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Carers UK welcomes cross-party report on new care laws

19 March 2013

Carers UK has warmly welcomed a cross-party report from the Joint Committee on the draft Care and Support Bill, scrutinising the Government’s plans for social care legislation.

The draft Bill, which would mark the biggest change to social care law in over 60 years, sets out how care and support services will be paid for and delivered for generations to come. Today’s (19th March 2013) scrutiny report, from a cross-party group of MPs and Peers, has recommended important areas for improvement.

Carers UK is pleased that a number of the recommendations put forward in the charity’s evidence to the committee have been included in the report. Critically, the Joint Committee report from all parties is unequivocal about the urgent need for better funding for social care services locally.

Emily Holzhausen, Carers UK Director of Policy and Public Affairs, who gave evidence to the Committee, said: “The draft Bill is the biggest change to social care law since 1948 and brings significant changes that will have a major impact on the lives of England’s 5.5 million carers. The cross-party committee is very clear that greater resource is a vital part of making the new legislation work.

“The Joint Committee has made a number of strong recommendations which, if implemented, would ensure carers’ support would not be taken for granted and they would also be protected from being wrongly charged for disabled people’s services.

“Serious omissions in the Government’s proposed legislation are also identified in the report which would mean that young carers and around 440,000 carers caring for disabled children would have weaker rights than other carers. Government must act to ensure parent and young carers are not left behind and all carers have equal rights.

“Carers UK welcomes the Committee’s call on Government to strengthen plans to stimulate a market in care services. If implemented, the recommendations could bring about a fundamental shift in the quality and availability of care and support services.

“Recommendations that the care services market should be stimulated in the same way as childcare services reflect families’ urgent need for flexible and affordable services, and recognises the essential role that care and support services can have in enabling carers to work alongside family responsibilities.”

The impact of the current lack of services on families and the economy is highlighted in a recent Carers UK/YouGov poll which found that 2.3 million have given up work to care and 3 million have working hours to cope with caring (1). Earlier analysis indicated the cost of families being forced to give up work to care was £5.3 billion to the Exchequer (2).

18th March 2013

 

To get involved in Carers UK's campaign for Equal Rights for Carers - ensuring parent carers and young carers are not left behind - visit www.carersuk.org/get-involved/equal-rights-for-carers

 

Contact:

Steve McIntosh 0207 378 4937 / This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Chloe Wright 0207 378 4942 / This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Out of hours mobile: 07875724088

 


Notes:

1) A representative Carers UK/ YouGov poll was carried out in February 2013, and showed:

When asked “has caring for an elderly parent or, a seriously ill or disabled loved one (i.e. helping with washing, dressing, eating,  hospital visits, running errands etc.) ever had any impact on your work?” those with caring roles answered:

A total of 22% stated their work had been affected - 4% gave up work to care for an elderly parent (equivalent to 2.32 million people), or an ill or disabled loved one; 6% reduced their working hours to care for an elderly parent (representing 2.85 million people), or an ill or disabled loved one; 10% said their work   had been negatively affected by caring for an elderly parent, or an ill or disabled loved one (e.g. stress or tiredness); 4% said other impact. 16% said they had cared for an elderly parent, or an ill or disabled loved one, but their work was not affected.

Full details at www.carersuk.org/newsroom/item/3033-research-reveals-over-2-million-quit-work-to-care

2) Age UK analysis, based on London School of Economics research, indicated that the cost to the Exchequer in lost tax revenues, lost earnings and additional benefit payments as a result of carers being forced to give up work to care was £5.3 billion. Full details at www.ageuk.org.uk/latest-press/archive/care-in-crisis-more-than-53-billion-wiped-from-the-economy

3) Carers UK is a charity set up to support the millions of people who care for an elderly relative, a sick partner or a disabled family member. Carers UK: 

  • supports carers and provides information and advice about caring
  • influences policy through our research based
  • campaigns to make life better for carers.

 

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