21 HOUR RULE : CA : Eligibility / Studying

Share your petitions or campaigns here.
Now with the NUS's National Executive Councillor ( Mature Students ) and Vice President ( Welfare ).

Hopefully , not Laurel and Hardy ... Oliver's immortal line ... Well, here's another nice mess you've gotten me into ... I wonder , could history repeat itself ?

Especially if this Issue was raised some years ago , and still in the " To do ... at some undetermined time in the future " ( Meaning when he / she has retired ) pile ????

And no , I'm not stepping into that trap ... ???

Anyway , at least Mr. X has kept me upto date , a refreshing change from some outfits over the years.

Mentions of motions / proceedures ... where have we met with that before ? ... terse response suggesting that they look at the evidence , and consider whether dragging their heels will go down well with the potential 100,000 students / carers who might benefit.

To add fuel to the smouldering flames , Housing Benefit cuts for the 18-21 year olds are due ... how many student carers may be affected ?

Interesting times ? Nope , just concerned that this Issue may get buried ... at both ends ?

After all , who really cares for carers , and is prepared to take on our problems ???????????
In response to a couple of enquiries , my observations on the 21 hour rule , in plain English , for the benefit of Mr. X , initial contact at the NUS :

Thanks Mr. X.

Card carrying NUS students who also care.

If they are studying for more than 21 hours per week , Carers
Allowance cannot be claimed. Therefore , and for many years ,
postings have been made on Carer forums from carers who
had to either forego or give up further education because of
this barrier.

Many students planning to enroll today may not even consider
enrolling because of this very same barrier.

Barrier or discrimination ?

Now , you , me and anyone else can carve up a 168 hour week
into segements ... studying / caring / sleep ... to claim Carers
Allowance , one must care for a minimum of 35 hours.

Do the maths ... an artificial barrier or what ?

21 + 35 = 56 .... 112 left .... 49 hours sleeping .... 63 hours left.

Another hour studying ? Oops , there goes one's Carers Allowance !

Given that the Government want everyone to work , why this
barrier when a carer knowing that the caring days are to end
on the death of the caree , like me , needs to brush up on
present education skills to boost his chances of employment
are stopped because Carers Allowance would cease the moment
he breached the 21 hour rule.

Time for this artificial barrier to be shown for what it is , and to
withdrawn from the Statute book. A joint venture to do so.

You have many student carers carrying NUS cards. A duty to
at least look into the problem if not affirmative action ?
Hopefully , Mr. X didn't need a calculator to do the same permutations ?

If any reader sees any flaws in this observation , please post now before I develope this further on behalf of all carers who are caught by this artificial looking barrier.
Interesting reading as I have just received my letter today from DWP detailing how I can go about making an appeal.

My carers allowance has been refused as I am trying to re-educate myself at the age of 40 and get back into employment with some prospects above supermarket janitor. I am actually retaking my first year as a year without residency, so no supervised study at all, yet as I fall under the "full time education" banner, it is all refused.

I have decided to appeal the mandatory reconsideration and take it to a tribunal. Am I wasting my time? I hope not. I really hope that someone will finally realise that carers are not restricted to 35 hours a week and if regular students can receive so much student finance support to be allowed to attend 6 lectures a week and drink themselves stupid the rest of the time, why can't I receive a little £62 a week for combining my studies with demanding caring duties?
Hi Robin .... the scenario you outlined is precisely why I am continuing my endeavours to bring this artificial barrier out into the open.

Having done that , it will be down to the NUS and / or Carers UK to take over and use their expertise on behalf of all carers and students so affected.

Strongly recommend ( 1 ) local NUS Welfare Officer for immediate help and guidance and ( 2 ) Advice Line through the HELP section towards the top. Refer to my take on this as to the artificial nature. If any case law , please let me know , no trace so far.

The real question to ask is why has no one done so before. A question that should be asked of both organisations already mentioned.

Still , we are here now , with me , without a mandate / permission to do anything on anyone else's behalf , carrying the torch. Feel free to takeover at anytime , or even some ammunition to support YOUR case.

All further news will be posted on this thread as and when received.
Thank you, Chris, I think this is a very important issue and, like you, I am stunned no one has challenged this openly up to this point.

The Decision Maker from the carers unit informed me that others were making similar appeals to me, which leads me to believe that others have tried and failed in the past. But I refuse to let this slide - it isn't really about the money, though that would help, it is more about the number of challenges carers face and the barriers imposed on them to further remove them from society.

Carers are the unsung heroes of modern society and are treated appallingly. My hope, in challenging this decision, is at the very least to raise some awareness of the issue. I have already contacted my local paper and my local MP, along with CAB and the Advise line, to muster any support I can.

Any further information I receive I will post here.
Thanks Robin.

My own thought would be a Private Members Bill , with a mp from each party behind it. Carers Day in the House is due shortly , what an opportunity NOT to miss !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Even as apart of the forthcoming Carers Strategy ?

With so many contacts , the NUS / Carers UK should be able to approach a few mps , given their lobbying over the decades. Even , perhaps , the existing All Party Carer Group in the House as a first point of call.

Would be a little odd if a two way communication does not already exist ?

After all , nothing else would be expected of supporting organisations , students / carers this time.

Seems straightforward enough , the only problem would appear to be the Will , unless , after , 14 years or so , I am missinng something.

Supporting organisation support ... or is that merely an empty gesture whenever it suits them , not us ?

If so , perhaps that would clarify that a little for all students and carers alike so we all know where we stand.

The solving of this Issue will ease the plight of many carers.

There is no greater priority than the Plight.
Just upped the temperature a little.

Email just sent to John Mann , my local mp :

John.

As an inmate of the Worksop Gulag who also voted
for you at the last one , I , and 6 million carers need
help.

No thanks to the Hansard System , nationwide issues
need to be raised with one's local mp , first.

In your case , bad news , that means me.

I need your services as a postman , nothing more.

Carers Strategy with Government , plans expected in June.

Carers Day in the House , also scheduled for June.

Two issues that need to be on table. If not the first ,
ESSENTIAL for the second.

From the grass roots and detailed on the Carers Uk forum.

1. Carer Travel Concessions
2. 21 Hour Study Rule as eligibility for receiving Carers Allowance

In pure financial terms £ 500 MILLION acrosss these two alone.

Absurd ?

Travel - blind caree travels on public transport with a guide dog.
Another blind caree travels on the same bus / train with a human carer.
Guide dog goes free , human carer pays full fare.

21 Hour Rule - 35 hours minimum caring to claim Carers Allowance.
Only 21 hours for studying allowed. Go half and hour over , and Carers
Allowance ceases.
How many hours in a week ? 168
Caring 35 / Studying 21 / Sleeping 49 ... 63 hours left ... ?

Need for these Issues to be put before your colleagues :

Barbara Keeley ( Usually Mistress of Ceremonies on Carers Day in the House )
Alex Cunningham
Jack Dromey
Angela Rayner

Last three are members of the All Party Carers Group.

Obviously , a lot more behind these Issues but , not the purpose of this email.

In today's Sad New World , how does an ordinary person get an important
Issue to the attention of those on the top floor without having to go
through " Customs checks " on every floor inbetween.

6 million carers ... and we all need someone somewhere to take a direct
interest in us , and not rely on any third party to do so.

With Respect.


Applaud / shriek in horror / make a cup of tea ?

It's done ... fingers crossed for a positive reply.
Another golden opportunity missed !

https://carers.org/news-item/student-ca ... s-scotland

Everything except the 21 hour rule ... unless it's different in Scotland ?

Still , those attending will have taken some comfort away with them ... a special recognition award has been announced.

I bet that went down well ???????

I wonder just what our former CT readers make of that in the context of the problem , identified by carers , which is the subject of this thread.

Par for the course and even an improvement ?

What world do they see from their ivory towers ?
Feels like it contradicts the whole "right to work, study and live your own life" we allegedly have.
Copy of my latest email to Mr. X , on point at the NUS :

Hi Mr. X ...

I have raised the temperature a little by contact my local
mp , John Mann , Bassetlaw ( Including the Worksop Gulag )
a copy of which follows my email signature.

Note the two Issues and the forthcoming dates which are
important if I ignore any input from the NUS.

4 mps are mentioned from the carers angle ( All Labour as
is John ) . other mps in the All Party Group are :

Rt Hon. Alistair Burt
Alex Cunningham
Mims Davies
Jack Dromey
Caroline Lucas
Dr Dan Poulter
Angela Rayner
Dr Eilidh Whiteford

From your end , the 21 Hour Rule dovetails into your " Problem "
with all students , who may be card carrying members , and also
be caring , or students unable to study because of the same Rule.

Please pass on this information to whosover within the NUS.

If they have any suggestions / recommendations . please let me
know.

So far , treat this as a grass roots carers effort ... our supporting
organisations remain silence ... so far. Unknown whether they will
add their input through their channels but , at this stage , I will
assume that carers will be flying solo.

If nothing else , the two Issues ... £ 500 million or so at stake
... a good slice of that would benefit thousands of students carers.

If the Government want to encourage all people to work , and be
better educated , WHY THE 21 HOUR RULE BARRIER ?


Little more than bringing him / NUS upto date with the position as I see it.

Any other suggestions / recommendations ?

PLEASE POST !

########################################################################

The thought of mere carers causing a ( possible ) rewrite of the script for Carers Day gives me every incentitive to hammer this one , and the Travel Concessions Issue , home ... with a proper hammer and 6 inch nails ?

" No one cares for us ,
No one cares for us
We are carers , simple carers
Simple carers
From the pit "

Our flag flying from their mast as well ... blue and white in case we upset the " Owners " of that verse ???

Trust me on that one !!!