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looking for a bit of advice - Carers UK Forum

looking for a bit of advice

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
The Social Worker is coming out to see us as apparently everyone in our area is to be switched to self directed support under a personalised budget. I get the impression that he only regards my husband as our son's carer and not me despite the fact that I am the one who gets the carers allowance for our son. We don't know what to expect from this meeting. Since I have now been diagnosed with 4 fractured vertebrae and osteoporosis I cannot help my husband with the care like I used to and he has been doing everything for the last 18 months on his own.
Should we be getting two disabled people's assessments and a carers assessment? Or should it be 2 carers assessments and 1 disabled person (my son)? SW says that carers don't get a budget on their own and what carers do for a disabled person is taken off what the disabled person gets in their budget so basically they will be using us as unpaid workers even though he says no one is forcing us to care. So what we do is taken into account when calculating the personal care budget but we get nothing from it is that right?

Eun
Hello Eun - sorry but, personally speaking, I can't help here !

But - I think I know a 'man who can' :) I suggest you contact the Carers UK Advice Line team I'm sure they should be able to be able to give you advice on the best route to take and what to expect from the meeting.

As the telephone line is generally oversubscribed I'd recommend emailing them in the first instance (with a telephone contact) - their contact details are here

http://www.carersuk.org/help-and-advice/talk-to-us
Hi Eun

I'm not sure of the law as it stands in Scotland so Susie's suggestion is probably best. But, as a matter of existing principles that I believe are UK-wide, I'd suggest the following:

Personal budgets are calculated on what is not already being done by carers. So your point about what you do being taken into account but getting nothing for it is essentially correct. Carers have always been seen as a resource to be used and Jeremy Hunt has recently reinforced that by stating that not enough families provide care in the UK compared with other countries. He's another on my list of people I don't want to meet with witnesses ;)

The Carers Assessment should reflect what carers cannot do, or are struggling to do - or plain unwilling. That should add back at least some cash. For example, if there's a task that your husband finds difficult but he does it anyway, he must point out that it's causing him problems (health, for example), or that he is no longer willing/able to do it. That way it becomes a task that needs to be funded.

I'd be willing to bet you are still a carer for your son to at least some extent, if not as much as before since the osteoporosis/fractures. You'll be doing something. That should be acknowledged, as should the fact of your own health needs. If your husband is also caring for you at all, his Carers Assessment needs to show that too - and where it is adding to his own difficulties.

In other words, I think there needs to be two Carers Assessments, and probably two assessments for disabled people. Either way, I strongly suggest you have someone at the meeting with you - doesn't have to be an advocate although that would be good, a friend would be fine. Someone to act as a witness, perhaps take notes. Just in case you're not happy with what happens and can give independent evidence if you need it.
My son's DP assessment is based on the fact that he needs someone with him almost all the time. It's been acknowledged that I have health problems, and therefore even when M is home, my eldest son can be paid for looking after him, but for various reasons, he doesn't want to be paid for this anymore. As a result, there is more money we can spend during the week on a better care package for M when he's in his flat. In your situation Eun, if Rob needs care 24/7, then I would argue that his care package should reflect that. As you should not be caring, is your husband really fit for caring either? I seem to remember he had some problems too? If so, young Rob should have a handsome package of 24/7 care. I agree with Charles, have an independent witness at the meeting, I ended up needing one because SSD agreed one thing, then minuted something completely different!!! Hope it goes well for you.
If not an independent witness, film everything on your phone. Rob will know how!! :)

All the VERY best to you, as always.....Kindest, Jenny.