Give them the money: is cash a route to empowerment?
Social Policy and Administration, 31, (1), . (doi:10.1111/1467-9515.00036).
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This article suggest it is important to unpack the notion of "empowerment" in community care so that the position of those who provide "hands-on" care is scrutinised alongside the empowerment of "users" of care. The particular case of the forthcoming Direct Payments legislation, whereby disabled people will be able to opt for cash rather than services and become employers of personal assistants, is considered. It is argued that both employers and employees in these care relationships are likely to be on low incomes, that the work is likely to be insecure and possibly unregulated, that there might be a problem of labour supply, and that in the long run, this form of employment might generate hardship for the workers so employed. Other forms of reconciling the interests of both users and "carers" are considered.
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