Good morning everyone
We wanted to let you know that today Carers UK has released new research, based on a survey of over 3,300 carers, which reveals that the unprecedented financial pressures that many unpaid carers are facing has now become unsustainable. We’d also like to encourage you to contact your MP about the cost of living crisis.
The research reveals that just under half (45%) of unpaid carers are currently unable to manage their monthly expenses. A further worry is that just under half (46%) of the carers surveyed also feel the oncoming increases in energy bills will negatively affect their own physical and mental health or that of the person they care for. Many said they were having to take difficult steps to manage their monthly expenses:
Furthermore, 58% have cut back on heating and 14% have already fallen into arrears with their energy bills. In the months ahead 42% of carers thought that they would not be able to heat their home to a safe level and 32% are worried they will have to use a foodbank.
To read the full report, Under Pressure: Caring and the cost of living crisis, please click on this link: https://www.carersuk.org/images/Carers_UK_research_briefing__-_Under_Pressure_-_Caring_and_the_cost_of_living_crisis.pdf
I expect the findings in the report will be familiar to many of you and we would really value any comments or feedback you would like to share within this topic. We will share all of your posts with colleagues in our policy team.
We would also like to ask you to write to your MP to call on the Government to provide urgent financial support for carers who are facing rising prices and energy bills. You can do this through the following link and it only takes a couple of minutes.
With good wishes
My MP is Liz Kendall (Leicester West): letter sent.
A very well presented and informative report. I note the fieldwork was carried out in February but could not see any information as to when in February, so it is not clear whether the effects of the Ukraine war were taken into account or on peoples minds in the responses they gave.
Apart from the untold unneeded suffering of that war, it is clearly going to lead to further energy price increases, exacerbate the cost of living crisis greatly, and put even more pressure on carers and those they care for.
How best to gather evidence and understand these further, very recent, cost of living pressures?
Separately, on the points about ‘strategic investment’ I wonder whether there might be a further point about helping carers to move to clean energy, which if done right, might result in a cost saving or at least be cost neutral to carers. A scheme to ensure a just transition to clean energy for carers and those they care for, is needed on the scale of a Motability Scheme like initiaitve or bigger.
Thanks for taking the time to read the ‘Under Pressure’ report and provide some feedback. This is really appreciated and I will pass your post onto our policy team.
With good wishes
A 45% of carers were using their savings to manage their monthly expenses. B Not only
does this reduce financial resilience, it significantly impacts their ability to plan for the
future and to have the money they need for retirement"
I’m not sure if B ,from the second sentence onwards) was something carers reported in the survey, or the words of carersuk.
If it was the latter, then it’s not possible to deduce B from A . Further in depth , qualitative research would be required to dig down into how the fact that people are using their savings impacts on their finances and planning for retirement. For example
Some carers may be using their savings ATM, but on retirement may be due to a very large lump sum and a generous annual pension amount, even though at the moment they’re struggling because they’re only working part time .
They may be due to inherit the estate of the person they’re caring for after their death, or , once they’re on their own they may be able to release the equity they have in a large house they currently live in and buy something smaller.
It also makes the assumption that the carers who said they were using their savings weren’t already retired.