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21 HOUR RULE ? CA : Eligibility / Studying / Developments : The Sole Thread ANYWHERE Dealing With This Abomination ! - Page 7 - Carers UK Forum

21 HOUR RULE ? CA : Eligibility / Studying / Developments : The Sole Thread ANYWHERE Dealing With This Abomination !

Share your petitions or campaigns here.
76 posts
Usual outcome ... trawling for some information , came across something else.

Lincolnshire Students Union ... meeting last month ... student carers on the menu.

Email sent , copy of which as follows :

Hi ... whilst trawling for news , came across a " Blog " mentioning
a meeting back in April ... with student carers on the menu.

I am a former , lone , carer active within the Carers UK forum ...
the only place left in town for the 6.5 million family carers to
engage online.

Needless to add , very little use is made of the forum but ... a few
of us are still trying our best to engage the carer army.

One thread will be of particular interest to any student carers :

The 21 Hour Rule Debacle.

Direct link as follows :

https://www.carersuk.org/forum/news-and ... ents-29098

The words ... BANGING / HEAD / BRICK and WALL ... spring to mind.

Carers Strategy ... due as part of the green paper on social care later this year.

Have a perusal and then let me know if there is anything of interest to you.

In short , how many potential students have had to refuse further education because of the 21 Hour Rule ?

Not just this year but for the past 40 ?


If nothing else , EVERY avenue needs to be explored ???
Two weeks now passed and ... zilch !

Add the latest bunch to the list of those who merely sit on the sidelines.

Nothing anywhere else except for one ray of sunshine.

This thread is top of most search engines when searching for 21 HOUR RULE CARERS.

So what ? ... you may ask ?

Diarise forward ... more by routine than any other excuse ?
Must be old age finally creeping up on me ... one I MISSED ... BBC Wales 4 June 2018 :

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/uk-wales- ... fits-rules

Carer 'forced to quit college' over benefits rules.


A student who has looked after her mother since she was 11 said she feels totally disheartened after quitting college because would lose her weekly carer's allowance.

Lucy Prentice was two years into a business administration and animal management course at Coleg Sir Gar in Carmarthen.

But her third year would have seen her go over the maximum 21 hours a week studying and still qualify for the benefit.

Ms Prentice, 20, said the payment was vital for paying for things like heating as well as the family car.

The Department for Work and Pensions insisted it recognised "the importance of carers maintaining links with the education system" and achieving their full potential.

A spokesman said: "Carers can undertake up to 21 hours of supervised study per week and still receive carer's allowance. Carers in full-time education may also be eligible for other financial support through the educational maintenance system."

As posted earlier , IF no grants / allowances through the Education Maintenance System ( EMS ) are available ????

What then ?

Still lose Carers Allowance ???

Thousands , if not hundreds of , carers can access further education for a variety of subjects which are NOT covered by the EMS.

So , all are " Disbarred " through the loss of Carers Allowance as a direct result from this discriminatory rule ???

There again , if one has the means , losing Carers Allowance may NOT be a great loss ?

In CarerLand , that word CHOICE again ... if one has the means , they WILL have " The Choice. "

Reflects through many Carers UK strategies over the past decade ... those without that " Choice " see no benefit.
Just one of the failed attempts to get this Issue greater publicity ... Carers Trust backed in Wales ... earlier this year ... and this is the result :

Closed petition

Allow carers to study more than 21 hours a week and claim Carers Allowance

Carers cannot be in full time education and claim Carers Allowance even if they are caring for the 35-hours a week to make them eligible for this benefit.

This particularly discriminates against young adult carers reaching their full potential in life.

This petition is closed All petitions run for 6 months

1,844 signatures

Pathetic !

Nothing on family carers seeking to improve their future carer prospects once their caring days are ended.

A tombstone of the so called supporting organisations appears earlier in this thread ... repeated here :
NUS ... Contacted by me ( Student angle , carer angle secondary ... not exclusive ! )
Local mp ... Contacted by me
Other mps ... Awaiting on local mp to confirm contact
All Party Carers Group ... Awaiting on news as to being involved
Government ( Education Minister ) ... Unknown but would be involved at some stage
Carers Day in the House ... First goal , awaiting news from local mp
NUS ( Wales ) ... Contact with Welsh Government / Education Minister
Carers UK ( Wales ) ... Involved somewhere with Wales
Welsh Government ... Contacted by NUS ( Wales )
NUS ( Scotland ) ... Campaign with Scottish Government ( 21 Hour Rule unlikely )
Scottish Government ... Contacted by NUS ( Scotland )
Carers Trust ... Putting their nose in Scotland ( NO mention of the 21 Hour Rule ... as can be expected ! )
.... and now Carers Trust ( Wales )
Learning and Work Institute ?

If they were genuine in their efforts , might the way forward be a JOINT effort ... and supported by a well argued legal thesis ?

Be seen to be doing something whilst doing nothing appears to be the norm over the past 20 years.

Work together ?

" Look at us , we're getting more publicity than you ! "

PIGS and FLY spring to mind.

I really do despair at times.
An extract from that Parliamentary report I make reference to on several occasions ... a decade ago :
Carer's Allowance: incentives to work, study and volunteer


158. Carer's Allowance is withdrawn if a carer embarks on an educational course that entails more than 21 hours study per week. This rule has been much criticised by a number of organisations, as it creates a barrier to carers wishing to engage in education and training in order to update their skills with a view to entering or re-entering the labour market. A number of submissions called for those on Carer's Allowance to be exempt from this rule.[149]

159. Many carers report that their caring responsibilities necessitate training for a new form of employment. However, many vocational and academic courses only attract funding if the participant studies full time and within a particular timescale. This may be impossible for a carer.[150]

160. At present 16 and 17 year old carers can receive Carer's Allowance, but only if they are not in education for 21 hours or more a week, forcing them to choose between caring and being educated. Ms Redmond of Carers UK said: "The 21-hours study rule really should go. It does not make any sense at all. Why we should penalise people for studying I have no idea at all."[151]

161. Carerwatch added that many financially-assisted educational courses do not have Carer's Allowance on their list of qualifying benefits for reduced fees, making engaging in education unaffordable. A student in receipt of Income Support, which is paid at a higher rate than Carer's Allowance, will pay less than someone in receipt of Carer's Allowance.[152]

162. The Minister for Disabled People, Anne McGuire, acknowledged that "We need to look at how we dismantle some of the barriers. If we want to encourage people into training and education, to build up skills, to move into the employment market, then we need to look at how some of the elements of our rules perhaps disadvantage people in that respect."

163. Carers currently face a stark choice between engaging in education and training without any financial support or living on benefits. Many carers would be able to undertake education or training in addition to providing in excess of 35 hours of care per week. We recommend that the Department evaluates the effect of lifting the 21 hour study rule for carers on Carer's Allowance to enable carers to engage in education and training as a route into paid employment. We also recommend that the Department evaluates the effect of adding Carer's Allowance to the list of qualifying benefits for reduced education and training fees.

10 years on and ... not even a whisper since ... except for this thread ?

Anyone else ... individual or organisation ... can say that they have the interests of family / kinship carers at heart ?

If it doesn't apply to them directly , not interested ?

I'm sure that the millions directly affected over the years will have something different to say ?
Hardly anything posted on the Internet as of late ... apart from yet another petition ... once again , in isolation without sounding out likely heavyweights ... such as the NUS :

We’re in an exciting time of youth political engagement and social movement leadership. Within those movements, there is a petition that has been started by 19 year old young adult carer Lucy Prentice of Pencadar, Wales.

Lucy has been a carer for her disabled mother since age 11 and attends college part-time.

She, like many other young adult carers, would like to attend college full-time, but the current law in place for the Carer’s Allowance does not allow study on a course for more than 21 hours a week, even if they meet the 35 hour a week caring requirement to claim the Carer’s Allowance. Young adult carers like Lucy are forced to decide whether to claim the Carer’s Allowance of £62.70 a week, or to be in full-time education.

The current law overlooks that it can be advantageous for young adult carers to maintain full-time education whilst providing unpaid care for their families. Continuing in education is also import for their future careers. As Lucy says, the Carer’s Allowance rule prohibits young people like her from “reaching their full potential”. Her petition calls on the government to exempt young carers from the 21 hour rule of the Carer’s Allowance. Please consider signing the petition.

Yet another grass roots type campaign ... would help if the organizers had done a little homework ... no mention of us ???

We’re in an exciting time of youth political engagement and social movement leadership.

Had to laugh ... as a child of the late sixties ... the present generation ... an insult to the very notion ????
My letter requesting a Mandatory Reconsideration? Any thoughts?

To Whom It May Concern,

RE: Claim for Carers Allowance; Disallowed.

I am writing to ask for a Mandatory Reconsideration, following a decision made to disallow my claim for Carers Allowance. This decision is wrong. You state that my course of study is Full time, yet I supplied evidence that proves categorically that my hours are well under the threshold of 21 hours per week.

Most colleges state that courses of 12 hours per week are Full Time. Mine is 13 per week, with zero independent learning and no placement. My course is classed as Full time, as students Under 19 years of age are expected to attend Maths/English and Functional Skills, probably so their parents can continue to receive benefits. As an adult none of these things apply to me. I do not receive college funding or a bursary of any kind.

I am angry at the injustice of this, and believe it is discrimination. In my last employment I worked 15 hours a week, at this time my claim for carers would have been allowed. I study for two hours less per week currently and I’m no longer entitled because of a generic description, on which I have zero control? People studying for twenty hours and fifty-nine minutes on a course described as part-time are entitled and therefore have less hours to care than I do. How is this a right and fair criteria?

You cannot penalise me for the way in which a college describes a course! (Probably surrounding issues with their pot of funds)
I study 13 hours per week. I have no independent learning, homework or placement. I study 13 hours per week, I consider this to be PART TIME!
Strongly recommend adding a little weight ... certified letter from the college in support thereof.

Individuals are virtually powerless against the System despite , appearing , to hold a winning hand.

NUS backing as further confirmation ?
Four months on and ... nothing ... not even a glimmer on an Internet search ... as if this thread needs to be
placed in hibernation ... for what ?

Anyone out there with some fresh thoughts ...short of repeating a blitz on all supporting organisations mentioned earlier ?
Forthcoming forum session on Benefits and Community Law.

I have taken the opportunity of bouncing the DISCRIMINATION BY ASSOCIATION element off CUK's representative.

https://www.carersuk.org/forum/social-a ... fits-37219

Diarise forward to record what transpires.
76 posts