Select Committee, as already proposed from these Benches?
Lord Bethell (Con): My Lords, the development of a cross-party consensus is one of the great challenges that we have for the future. The mechanism that the right reverend Prelate suggests is imaginative, thoughtful and constructive, which I very much welcome and will take back to the department, but it is for the Prime Minister and the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to define that precise process. But I completely welcome having our feet held to the fire on this issue. It is a massive priority that is at the top of the Government’s agenda.