"We have suffered financial hardship so bad it's unreal. Before I became a carer I worked for many years. I believed that I paid all my dues. Today a carer is made to look like a scrounger, I feel every time you speak to one of the agencies that are supposed to help us, they somehow try to make you feel ashamed of yourself." Carers UK member
Carers UK is launching a Caring and Family Finances Inquiry to provide a definitive examination of the financial impact of caring and assess the impact of the Government's changes to the benefits system. Running throughout 2013, the Inquiry will have carers’ voices at its heart, collecting evidence via public polling, survey data and through evidence sessions involving carers across the UK.
Tell us about your experiences of caring by completing our State of Caring survey
“We will all care or need care at some point in our lives. The financial cost can push family finances to breaking point as they face the extra costs of ill-health and cut working hours or give up work to care. The financial support for carers currently isn’t enough to stop families falling into debt and financial hardship. Now, on top of this, families who are already struggling face a blizzard of cuts and changes to the benefits system. Our Inquiry will deliver a comprehensive picture of the impact of this growing pressure on family finances and deliver a verdict and recommendations on the impact of the Government’s benefit changes on carers.”
Helena Herklots, Chief Executive, Carers UK
What carers say about the financial impact
“Me and my husband had always worked. But when he fell ill, working was impossible for us both. We had good jobs and were doing well, but it all fell apart. We lost two wages, fell into debt and lost our house. Now it is horrible - you’re looked on like a scrounger. Things were already hard, but now our benefits are going to be cut back even further."
Julie, who cares for her husband who suffered a brain injury
“We just set out in life to be like anyone else – to work, to own our home and just live our lives. But that has all gone by the wayside. It is extremely difficult. I had to give up my job, we’ve had to cut back on everything and had rely on other people for help. That isn’t what we ever wanted.”
John, who cares for his wife Diane who has MS