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Your help needed to compile 'discrimination dossier'

09 April 2009
Carers UK are gathering evidence make the case for new legal protections for carers against discrimination. If you have been discriminated against or harrassed as a result of being a carer please fill in our equalities survey and tell us about your experiences.

One carer has told us about the problems trying to rent a house :

"We looked to rent a house privately and have encountered much discrimination being refused property time and again. The most blantent had 3 houses to let. They would keep asking 'is the nipper still with you?' - meaning my disabled son. Lots of people will ask if he is destructive, starts fires, etc, all based on ignorance. Its bad."

Another carer has told of her problems getting childcare :

"I am a Mum to 3 children, one of whom has a severe learning disability. We face discrimination with regard to child care. My local authority have only agreed to fund one day per week in holiday club for my disabled daughter. My sons are able to attend full time, but due to her needs, my daughter can only attend 1 day, even though we pay for all three to attend. This means that I may have to give up work as we have no other means of looking after her in holidays. If I didn't have a disabled child, child care would be no problem so this really isn't fair."

Other carers are being denied access to important health care because of the lack of support :

"I need surgery for a prolapse and a hernia but I have been told there is not much point having it while I am still a carer as it will just come back again due to my caring responsibilities and all the lifting I have to do."

"I have been told I need an operation for carpel tunnel. I asked who would do my daughters physio and help me with her care? I got no answer so I haven't had the operation."

Following years of campaigning by Carers UK and the success of carer Sharon Coleman in the European Court of Justice, the Government announced in April that it intends to ban discrimination and harassment against carers, by protecting people who are 'associated with' someone who is disabled. This new legal right will be part of the Equalities Bill which will be published at the end of April. For more information on the Government's announcement visit more...

Carers UK are creating a 'discrimination dossier' to build evidence to make sure that these proposals become law. If you have been the victim of discrimination or harrassment as a result of your caring responsibilities then we would like to hear your story. Our online survey doesn't take long, and getting real experiences from carers who have suffered discrimination will make a real difference in getting this new law through Parliament.

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