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Carers UK responds to new threshold for social care

23 October 2014

Today the Government has published the statutory regulations and guidance which accompany the Care Act 2014. We now have the details of how the Act will work in practice including the threshold at which carers and those with care needs will be eligible for support.

Carers UK has campaigned with the Care and Support Alliance for improvements throughout the development of the regulations and guidance arguing that without a lower threshold, thousands would continue to miss out on the care and support they need to live their lives.

Responding to the publication of eligibility regulations, the Emily Holzhausen, Director of Policy at Carers UK said:

“The Care Act gives landmark new rights to carers, for the first time giving them the same entitlements to assessment and support as those they care for. We welcome this recognition of the contribution of carers and the need to support them to live their own lives at the same time as caring for a loved one.

"We are pleased that the Government has responded to concerns about the funding available to implement the new rights by announcing today that additional funds will be targeted through a new grant to be paid to local authorities.

"Historic underfunding of social care has meant hundreds of thousands of older and disabled people have missed out on vital support. In many cases, relatives have increasingly stepped in to fill the gap left by shrinking social care services and this has come at a huge cost to families and to society more widely as people struggle without support or fall back on expensive emergency care.

"The publication of this threshold today brings a mixed picture for families and more work needs to be done to ensure that we achieve the aspiration of individual wellbeing that is at the heart of the Care Act. This applies to people needing care and support as well carers.

"Whilst the threshold means the impact of caring should be quickly recognised, the eligibility criteria for adults will mean that many older and disabled people will continue to struggle without the basic support they need.

"We will continue to call for a properly funded care system where a lower threshold means moderate needs for care and support are met. Families have to be supported in the round to truly transform our care system."

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