The DEMOS Report … 63 pages worth available in .pdf format … mentioned by CUK itself :
For all readers , details of the 12 " Recommendations " made … Report itself expands on a few with their thinking behind the recommendations :
The Department for Work and Pensions should abolish the Carer’s Allowance and replace it with a Universal Carer’s Income (UCI) for all carers providing more than 35 hours a week of care, paid at the same rate as Job Seeker’s Allowance (£73.10 per week).
To give the millions of carers that are working a chance at a better work/life balance, we recommend :
The Department for Work and Pensions should introduce a Carer’s Working Credit to give carers the right to pay protected part time working.
The Government should immediately introduce the right to one year’s unpaid care leave.
The Government should work towards introducing one year’s paid care leave funded by abolishing the State Pension ‘triple lock’.
Employees should have the right to 10 days of annual paid care leave.
To help ensure that carers are better identified, we recommend :
A duty should be placed on local authorities to identify carers in their communities.
A duty should be placed on NHS bodies to identify carers and support their health and wellbeing
To help carers access peer support networks and better support, we recommend :
Creation of a national network of Carer Forums, modelled on the National Network of Parent Carer Forums for parent carers of disabled children.
The Department of Health and Social Care and the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government should establish a joint £215m programme to boost the number of occupational therapy training places in England by 10%.
To ensure that we utilise the promise of technology to better support carers, we utilise the promise of technology to better support carers, we recommend :
Innovate UK should launch a £50m innovation fund for the development of home based robotics to assist carers.
( Attention all male lone carers … a robotic skivvy … bring it on ! )
Introduce VAT exemption on purchases of technology designed to support carers in the home.
Pilot robotic care assistants for informal caregivers in ‘left behind’ region._**
CUK’s response :
Responding to Demos’ report, Helen Walker, Chief Executive at Carers UK, said:
“We welcome Demos’ call for a properly established relationship between unpaid carers and the state. They too have highlighted the urgent need for carers’ incomes to be increased, particularly those in receipt of Carer’s Allowance. Despite carers having to provide at least 35 hours of care per week to receive it, Carer’s Allowance remains the lowest benefit of its kind. That’s why, through our Fairer for Carers campaign, we have been consistently calling for it to be increased, as well as better support for those juggling work and care including a right to paid care leave.
( Note : Fairer for carers ? A classic smoke and mirrors job : > https://www.carersuk.org/forum/social-area/members-corner/fairer-for-carers-34307?hilit=fairer%20for%20carers > )
“We think Government needs to look closely at these proposals, particularly carers’ rights at work and their incomes, within the Green Paper on Social Care. The amount of care provided by families is continually on the rise, both in terms of the number of carers but also the amount of care provided per week. Yet the amount of practical services provided through local councils is falling, with fewer carers receiving support to take a much-needed break and fewer getting carer’s assessments. This cannot be right and has to change.
“Carers UK has long been campaigning for better support for carers, including urging Government to provide carers with the right to paid care leave whilst at work and increasing funding for vitally important carers’ breaks. The Green Paper is a golden opportunity for the Government to act to ensure carers get a fairer deal.”
MY response ?
1. Half the carer / kinship army are on The Street … close / at / below the official poverty line.
Raising CA to level of JSA will do absolutely NOTHING to change that … even DOUBLING CA will have NO effect.
It’s estimated that 110,000 of our fellow carers will have used a food bank in this calender year.
Said recommendation will , again , do nothing to stop this ever increasing tidal wave !
2. Juggling work with caring … NOTHING on the various barriers … 21 Hour Rule / effect on carees’ benefits / cost of replacement care etc. etc. … how many LONE carers amongst our ranks ???
3. Work / work / work … what about the low millions who CANNOT juggle work with caring ?
ABSOLUTELY NOTHING in the Report !
4. Paid leave / more time off ?
What better incentitive for employers NOT to hire carers … especially in the smaller business sector ?
Just put yourself in the postion of a small business employing upto 10 staff … fancy playing Russian roullette , never knowing when one member of staff is unavailable for work as their caring duties take precedent ?
5. Identifying carers ?
Don’t get me started again on that one !
HOW CAN ANYONE DECIDE POLICIES FOR CARERS IF ONLY , AROUND , 1 IN 11 ARE KNOWN ???
Waste of time / effect / money … anyone can see that said Report was written by someone with NO knowledge of actual caring ?
To be brutually frank , I’m surprised that CUK even mentioned the Report … for all the good contained therein !