Today (11 June 2018) I attended a Parliamentary launch of Carers Week to pledge his support for their campaign to see carers get better support.
Carers Week takes place between 11-17 June 2018. It is an annual campaign to raise awareness of caring, highlighting the challenges carers ace and recognise the contribution they make to families and communities throughout the UK.
For Carers Week 2018,the campaign is looking at all the ways we can support carers to stay Healthy and Connected; building communities which support carers to look after the person they care for well, while recognising that they are individuals with health and well-being needs of their own.
At the launch of Carers Week I was shown the research findings for this year’s campaign. The main findings are:
• 74% of carers in Wales said they had suffered mental ill health as a result of caring.
• 57% of carers in Wales expect their mental health and well-being to get worse in the next two years.
• 61% of carers in Wales said they have suffered physical ill health as a result of caring.
• 45% of carers in Wales expect that they will be able to provide less or no care in the future because of poor physical health.
Social care is a devolved matter, but the Carers Support Allowance and all other benefits are controlled by the UK Government and this is placing extreme pressure on carers looking after loved ones.
The changes to social security have been poorly implemented. At each stage in the Commons I voted against the UK Government’s measures which have undermined the ability of carers to look after their loved ones.
The research shown to me was deeply unnerving. It showed that 45% of carers in Wales expect that their physical health will decline to such an extent that they will be unable to provide care. It also noted how 57% of carers in Wales expect their mental health to get worse in the next two years. Two damning statistics that should shame the UK Government to take action and reform the welfare system.
Changes to benefits started with things like the Bedroom Tax then it slowly crept towards pensions and now it is hitting people who provide care and support. It is obvious for all to see that these policies are now costing more money than they save and are putting peoples mental and physical health at risk.