General Election 2017: Hornsey and Wood Green candidates debate social care crisis

Hornsey and Wood Green candidates (L-R): Catherine West, Helen Spiby-Vann, Sam Hall, organisers Sue

Hornsey and Wood Green candidates (L-R): Catherine West, Helen Spiby-Vann, Sam Hall, organisers Sue Hessel and Mary Langan, Dawn Barnes and Nimco Ali. Picture: ANNA NICHOLSON - Credit: Archant

A tax on salt, scrapping Trident and adding a penny to income tax were three solutions to the social care crisis put forward in a general election hustings yesterday.

Hornsey and Wood Green candidates settle in for the 90 minute hustings. Picture: ANNA NICHOLSON

Hornsey and Wood Green candidates settle in for the 90 minute hustings. Picture: ANNA NICHOLSON - Credit: Archant

Carers quizzed Hornsey and Wood Green’s parliamentary candidates on funding, respite centre closures and benefits during their coffee morning at Crouch End’s Abide Church Hall.

Helen Spiby-Vann of the Christian Alliance party promised a money raising salt tax and highlighted the benefits of “biblical marriage” as cures for social ills.

She commented that she wanted to ensure the constituency was a beautiful place to live in saying, “We can do that by doing things God’s way.”

Lib Dem candidate Dawn Barnes promised £12m for local social care budgets to “make carers’ daily lives a little less full on”.

The Green’s Sam Hall repeated his party’s pledge to scrap Trident to raise extra funds and give all carers a wage.

Both Lib Dem and Green Party candidates attacked Tory plans for a so-called “dementia tax” which could see people forced to sell their homes to pay care costs.

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Dawn Barnes said: “There’s a huge issue here. There are lots of people who don’t own a home. They cannot afford to get on the property ladder. They’re not going to have a home to sell.”

Sam Hall commented saying: “It’s going to get worse and worse if we follow this path.”

Labour Party candidate Catherine West outlined her record before grouping the absent Tory and UKIP candidates as a single party.

Mrs West said: “I’m not surprised they aren’t here today because I don’t think they prioritise [social care] spending.”

She ended saying: “This election we have a real choice - more austerity or relaxed austerity to some degree.”

The Women’s Equality Party candidate Nimco Ali pledged to make carers’ voices heard.

“Caring is seen as a burden not the glue that keeps the economy together. The key thing is to flip how we look at carers,” she said.

Speaking afterwards, Sue Hessel – who organised the hustings with the National Autism Society and Save Autism Services Haringey – said: “I’m hoping whoever wins exercises the strength and scrutiny Haringey’s local services require.”