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Cash bonus to give carers a break, Lib Dems promise - Page 4 - Carers UK Forum

Cash bonus to give carers a break, Lib Dems promise

All about money
Nilla wrote:Have you seen the latest? You can now snoop on your neighbours to see if they have a car on disability, if they have the government want you to snitch on them if you feel they don't need it by walking normally etc!

I am disgusted at the way our personal things are being put on the internet for all to see!
Big Brother is alive and well and running the UK Nilla. :roll:
Certainly is Bluebird but I had to giggle as my neighbour said her car was 2 years old, I used the DVLA thing and it was registered in 2000 :roll:
I for one hopes this will come off, we as carers have been used as a cheap way of providing a service, without a full payment. I personally think that we as carers deserve and earn every penny we get. Lets hope for the future.
Response from Paul Burstow
A few weeks ago Nick Clegg announced the first of a series of policies for carers. The Carer’s Bonus, £250 paid annually, on top of the Carers Allowance, for the carer to use as they see fit. The proposal sparked a lot of debate, and CarerWatch posted a strong critique of the plan. I am grateful for the opportunity to respond.

Caring responsibilities can come at any time in a person’s life and can exact a heavy price in both health and wealth. About 6 in 10 of us will become carers at some point in our lives, and 45% of carers have given up work to care.

The bonus idea was developed by the Liberal Democrats Ageing Society Working Group, which I chair, as part of our Age Ready Britain policy paper.

The bonus would be paid annually to Carers to use as they see fit, for example as a contribution toward extra costs such as taking a break. To start with it would be set at £125, doubling to £250 no later than 2020. The Bonus is more like a direct payment to contribute to things like respite care. It is not intended to be an answer to all the financial challenges faced by Carers.

This would put extra money in Carers’ hands to make their own decisions about how it can best support them. The Carer’s Bonus marks out our commitment to promoting the wellbeing of carers and is the first of a number of proposals aimed at better supporting carers that we spell out in our policy paper Age Ready Britain which will be published in September.

The £250 payment would be available to around a million people based on underlying entitlement to the benefit. So, for example, pensioners who are eligible for Carers allowance but because of overlapping benefit rules do not receive it would receive the Bonus. It would start at £125 and increase year on year to £250 no later than 2020.

The proposal builds on measures we have taken in Government like investing £400mn in NHS funded respite breaks, or new rights for Carers in the Care Act and Children and Families Act, and rights to flexible working.

I agree with the comments about the earnings disregard and the withdrawal of the benefit when engaged in education and these are issues we address on Age Ready Britain.

Thank you for the opportunity to respond.

* Paul Burstow is Liberal Democrat MP for Sutton and Cheam
It's a decent if limited response, but there is no explanation why they don't just raise CA to the level of Jobseekers allowance, which would cost an extra £500 a year per carer or so: £500M might sound like a lot but not when compared with building a single aircraft carrier, at a hefty £4 billion .... I prefer the offer from the Scottish National Party to do that, I'm voting Yes.
I would love to know why they gave the NHS the right to distribute £400 for carers breaks. Since when has the NHS been responsible for social care?
...................... and there's more

Lib Dems to offer 'perks' to Britain's unpaid carers

Read in full on this link
http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style ... 72255.html
Britain’s army of unpaid carers would receive a series of perks such as free hospital parking and be given greater powers in the NHS under Liberal Democrat plans to introduce “Carers’ Passports”.
We get free hospital parking anyway if we have our carees with us!
why don't they let us get out of this country for a holiday without stopping our benefits?
.............and there's more

http://www.libdemvoice.org/paul-burstow ... 42104.html
There are 6.5 million carers in the UK today looking after friends and family who started to need a little help to carry on their day to day lives. Sadly for both carers and those they care for, a little help can become a lot more as conditions deteriorate and people are able to do less for themselves.

That one in eight of us is willing to selflessly prioritise the needs of our loved ones is truly inspirational. But too often as a society we seem to punish rather than venerate and celebrate the sacrifices carers make. Carers UK tells us that 61% of carers have faced depression because of their caring role and 49% are struggling financially. Considered in the context that 45% have had to give up work to care, maybe neither of these financial or emotional pressures should surprise us.

But carers are the unsung heroes of our health and care system and save the state an estimated £119 billion – that’s more than the entire annual budget for the NHS.

Looking after carers isn’t just the right thing to do, but it makes financial sense too so in this government despite the deficit we have made a start. We’ve allocated more funding for carers breaks and enshrined new rights for carers in the Care Act. And I’m delighted that the Liberal Democrats have now nailed our colours to the mast and committed to going much further to give carers the fair deal that they deserve.

As Norman Lamb and I announced at the weekend, the Liberal Democrats will put carers front and centre of our manifesto with a package of support designed to ease the strain. We want to make it easier for carers to stay in work, encouraging employers to be more flexible, and we will make sure that carers who have left work get much more support to help them get back into the job market when they are able. We are also going to raise the amount you can earn before losing carers allowance to £150 to make sure work pays for carers. We will introduce a “carers’ passport” to give carers more information and more support through the NHS, including access to free hospital parking, and we will give every carer who cares for more than 35 hours a week a carers bonus worth £250.

We know that government can’t alleviate the emotional and physical toll care takes on millions of carers every day, but, having campaigned on carers’ issues for many years, I am delighted that we have committed to delivering a package of reforms in the next government that should make the practical challenges a lot easier. With our ageing population and projections suggesting an ever greater number of people will be relying on family carers in the years to come, none of us can afford to wait any longer.

* Paul Burstow is Liberal Democrat MP for Sutton and Cheam.
And what of those of us who are caring 24/7 and haven't a hope in hell of going back to work? By the way we DO work - probably 10 times harder than folk who get paid for their work!