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£3.5bn care cuts mean carers face more pressure with less support

02 July 2014

Cuts to social care funding have reached £3.53 billion over the past four years, a survey published today by the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) shows.

Responding to the new figures, Carers UK said the continuing reductions of local government funds alongside growing need for services is leaving families who are already struggling under impossible pressure.

Heléna Herklots, Chief Executive of Carers UK said:

“Whilst the Government’s new social care laws and a fund to bring together NHS and social care services have been welcome - these measures are being undermined by massive cuts to local government which are hitting social care services hard. As a result, we face a stark reality of a rapidly rising number of older and disabled people needing social care, whilst fewer and fewer able to access the support they need.

Families are unable to fill the gap left by care cuts. The number of people providing full-time care to loved ones has soared to over 1.4 million, and cuts to the support they receive risks pushing carers to breaking point. This cannot continue, and unless Government acts to place social care funding on a sustainable footing, the future for older and disabled people and families struggling to care for them, is even bleaker still.”

The charity has warned that growing numbers of people will be forced to give up work and into ill-health and isolation as a result of caring without the support they need.

Today’s annual budget survey from ADASS shows that spending on social care has fallen by 12 per cent since 2010, while the numbers looking for support has risen by 14 per cent.

The association says the savings local councils have had to make in their budgets are equivalent to £3.53 billion over the past four years.

Media contacts

Steve McIntosh
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Maggie Stratton
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Notes to editors

Carers UK is a charity led by carers, for carers – our mission is to make life better for carers.

  • We give expert advice, information and support
  • We connect carers so no-one has to care alone
  • We campaign together for lasting change
  • We innovate to find new ways to reach and support carers

ADASS Budget Survey 2014 will be available at

Facts about carers:

  • Across the UK there are 6.5 million people caring for a loved one who is older, seriously ill or disabled. This number is set to rise to 9 million by 2037.
  • Full-time carers are twice as likely to be in bad health as non-carers.
  • An estimated 2.3 million people have given up work at some point to care for older or disabled loved ones, and 3 million have cut working hours.
  • Over 1.4 million people care for over 50 hours a week.
  • Carers save the economy an estimated £119 billion per year with the unpaid care they provide, an average of £18,473 per carer.

Source: Facts about carers (2014) Carers UK

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