Alistair Burt, the Minister for Care and Support, has announced he will resign from his position in September once the new Conservative leader and Prime Minister has been chosen.
Source: Flickr/Foreign and Commonwealth Office
The Bury-born MP for North East Bedfordshire made the announcement on Tuesday during oral questions at the House of Commons, stating that he would be stepping away from frontbench politics 24 years after his first junior minister role.
Having succeeded Liberal Democrats Paul Burstow and Norman Lamb in May 2015, Burt is the first Conservative told hold the post since 1997, but will now relinquish it in a decision he said was not linked to Brexit or junior doctors refusing new contract arrangements.
“Twenty-four years and one month ago, I answered my first question as a junior minister in oral questions and I’ve just completed my last oral questions,” Mr Burt said.
“This is not a sudden post-Brexit resignation, it’s not catching; a few weeks ago I made clear to the Secretary of State and to the Prime Minister and the Chief Whip that I wouldn’t after the referendum be seeking a post in what I expected to be a reshuffled government.
"And in the event, I hope to carry on with my duties until September but there won’t be another oral questions."
A key point in Burt's tenure in the post was to shelve Care Act 2014 funding reforms, delaying April 2016 plans to put a cap on the amount self-funders can contribute to their personal care costs - it will now come into force in 2020.
He also presided over consultations on a new national carers strategy and spearheaded the government's response to the Law Commission's deprivation of liberty reforms, where his harsh criticisms saw the reforms scaled back radically.
However, Burt was also in-post during the Government's controversial spending review, although he suggested he had little involvement to sector leaders, saying he would find out what the Chancellor had planned for social care at the same time as them.
A successor has yet to be chosen, with a spokesman at the Department of Health stating the department would be running 'business as usual' until September's leadership contest.
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