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One Leader or Team Work? - Carers UK Forum

One Leader or Team Work?

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
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It is very frustrating to read press releases that seem to understate and just skim the surface of how carers will be affected and how they are feeling.

I read an article the other day about charities always walking a fine line between trying to speak up for their members and retain their charity status. So no matter how strongly Imelda Redmond and CUK staff may feel on a personal level; they still have to maintain a constant balancing act of trying to influence ministers and the government whilst having to keep within certain boundaries.

If carers want more freedom of speech, if they want stronger worded press releases etc then they really need to find a way of doing that themselves. In saying that I don't mean that carers should abandon the charities, in many ways the charities do a very good job of supporting carers in providing information, carer centres, help lines and in having the facilities and capabilities to conduct surveys etc and interact with the government. It took a long time and a lot of hard work for the Carer Charities to become established and get all these facilities in place and to build up a relationship with the government and its ministers to the point where they are consulted and attend meetings etc.

I don't believe that one person or one organisation can be all things to all people. Realistically it isn't possible for the charities to fulfil every need and every expectation of, and on behalf of carers.

That is the reason a group of carers set up the Carerwatch website and forum as a campaigning resource for carers to use to start and run campaigns of their own.
We set it up in the hope that with carers support that the Carerwatch forum and website would enable carers to form their own media contacts etc.
CW isn't there to compete with or criticize the efforts of the carer charities or another carer run forums. Carerwatch is there as just another facility, or tool if you like for carers to use in their campaign to improve their own and their carees lives.

If carers are waiting for one person or organisation to lead them, or fix it for them, they could have a long wait. If carers want to work as a team and pool their resources, knowledge, talents etc then they can begin putting a plan together today.

Come and support the Carerwatch team join in the discussion on Carer Watch Campaigns and lets pool our resources and work to our strengths and get a direct action campaign that will get us listened to soner rather than later.
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HI CHERIL its me GEORGIE BOY


CARERS UK = they have said " they are the voice of carers fighting to end injustice & will not stop untill people recognise the value of carers and that carers get the financial support they need "

sounds like fighting talk to me.

So what part of that statement stops them from doing just that if they are the voice of carers then speak up for us they know how we feel it does not matter if they are a charity or not they must represent their membership and if they dont we should have the ability to remove them.

who appoints the leadership of carers uk ???

the only good thing from carers uk is this forum Image
HI CHERIL its me GEORGIE BOY


CARERS UK = they have said " they are the voice of carers fighting to end injustice & will not stop untill people recognise the value of carers and that carers get the financial support they need "

sounds like fighting talk to me.

So what part of that statement stops them from doing just that if they are the voice of carers then speak up for us they know how we feel it does not matter if they are a charity or not they must represent their membership and if they dont we should have the ability to remove them.

who appoints the leadership of carers uk ???

the only good thing from carers uk is this forum Image
Hi George. There is a fine line between speaking up, or standing up and being counted, and lobbying only for a change in the law. You can do one and be a charity, you cannot do the other. Let's say for a moment that I am the chief executive of a charity - which thankfully I am not: I can welcome the good bits of the strategy and point out that only a few will benefit, I can say that the government is effectively ignoring carers on low/negligible incomes, and decry the low level of Carers Allowance.

I cannot say: "The government MUST change the law!" I can protest about the things that I believe are wrong, but I must also look at and support other ways of supporting carers. For example, the introduction of health checks which does not need legislation change. I cannot choose one political party over another and recommend that individuals vote for it. I can inform carers of the different (assuming they are different) policies towards carers that each party has and encourage carers to vote according to the policies they agree with.

As for the leadership of Carers UK, they are elected by the membership: carers. The leadership is elected from carer members or recently ex-carer members.
HI CHERIL its me GEORGIE BOY


CARERS UK = they have said " they are the voice of carers fighting to end injustice & will not stop untill people recognise the value of carers and that carers get the financial support they need "

sounds like fighting talk to me.

So what part of that statement stops them from doing just that if they are the voice of carers then speak up for us they know how we feel it does not matter if they are a charity or not they must represent their membership and if they dont we should have the ability to remove them.

who appoints the leadership of carers uk ???

the only good thing from carers uk is this forum Image
yes the only good thing about this forum is the forum Image

Seems the ''Voice'' has gone dumb, can't even hear a whisper. Never in history have so many been so badly represnted as carers have been in the 21st Century, this is back to basics stuff that we are trying sort out, we are no further forward than we were before the announcement was made.

Wheres that thread about music?, Carers Fav band Status Quo.......... Image
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Reading Charles reply if the present trustees and management were changed if they also have to operate under the same charity rules and regs so changing the people won't make any difference.

Carerwatch has certain freedoms of speech that the charities don't have. Carerwatch as I've already said isn't there to be in competition with or to criticize the charities or another forum or website.
Its main purpose is to provide a forum that mainly concentrates on campaigning issues. It gives a base for carers to campaign on any particular issue that concerns them.
Ultimately Carewatch will be what carers make of it, if they don't use it will be nothing. If they use it as a gathering place for carers who want to campaign it has the potential to be of some use.
Until we try we really don't know what we can achieve? Did any of us know before hand that we could be carers and give up so much of our own freeedom and lives to look after someone else? I didn't, my life is far different to what I envisioned 10-15 yrs ago. Nobody knows what potential they or anyone or thing has until its tested? Did anyone think 3-4 years ago that 24/7 on-line carers would be attempting to organise a protest march?
CarersUK and PRTC have sent out the the information about Carerwatch in their news letter, there's an interview on the equal partners mentioning Carerwatch it's amongst all of the other information they provide, what use carers make of the information is in their own hands.
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CHARLES ive only quoted carers uk info from "ABOUT US " on web site re fighting for us ?

I work with registered charities NATIONAL EX P.O.W ASSOCIATION - A.T.S. W.R.A.C. ASSOCIATION - WAR WIDOWS ASSOCIATION .
Excluding welfare for members i would say over 90% of the work we do is trying to force government regardless of who they are to change the law as i write we are asking the M.O.D to change law regarding compensation to european ex p.o.w`s we are aslo trying to change law re overlaping benefits for war widows the war widows state pension is reduced on average by £55 per week. we are also tring to change law re A.Allowance awarded to ex service men/woman we want this changed to the Constant Care allowance and paid by veterans agency at the moment veterans have to prove that their disability is "war/service related" and its very difficult to do so, its no more cash but if veteran in receipt of C.C. allowance they receive funeral grant of upto £1-500 .

As far as i know there is nothing in our constitution to stop us from trying to change government legislation and i dont believe we have upset the charity commission .
Hi everyone

Cheryl and I have just spoken on the telephone, we
sent the proposal to the agm but that meeting is not
until November 12th.
We would like to go ahead with a protest this year,
if we have enough help and support in arranging to
organise it.
please PM cheryl or myself and we will discuss this.

krys
xxx
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As Krys has said we would like to organise a protest march this year.
Judging by the posts from other carers they are interested in doing something sooner rather than later. But we do need the support and help from other carers, if you'd like to join in please PM us so we know whether to continue with pursueing this idea.

Cheryl x
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CHARLES ive only quoted carers uk info from "ABOUT US " on web site re fighting for us ?

As far as i know there is nothing in our constitution to stop us from trying to change government legislation and i dont believe we have upset the charity commission .
I know, George. All I did was point out the legal restrictions placed on all charities. It's not about whether we have upset the charity commission - it's about making sure we don't. I can think of organisations that applied for charitable status but were turned down because their sole aim was to change government legislation. The reason seems to be that if you are campaigning on a legislative platform you are in effect a political party. I'm not sure I understand that one, but there you go.

It's about making sure that you meet your charitable objects in more than one way - campaigning for change is ok but you have to make sure it's not the only thing you do to help your constituent members.
There are charities that manage to provide services and campaign for changes in legislation, to the best of my knowledge charitable status doesn't preclude lobbying as long as it isn't politically motivated.

There is no doubt that the local branches are frequently a force for good but the problem with the national arm of CUK seems to be that it is incapable of lobbying strongly and therefore effectively and that it has a nasty habit of endorsing government proposals that don't even begin to deliver, can anyone wonder that so many carers feel frustrated with having a body that maintains it's the voice of carers yet routinely fails to either convey the views and concerns of carers or achieve change.

The dangers of being seen to be too close to government and involved in policy making, which I understand CUK was when the carers' strategy was drawn up, has been illustrated by the involvement of some of the disability charities in the reform of Incapacity Benefit, they are now crying foul but it's too late, by their involvement with government they have lent their approval to the reform and have lost all credibility with those effected by the changes.