The Association of Directors of Adult Social Services has introduced Harold Bodmer, Executive Director of Adult Social Services at Norfolk County Council, as its new President. He succeeds Ray James, Enfield Council’s Director of Health, Housing and Adult Social Care, who welcomed him to his new role at the Association’s annual Spring Seminar today.
Addressing his fellow ADASS members for the first time as Association President, Harold reflected on the honour of taking on the role and thanked Ray James for the work of the previous year, before considering how the adult social services landscape had changed in the ten years since ADASS was established. He emphasised the enormity of the financial challenges now facing the sector, arguing:
“We need a social movement about social care, a campaign that starts now and reaches out over the next few years. We need to go into the next Comprehensive Spending Review with it being an absolute given that social care needs to be properly funded.”
Harold informed attendees that this year, he would be focussing on funding pressures, integration, social work education and training, market sustainability and the homecare workforce, and contributing to the new carers’ strategy.
He went on to say:
“Sustainability of home care is certainly what keeps me awake at night. We need to up the level of debate about this, increase the volume, share best practice, run innovation masterclasses, whatever we need to do. We will never bring any meaning to integration while the bulk of home care is still based on time and task and on the whole unconnected to the mainstream NHS provider services.
The need to think ahead to the future model of social care, integrated with the NHS, was also key, with Harold highlighting:
“In my view this is about strengthening our links with communities, with housing, and with individuals, ensuring that democratic accountability is retained, so that in an integrated world of health and social care, the values we hold dear are retained.”