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Carers UK reaction to Budget 2021

03 March 2021

The Chancellor failed to mention social care in the Budget 2021 statement.  

Helen Walker, Chief Executive of Carers UK said:

“Despite his pledge to do whatever it takes to protect livelihoods through the pandemic, the Chancellor’s Budget statement completely fails to address social care and other essential public services and we are angry that no immediate or longer term support for social care, was announced. Without key social care services, some families will not be able to return to work.

Families have been under huge strain, with 81% of carers taking on more care than before the pandemic, placing a huge toll on their health and finances. Throughout the pandemic they have gone above and beyond to protect our health and social care systems, many without having any breaks and support for an entire year. This has left significant numbers of carers at breaking point. They deserve to know what the Government is planning to do to address social care shortfalls now and that reform will address the longer term.  

We are deeply concerned that families, having borne the brunt of this pandemic will be expected to do more for longer if there are not continued critical social care funds in the new financial year. This is short sighted and unsustainable.  Like many others, we will be urging Government to continue short term funding from April 2021 and to repeat its promise of bringing social care reform proposals later in the year.

We welcome the extension of the furlough scheme until September 2021; this has been a lifeline for many working carers who have been unable to balance work and their caring responsibilities while day and support services have remained closed or dramatically reduced.

While we welcome the £20 uplift to Universal Credit being extended for six months, we are extremely disappointed that the Chancellor has not provided any support for those on legacy benefits and specific support for carers. We asked the Government to introduce a £20 a week supplement to those entitled to Carer’s Allowance, without which many carers who are struggling to just make ends meet will continue to face significant financial hardship.

Until there is long-term investment in social care, and increased support for carers, life will only become more difficult for the UK’s families.”

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