Our new report Heading for Crisis: caught between caring and rising costs has been published. The report focusses on the impact of the cost of living crisis on unpaid carers and the research is based on a survey of over 13,000 unpaid carers, who completed our State of Caring survey 2022.
The report finds that:
• 1 in 6 carers are in debt as a result of their caring role, increasing to 2 in 5 for carers in receipt of Carer’s Allowance.
• The proportion of carers unable to afford their utility bills has more than doubled since last year to 14%.
• Carers in receipt of Carer’s Allowance are more likely to be cutting back on food and heating.
• Nearly all carers who are struggling to make ends meet (93%) agreed that the increase in the cost of living was having a negative impact on their mental and physical health.
Full report : News stories | Carers UK
If you need information and support on the cost of living, you can download our Feeling the financial pressure flyer from the Carers UK website and visit our support with living costs page. For further advice on caring issues, contact our Helpline team.
There is a very simple solution. Rather than wait for paid carers that don’t currently exist, pay family carers instead!!
We are the only group of people who are expected to have to work 35 hours a week caring to get carers allowance - our “pay”. After all, if we don’t do it, someone on at least minimum wages has to do it instead.
However, the government doesn’t recognise our labour as work at all. They want us to go out and work another 35 hours a week on top, to get a decent income - then they take all our first “income” away from us.
I cannot think of any other group of people this happens to.
Then, when you reach pension age, like me, you get nothing at all.
I first raised this at a Carers UK AGM in London in 2004!! My motion, to pay CA at the rate of the minimum wage, was passed almost unanimously.
Maybe now is the time to revive this idea. Then the disabled are cared for by people who truly care for them, and the carers would only have to do 35 hours a week, not 70, to earn a proper wage!!
Much is going to depend now on what the new Prime Minister and Chancellor decide. They have a lot to sort out and health and social care must not be forgotten. Which means, as far as I’m concerned, the main provider - carers - must not be forgotten.
Interesting: key personnel at my local council had not received this. They have now.