Empowering Service Users And Equality Analysis

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4.1.1 Empowering service users and equality
Based on the theories of neo-classical economics, Greener (2008) proposes two main types of benefits of the promotion of markets in welfare service delivery: empowering purchasing power of service users, and improving competition and efficiency of providers. These benefits of marketisation represent in the field of care for older people. The market provision empowers service users to ‘exercise consumer sovereignty’ (Greener, 2008) through greater opportunities of choices (Daly and Lewis, 2000; Drakeford, 2007). For example, Glendinning (2012) demonstrates that local governments in England emphasize individual choice and personalisation of service recipients.
While offering greater opportunities to
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Inequalities are embedded in marketisation of care due to ‘contracting out’ public provision to the market, insufficient financial support for purchasing services, and different levels of purchasing power among care users. Based on study in England, Sweden, and Australia, Brennan et al (2012) argue that there is no obvious results of lower costs after market mechanisms being applied in care sector, which exacerbated inequalities among service users based on their economic background. The empowering level is unequal between different groups of service users based on their economic, physical, educational, and family background. Daly and Lewis (2000) argue that marketisation in social care results in a more systematic and targeted group of service recipients, which would narrow the scope of people who could achieve services (e.g. older people who are at lower level of dependency might be excluded for …show more content…
The financial burden and informal care needs are heavy on the family, especially to those who cannot afford services in the market even with existing public support. Nyssens et al. (2012) illustrate that public resource has not caught up with the pace of home care needs inside of the co-payment, which gave rise to private home care provision instead of state regulated provision. Daly and Lewis (2000) argued that marketisation might give greater individual choice for older people and their family, while push ‘compulsory altruism’ (Land and Rose 1985) on family carers. Lewis and West (2014) suggests that the marketisation enhances the burden of the family by promoting increasing informal care. In this case, it is the informal care workers who must pick up the slack. However, the encouragement to informal care is restricted. Powell (2007) points out the ‘do-it-yourself’ policy, where individuals and families would construct their welfare model combining the state and market sectors. For instance, Arksey and Glendinning (2007) argue that local governments in the UK have given additional responsibilities to informal carers without additional supports. Besides, the support level among different local governments is diverse. Arksey and Glendinning (2007) argues that some authorities in Britain managed to improve support to informal carers but these supports are not consistent over

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