However, the survey revealed a huge lack of confidence in the care system, with just 3% of people saying they were very confident that they or a close family member would get a sufficient level of care provided to have a good quality of life.

While 24% say they were fairly confident and 13% said they did not know.  

Mencap spokeswoman Lorainne Bellamy, who has a learning disability, said:

I am delighted to hear that the public want to see more money spent on social care. For myself, and many other vulnerable people, social care means we are able to go out and be part of our communities. Without help with things such as managing money, washing or medication many vulnerable people would be stuck indoors and isolated. I am lucky enough to have a full-time job, but this is possible because I receive the support I need. Without the support of social care I fear of going back into my shell and being isolated.

I am glad the government can now see how the general public thinks social care is one of the most important issues for the entire country. I hope they listen to this message and do not ignore the country’s wishes for more funding in the care system.

The Care and Support Alliance’s survey also revealed:

  • 6 in 10 people are not confident they will receive sufficient care; that goes up to seven in 10 for over 60s
  • two thirds of those aged 60 and over in England believe government should be doing more in this area and less in others. 
  • along with health services, support for elderly and disabled people is the biggest priority for where the electorate would want to see the Government increase expenditure
  • one in three in England rely on, or have a close family member that relies on, the care system.


For further information or to arrange interviews, please contact the Mencap press office on 020 7696 5414 or

Notes to editors

The polling

All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc.  Total sample size was 4,685 English adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 6th - 9th July 2014. 

The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all English adults (aged 18+). 

About Mencap

There are 1.4 million people with a learning disability in the UK. Mencap works to support people with a learning disability, their families and carers by fighting to change laws, improve services and access to education, employment and leisure facilities.

Mencap supports thousands of people with a learning disability to live their lives the way they want. 

For advice and information about learning disability and Mencap services in your area, contact Mencap Direct on 0808 808 1111 (9am-5pm, Monday-Friday) or email

What is a learning disability?

A learning disability is a reduced intellectual ability which can cause problems with everyday tasks – for example shopping and cooking, or travelling to new places – which affects someone for their whole life.

People with a learning disability can take longer to learn new things and may need support to develop new skills, understand difficult information and engage with other people. The level of support someone needs is different with every individual. For example, someone with a severe learning disability might need much more support with daily tasks than someone with a mild learning disability.

Learning disability is not a mental illness or a learning difficulty. Very often the term ‘learning difficulty’ is wrongly used interchangeably with ‘learning disability’.