Glasgow City Council: end the freeze! Give foster carers the financial security they need

Chief Officer Susanne Miller, Cllr Maggie McTernan, Cllr Martha Wardrop, Bailie Ade Aibinu, Bailie Annette Christie, Cllr Mhairi Hunter, Cllr Jennifer Layden, Bailie Anne McTaggart, Cllr Jane Morgan.

Foster care workers look after some of the most vulnerable children in our communities, providing them with safe homes and a supportive environment, but right now the system is failing. Foster carers are unable to continue with the financial burden. In Glasgow, the situation has become untenable.

As deliberations over its February 2022 budget, foster carers with the Independent Workers of Great Britain (IWGB) are calling on Glasgow City Council to redress the 10 year pay freeze to the child’s allowance. After inflation, the freeze equates to a 23.12 percent cut in the foster child allowance, leaving foster carers forced to subsidise costs of care themselves. In many cases this is not possible as pay has been frozen for 13 years, resulting in a 30 percent real pay cut.

This comes at a time when foster carers have worked throughout the pandemic to ensure stability for the young people in their care. They have placed themselves at additional risk by continuing to facilitate contact between children and their families.

Investment would improve quality of care and insure looked after children have the best possible start while saving public money, lessening pressure on other public services and boosting Glasgow’s local economy. Sufficient investment across Scotland could reduce public costs by £875 million per year.

A 2017 national survey revealed 52 percent of foster care workers earn less than £4 per hour after the child’s allowance for costs, with almost a quarter earning less than £1.70 per hour.

This needs to change now.

Foster care workers, organising as members of the Independent Workers’ Union of Great Britain, are making the following demands to Glasgow City Council to improve their working conditions as part of their #Fairness4FosterCare campaign:

  • Uplift of the fostering allowances by 23.12 % to bring it in line with inflation since 2012/13, and provide an annual increase to the fostering allowance in line with inflation going forward;

  • The implementation of the Mockingbird programme. The Mockingbird programme prioritises the needs of young people in care through creating a network of consistent and trusted carers who can provide respite and support for foster care workers.

  • Access to 5 paid (carer's fees only) compassionate leave days;

  • Over-payments only be recouped via foster carer’s fees and not child’s allowance;

  • Trade union recognition so foster carers can collectively advocate for their own pay and conditions in the future.


To: Chief Officer Susanne Miller, Cllr Maggie McTernan, Cllr Martha Wardrop, Bailie Ade Aibinu, Bailie Annette Christie, Cllr Mhairi Hunter, Cllr Jennifer Layden, Bailie Anne McTaggart, Cllr Jane Morgan.
From: [Your Name]

Foster care workers, organising as members of the Independent Workers’ Union of Great Britain, are making the following demands to Glasgow City Council to improve their working conditions as part of their #Fairness4FosterCare campaign:

• Uplift of the fostering allowances by 23.12 % to bring it in line with inflation since 2012/13, and provide an annual increase to the fostering allowance in line with inflation going forward;

• The implementation of the Mockingbird programme. The Mockingbird programme prioritises the needs of young people in care through creating a network of consistent and trusted carers who can provide respite and support for foster care workers.

• Access to 5 paid (carer's fees only) compassionate leave days;

• Over-payments only be recouped via foster carer’s fees and not child’s allowance;

• Trade union recognition so foster carers can collectively advocate for their own pay and conditions in the future.

​Glasgow City Council: do the right thing! The foster care workers of Glasgow are at the heart of the social care system and provide a vital service to the Glasgow Community. They deserve dignity and financial security.​