Kettering MP: 'Why I rebelled against Government's care cost cap'
Philip Hollobone was one of 19 Tories to rebel against his own party
Kettering MP Philip Hollobone says people in the town stand to lose out compared to wealthier areas when it comes to covering care costs under a controversial Government proposal.
The Conservative was one of just 19 Tory rebels in last night's controversial vote, which saw Prime Minister narrowly succeed in getting backing for a change to social care reforms.
The move would see nobody have to pay more than £86,000 in their lifetime for care, regardless of wealth, under a new cap from October 2023 and was backed by 272 votes to 246.
But opposition party critics, and Mr Hollobone, said that this would disproportionately affect those in areas where house prices are lower .
He told the Northants Telegraph he welcomes reforms to improve adult social care for the elderly but explained why he rebelled against his party last night.
He said: "Under the present system, one in seven adults over 65 currently faces paying more than £100,000 for care over their lifetime, whereas as a result of these reforms there will be an £86,000 cap on the maximum amount people have to pay.
"Whilst it is true that these reforms will mean that everyone will be better off under the new arrangements compared to the current system, the Government has watered down the improvements so that people in areas such as Kettering, with lower house prices than in London and the south east, stand to lose a greater proportion of their assets to pay for their care than people living in areas with higher house prices.
"I voted against these watered down proposals, because even though elderly people would be better off than now, the change that the Government has introduced would mean that those with low to moderate levels of assets will get proportionately less protection than wealthier people from catastrophically high care costs.”
Under the plans, people with assets of less than £20,000 will not have to contribute anything to their care - up from the current level of £14,250 - while those with assets worth up to £100,000 will be eligible to receive some local authority support, up from £23,250.
The government previously announced that only the payments people made out of their own pocket, and not those from councils, would count towards the cap.
Northampton South MP Andrew Lewer was another of the Tory rebels to vote against the Government.
Those voting for the proposal included Corby MP and Government minister Tom Pursglove, Northampton North's Michael Ellis and South Northamptonshire's Andrea Leadsom.
No vote was recorded for Wellingborough MP Peter Bone.