Thanet home care company says industry recruitment crisis contributing to huge waiting lists

Care at home is provided by Aspire Home Carers Thanet

A recruitment crisis in the care sector partially caused by conditions for workers during covid is contributing to huge waiting lists, says a Thanet domiciliary care company.

Aspire Home Carers Thanet has been operating since July 2021 but says treatment of the care sector work force during covid has led to recruitment pressures which in turn has meant organisations like their own are currently unable to safely take on more clients despite growing demand unless they can bring in more staff.

Care supervisor Kiri Field said: “Recruitment in the care sector is in dire straits at the moment which could be attributed to how we were treated throughout covid. We were called ‘unskilled’ workers, organisations were under severe pressure, support and guidance was lacking, PPE was nowhere to be found, we were forced to have vaccinations and told we would no longer have jobs in our chosen field if we didn’t. Care workers felt undervalued and unappreciated but at Aspire Thanet this is not the case.

“Waiting lists for care in our community are huge but unfortunately, due to the recruitment crisis in the care sector, we cannot safely take on more clients no matter how much we wish we could care for more people.

“It is a difficult job and it does have unsociable hours but it’s unbelievably rewarding and it really is the best job to have.

“Many of our staff had poor experiences working in care and came to us with low confidence and felt they were considered ‘unskilled’. We disagree. Every care assistant is a skilled worker and doing the job really takes someone special.

“We treat our staff as they should be treated, like gold dust, we push them to be the best they can be in an environment they feel supported, encouraged and listened to.”

A survey carried out by the Homecare Association last August found a high level of concern among employers about inadequate workforce capacity to meet demand.

Some 843 homecare providers, large and small, state-funded and private-pay funded, across all regions of England responded to the survey and 95% said recruitment was harder than before the COVID-19 pandemic, with the majority (78%) saying that recruitment was “the hardest it has ever been”.

The survey found that 65% of homecare providers said more care workers were leaving their jobs than before the pandemic, including 29% who said that more care workers were leaving than ever before. Just 4% said that fewer care workers were leaving than before the pandemic.

A total of 89% of providers stated demand for their services had increased or significantly increased and almost half said the greatest challenge to recruitment was care workers’ pay and available terms and conditions of employment.

Like Aspire, some 38% of providers said they were unable to take on new work, with 57% saying they could take on some but not all new work.

Aspire staff with their youngsters getting ready for Margate carnival

Aspire Thanet is a domiciliary care company providing care to elderly and vulnerable clients in their own homes.

Kiri said: “We are a small and close-knit team working towards changing the way clients receive care and how staff are valued in their job roles. We believe a person-centred approach to care provides a culture where clients are truly active in their care and their wants and choices are listened to and respected and their independence is always promoted.

“We encourage our staff to ‘do more’ at every opportunity, for example we have assisted ‘collectors’ in clearing and maintaining a safe and clean environment, we’ve worked closely with agoraphobic clients to leave the home, we’ve donated clothing to clients that have been without and helped in small ways by a simple treat such as a chip shop take away.”

The Homecare Association is calling on government to take action, including to fund social care adequately so that homecare workers are paid fairly for the skilled roles they perform.

The Association says: “Failure to support older and disabled people with needs in their own homes risks avoidable deterioration in their health and well-being. This can result in crisis admissions to hospital or care homes, which are distressing for the individual concerned, costly for the state and may lead to further decline in function.

“Homecare providers are reporting that demand for homecare is rising in both the publicly and privately funded parts of the market.

“In addition to normal demographic pressures, this appears to be due to a combination of pent-up demand in the community following the pandemic; informal carers being unable to cope; hospitals seeking to deal with backlogs of elective cases; and public concerns about safety and accessibility of loved ones in care homes.”

Aspire Thanet is currently recruiting for caring staff to be a part of its team.

Find out more about Aspire Home Carers Thanet and available roles here


  1. Care in clients homes was once the preserve of local councils with home helps, family aids and meals-on-wheels etc. Staff were paid on nationally agreed pay scales and managers were usually promoted from the, ranks. There is no place for profiteering in care services and these duties should be returned to democratic control of local authorities.

    • Hear, Hear Keith! Its another example of the free market, and capitalism failing the community! The knock on affect is tens of thousands of healthy people bed blocking in hospital, after receiving treatment, because they have no where to go, or can’t have post op care at home! The Tory’s couldn’t run a bath!

  2. The other reason many people don’t enter the profession is more to so with the fact that other routes offer better money, less unsocial hours, and are “cleaner” jobs.

    Sadly, there still remains the taboo of the hygiene aspect of the work our younger cohort will shun at every turn – I mentioned this to daughter just the other and her immediate response was “yuk”, not that the pay was too low or the hours too long?

    I’m not so sure there is a solution to this negative imagery without legislation when there are better paying jobs. There will come a time when filial piety will have to come to bear and younger families will have no choice (through legislation) but to look after the parents that cared for them and quite rightly so.

    Far too many people are happy to dump their aging relatives (and responsibility) in whatever care organisation will take them.

    AFAIK, German legislation require children to take financial responsibility for their elders last time I checked.

    • Nothing taboo about personal care. Think of it as would you leave your own in urination to get ulcers that never heal. Or would you just leave them because its taboo.

  3. In my opinion, whose parents who were in care homes, is that the people who run the care homes, do not want to pay the wages to the people, which the majority are saints, work in the homes. Also, why should people, who have saved all their lives have to pay, and possible sell their house, and, give the majority of their afford to be in a care home.

    • Why should younger people pay for the care of asset rich elderly? It’s not fair to pass the costs on to those of working age who already face many challenges and have not benefitted from advantages enjoyed by the older generation (affordable housing, generous pensions)

      • I wonder if you could live of the “generous pension” (a maximum of 740.00 per month) you mention. These people have paid for this during there working life.

      • Cheerleader, not all elderly people are ‘asset rich’ by a long chalk. And even if they are and do sell their homes, that money only goes so far. And if they didn’t have to sell their homes then very often it would be their children or grandchildren who would get them when their elders die. When homes are sold, younger people may not be able to afford them.
        Not an unusual story: my 60 year old friend started caring for her parents 24/7 when they both became infirm. 3 years on, her father has died and she’s still caring for her mother. There was a house and it was sold, but both parents selfishly continued living after the funds had all but gone. She did have an interesting job and a life before all this but can’t see any way out as her mother’s complex needs would not be met by state-funded care.
        My friend is probably ancient herself by your estimation, but does not own property.
        Yeah, there is an understandable generational divide around property and pensions. But we older people never wanted it this way. Most of us want nothing more than to help younger people if at all possible. At this rate, your generation’s kids will be even worse off … we are all concerned about that possibility I think.

      • I’d go along with that if those that lived responsibly , took exercise , ate reasonably well and watched their weight didn’t have to pay towards the healthcare of those who make no such efforts and instead rely onnthe nhs and society to pander to them.
        Likewise paying to support those who are quite happy to live on benefits. Arbitrarily deciding that those who’ve been daft enough to save and make provision for themselves in life have to pay for what otherwise would be free is pure opportunism by society. Remember that on death anyone with substantial assests pays inheritance tax anyway.

        • Incredibly simplistic thinking. Are you seriously suggesting that illness and disability are moral failings? And let’s consider the threshold of inheritance tax of £325,000 but If you give away your home to your children or grandchildren increases to £500,000. What ever happened to ‘but for the grace of god, go I’? Empathy for fellow human beings? Fairly typical Thanet response in an area of great deprivation.

  4. It seems since covid and workers being laid off bosses thought their workers would just come back once things went back to normal.

    Like the airports, the staff have found better paying, better conditions, etc.

    Now airports , care sector cant get the staff because of their poor pay and working conditions. Its simply fixed is it ! Improve your pay and conditions to attract staff.

  5. You’re not including company pensions, many pensioners have more than one pension income and are property rich. Your point was why should they sell their house to pay for their care? My point is its not fair for working people who already face enough challenges to pay for the care of asset rich pensioners.

    • And my point is, why should people who saved up all their lives, paid into government pensions and possibly saved money into private pensions be forced to give all their hard earned savings to care homes. Would you be happy to see all your parents savings and house go this way ? I dont want to argue, but it just seems so unfair that this happens, whereas if you dont have savings or a property the government pays.

  6. I’m afraid I disagree. Yes I think if my parents need care their savings and house should pay for it. That’s fair, it would be their care for their benefit. I don’t think my children (their grandchildren) should foot the bill. That debt should not go to the younger generation just so older people can keep their houses, which they won’t need anyway if they’re in a care home.

    • ‘Yes I think if my parents need care their savings and house should pay for it.’ Point is, according to the article above, that they might not be able to get good care or, indeed, any. And the same may well be true for you, down the line.
      The care industry is in crisis and the effects of this are particularly devastating for those who do not have property to sell or who have used up all the money from a sale. How does all the generational envy relate to that?
      One day you may need someone to wipe your backside and, ideally, to help you to continue to live your life above and beyond the basic functions. Care workers should be really well-trained and well-rewarded.

  7. So who pays if you dont have savings or a house ? If it’s the government then your reasoning seems flawed. If it’s the children you have stated that’s unfair. What is the answer ?

  8. If you look at the council tax there is a, social care precept everyone pays for social care.

    Having worked many years in this profession,and its a hard physical, mental health profession. Do you know what a hoist is, or catheter care, stoma care? We dont get paid more for complex or pallative care. Most of us earn living wage.. What is that in the 21st century?

    Long waits with dbs checks with the disclosure and Barring Service on strike

    • Thank you for this. It’s a breath of fresh air reading a comment from someone who actually works in care. I’m a night carer for 37 Residential plus Dementia plus many more clients. 12 hour shifts and limited resources. But if I walk out after a shift and I’ve made 1 of those clients smile I’m a happy woman. Xx

  9. I wonder why the MPs which support Manston airpor as a way to solve unemployment for our youth dont fight for more training places and better working conditions. Care professions benefit many people and progression is posible. The kind of jobs people say will be posdible in Manson is not career jobs

  10. This is the most beautiful statement.
    “We treat our staff as they should be treated, like gold dust, we push them to be the best they can be in an environment they feel supported, encouraged and listened to.”

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