PM To Look At Idea Of Raising CA By £20 A Week


Not only increase Carers Allowance by £20 per week, which is long overdue, but alter other aspects for below are the current conditions

The type of care you provide
You need to spend at least 35 hours a week caring for someone. This can include:

helping with washing and cooking
taking the person you care for to a doctor’s appointment
helping with household tasks, like managing bills and shopping
If you or the person you care for are affected by coronavirus, you can still claim Carer’s Allowance if you provide care remotely. This includes giving emotional support over the phone or online.

Your eligibility
All of the following must apply:

you’re 16 or over
you spend at least 35 hours a week caring for someone
you’ve been in England, Scotland or Wales for at least 2 of the last 3 years (this does not apply if you’re a refugee or have humanitarian protection status)
you normally live in England, Scotland or Wales, or you live abroad as a member of the armed forces (you might still be eligible if you’re moving to or already living in an EEA country or Switzerland)
you’re not in full-time education
you’re not studying for 21 hours a week or more
you’re not subject to immigration control
your earnings are £128 or less a week after tax, National Insurance and expenses
If your earnings are sometimes more than £128 a week you might still be eligible for Carer’s Allowance. Your average earnings may be calculated to work out if you’re eligible.

Calculating your earnings
Your earnings are any income from employment and self-employment after tax, National Insurance and expenses.

Expenses can include:

50% of your pension contributions
equipment you need to do your job, for example specialist clothing
travel costs between different workplaces that are not paid for by your employer, for example fuel or train fares
business costs if you’re self-employed, for example a computer you only use for work
If you pay a carer to look after the disabled person or your children while you work, you can treat care costs that are less than or equal to 50% of your earnings as an expense. The carer must not be your spouse, partner, parent, child or sibling.

Example
You earn £100 a week (after tax, National Insurance and other expenses) and spend £60 a week on care while you work. You can treat £50 of this as an expense.

Payments that do not count as earnings include:

money received from an occupational or private pension
contributions towards your living or accommodation costs from someone you live with (they cannot be a tenant or boarder)
the first £20 a week and 50% of the rest of any income you make from someone boarding in your home
a loan or advance payment from your employer
If you get State Pension
You cannot get the full amount of both Carer’s Allowance and your State Pension at the same time.

If your pension is £67.25 a week or more, you will not get a Carer’s Allowance payment.

If your pension is less than £67.25 a week, you’ll get a Carer’s Allowance payment to make up the difference.

If you get Pension Credit
If your State Pension is more than £67.25 a week, you will not get a Carer’s Allowance payment but your Pension Credit payments will increase instead.

If you’ve deferred your State Pension, the income you would get from it is included when working out if you’re eligible for Carer’s Allowance.

So what needs changing

your earnings are £128 or less a week after tax, National Insurance and expenses – should be changed so that the £128 is made equivalent to the National Living Wage

You cannot get the full amount of both Carer’s Allowance and your State Pension at the same time.

If your pension is £67.25 a week or more, you will not get a Carer’s Allowance payment. – this again should be matching the National Living Wage

This would mean the Carers Allowance would be a more substantial benefit available to many more carers.

Same Difference

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Agency social workers’ turnover and pay agreements ‘not beneficial’ : Community Care


Four in ten English councils lack confidence they will have enough social workers to meet their needs over the next year, as the vast majority struggle to recruit experienced practitioners, a government study has found. Thirty two per cent of directors of children’s services (DCSs) said they were ‘not very confident’ that they would have enough […]

Source: Agency social workers’ turnover and pay agreements ‘not beneficial’ : Community Care

Invisible unpaid carers going hungry in lockdown


Many organisations, including the Government relate to Carers Allowance as the means for survival, however, for this to be achieved the Allowance needs to be substantially increased.

Currently, Carers Allowance is £67.25 per week and to qualify 35 hours of care needs to be undertaken. So, assuming only 35 hours per week is worked, but it will, most likely, be more, then the hourly rate is £1.93. This could be the only income the family carer is receiving, surely a more reasonable rate for Carers Allowance should be based on the National Living Wage of £8.72, so, on 35 hours per week the Allowance should be £305.20. Then when you start to draw the State Pension the Carers Allowance will stop.

If a Family carer is able to do some paid when then they are not allowed to earn more than £128.00. So, family carers who are not able to work, they are being penalised by only getting the current £67.25. So, for then the £305.20 is more realistic.

Again people relying on Social Care and their families are being left behind financially.

This is when Family Carers save the UK well over £130 billion a year.

This is in addition to the way paid carers are treated by this Government.

This Government wants Social Care on the cheap and if this is not changed with more realistic Central Government funding to Local Authorities for Social Care, then social Care in any realistic form could well disappear before too long.

But this Government and many previous Government do not and have not cared, where is their Duty of Care. This does not start and finish with the NHS, for Social Care and health are and will for ever being interrelated.

My petition, Solve the crisis in Social Care covers much of the above and other related issues.

https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/solve-the-crisis-in-social-care

For further information see, https://www.dropbox.com/s/74ckd926thbrlo8/Solve%20the%20crisis%20in%20Social%20Care%205.docx?dl=0

But will the Government listen and then take the required action, well from past experience I do doubt it, unless there is another, unexpected U-Turn.

Unpaid carers were isolated even before lockdown – now we’re invisible | Society | The Guardian


Around 6.5 million carers in the UK are propping up the NHS by keeping loved ones safe at home. Where is their recognition?

Source: Unpaid carers were isolated even before lockdown – now we’re invisible | Society | The Guardian

Unpaid family carers ‘feel completely ignored’ by Government amid the Coronavirus pandemic – Welfare Weekly


Government under pressure to increase the value of Carer’s Allowance to help the UK’s army of 6.5 million unpaid carers.

Source: Unpaid family carers ‘feel completely ignored’ by Government amid the Coronavirus pandemic – Welfare Weekly

Petition – Solve the Crisis in Social Care


We all know there is a crisis in Social Care and there is a promise of  a Green Paper, which currently, is down to the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson and the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care , Matt Hancock.  If you care about Social Care these two gentlemen need to create action to solve the crisis in social care , hence the Petition – Solve the Crisis in Social Care. so please consider the following:

Dear Friends,

I just added the petition “Solve the crisis in Social Care”.

It would mean a lot to me if you took a moment to add your name because:

Just in Adult Social Care demand has increased by 1.6% since 2015-16, The Health Foundation report, 23 October 2018, https://www.health.org.uk/news-and-comment/news/demand-for-adult-social-care-services-has-increased-by-16-since-2015-16.

This is not taking into account the demand for Children’s Social Care and the increase in demand since 2018, but as stated in the report, ‘At the same time, growth in government spending has only seen a 0.4% increase in real terms and the 10,670 fewer people received long term social care support’, effectively a substantial decrease in funding.  This will and is having an impact on health care services and adds to the health funding crisis.

Until all social care is sufficiently funded for children and adults, be they elderly, disabled, or in poor health, health services will be substantially affected, and health funding will need to be increased to compensate, to some degree, for the substantial underfunding of social care.

It is not only causing distress and concern for persons in need of care, but also affecting their families, whose own health will be deteriorating due to the lack of Social Care and who in time will also need social and health care

I am a Family Carer and can see this happening for a considerable number of years for my own adult disabled daughter and how it has affected my own health and that of my wife.

But funding is but one element of the Social Care Crisis, as good quality care is also a casualty, not only due to the increasing demand for social care, but the substantial lack of persons wishing to enter the caring profession.

Here the lack of a wage/salary which matches the responsibilities, which need to be undertaken, the length of shifts, the number of unsocial hours, the care required in relation to the degree of disability and need and others.

Austerity cuts to local authorities are partly to blame for some areas of this crisis, which has impacted on the funding available for social care, where the need is increasing, the lack of workers in social care and the increases to the National Living Wage.

These problems relate to the whole area of care, be it in relation to Care and Nursing Homes, Supported Living, or Home Care.

https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/solve-the-crisis-in-social-care

Real change happens when everyday people like you and I come together and stand up for what we believe in.  Together we can reach heaps of people and help create change around this important issue.

After you’ve signed the petition please also take a moment to share it with others.  It’s super easy – all you need to do is forward this email or share this link on Facebook or Twitter:

https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/solve-the-crisis-in-social-care

More than 600 people quit work every day to care for older and disabled relatives : Welfare Weekly


More than 600 people a day are having to give up working to provide care for older and disabled relatives, leading to calls for the government and UK employers to increase support for family carers.

Research by the charity Carers UK found that 2.6 million have quit their job to care for a loved one who is older, disabled or seriously ill, with nearly half a million (468,000) leaving their job in the last two years alone – more than 600 people a day.

The startling figure represents a 13% increase since Carers UK and pollsters at YouGov surveyed members of the general public in 2013.

According to the findings, more working people are providing unpaid care for loved-ones than previously thought, with almost 5 million adults in the UK forced to juggle between their work and caring for family members.

 

Source: More than 600 people quit work every day to care for older and disabled relatives : Welfare Weekly

The first lesson from my life as a carer? There is such a thing as society | Anna Cosslett | Opinion | The Guardian


It’s leaflets at the moment. If my son sees any, in a cafe for instance, he wants them all. Later he will want to go through them and then destroy each one, tearing them into tiny pieces. We’ve got him down to a maximum of three. This is progress. When he lived at home, it was books – each one to be looked through swiftly, then reshelved on the other side of the room. If we went outside, every item on display in the two village shops had to be named three times. I stopped going outside. I stopped trying to speak to anyone on the phone, because my son knew that if he stood next to me and shrieked like an agonised seagull no one could hear a thing.

I have spent a large part of my life as a carer for my son, whom I shall call Huw (he is now a vulnerable adult) who has severe autism and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). I was helped for part of that time by my daughter, Rhiannon. There are around 7 million carers in the UK – that’s one in 10 people – and that doesn’t include parents whose children aren’t sick or disabled. So many carers’ stories go untold. Why? Probably because it’s exhausting, especially if lack of sleep is part of the picture (typical in cases of autism). It may be because unaffected people feel uncomfortable thinking about it, but it’s possible that they just don’t think about it, full stop – because our stories aren’t out there. And yet it’s possible we will all be carers at some point.

Many people will find, at some stage in their life, that they will need to assume responsibility for someone who cannot care for themselves. Caring is a vital part of our society, and for most people it cannot be outsourced to an expensive nursing home or private staff.

Yet caring remains undervalued. A catchphrase from the Thatcher era, seeking to justify the destruction of many social support systems, was that “spoon-feeding only teaches the shape of the spoon”. This ignores the fact that people from babyhood to frail old age often do actually need to be spoon-fed. By insisting that society did not exist, the Tories set in motion a pretence that such needs do not exist, and the people who cater for them were not worthy of recognition, beyond some vague adulation of “family values”.

Caring can either break you or make you a stronger, wiser person. Many people, most of them women, can be broken by the burdens they have had to take on, now that society has largely turned its back on their needs as support systems for sick and disabled people and their families have been further dismantled.

 

Source: The first lesson from my life as a carer? There is such a thing as society | Anna Cosslett | Opinion | The Guardian

Carers Rights Day poll: Carers ‘not recognised’ by friends or family : Care Industry News


By 

Unpaid carers missing out on vital support as ‘public is unable to recognise friends and family that care’

More than half (51%) believe they ‘don’t know’ a single friend or family member, looking after a loved one, despite 1 in 10 people in the UK being carers.

The general public remain ‘in the dark’, as a majority drastically underestimate the number of carers in their own family, friendship groups  and places of work, according to new research by Carers UK released for Carers Rights Day (24 November).

The research released today shows that more than half (51%) believe they don’t know a single family member or friend who cares, whilst as many as 3 in 5 workers (62%) believe they don’t know ‘any work colleagues’ who help look after a loved one. In reality, 1 in 10 (10%) people in the UK are carers and 1 in 9 people in the workforce are juggling their paid job with unpaid caring[1].

The findings come one year after Carers UK’s Missing Out report showed the impact of carers not being identified quickly enough. Amongst carers who ‘struggled’ to recognise their roles, more than half saw their finances (52%) and mental health (78%) negatively affected as a result[2].

Alarmingly, even amongst those members of the public who did manage to recognise that a friend or family member looked after someone, as many as 3 in 5 (58%) did not ‘suggest where to find further information on caring’ and the number rose to 65% amongst those who knew carers in the workplace.

Amongst all of those polled, including those that had not recognised carers in their social circles or at work, two thirds (67%) said they would feel confident providing ‘emotional support’ to a new carer. Yet, only 2 in 5 (42%) would feel confident pointing people in the direction of information about caring. Carers UK is asking the public to equip themselves with more knowledge and understanding of how to support carers, to improve confidence in reaching out to carers.

The findings also revealed differences amongst men and women, carers, and non-carers, and those of different ages:

• Gender: Women are more likely to say they know a friend or family member who is a carer (43%) compared with men (34%). Female workers (27%) are also more likely than men (17%) to say they know a colleague who is caring.

Among those that know carers, women were more likely (42%) than men (34%) to have suggested sources of information to friends and family and significantly more likely to have suggested information to colleagues with caring roles (35%) than men (25%).

• Age: Despite being at the peak age of caring themselves, those aged 45-54 are only slightly more likely (40%) to say they have any family or friends that are carers compared with 39% of the wider public.

• Carers and non-carers: Unsurprisingly, those who have never had an unpaid caring role are more likely (59%) to say they don’t have any friends or family who care. Only 17% of current carers say they don’t have any friends or family that are caring.

Heléna Herklots CBE, Chief Executive of Carers UK, said:

“More and more of us are stepping into caring roles, yet carers all-too-often remain hidden in plain sight at work, in friendships, and even in the families. Often, it takes somebody else to tell us that we are a carer before we recognise ourselves as such.

This year, we are encouraging every member of the public to learn more about caring and where to go for advice and assistance. It is only through our concerted efforts to identify and support carers that we can alleviate some of the emotional and practical challenges facing the 6.5 million people looking after an ill, older or disabled loved one.”

Every year, Carers UK uses Carers Rights Day (24 November) to reach the 6.5 million with crucial information about the rights, financial support, and practical help they are entitled to; including benefits, such as Carer’s Allowance, respite, equipment and technology.

This year, under the theme of ‘Make Connections, Get Support’, Carers UK is reaching out beyond the 1 in 10 of us who care, calling on the general public to equip themselves with enough knowledge to feel confident identifying and directing carers towards support.

Carers UK has developed a range of tools in time for Carers Rights Day, to help both the general public and carers early in their caring journey get the information and support they need:

• Looking after someone’, its annual guide to carers’ rights and the practical and financial support available: www.carersuk.org/help-and-advice/get-resources/looking-after-someone

• Carers UK’s local directory, which allows carers to find support hubs, services, respite, and charities near you: www.carersuk.org/help-and-advice/get-support/local-support

• Upfront, the first online guide of its kind gives tailored financial and practical information to those who are new to caring: www.carersuk.org/upfront

• Online factsheets and guides on financial and practical support available for carers: www.carersuk.org/help-and-advice

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Source : Carers Rights Day poll: Carers ‘not recognised’ by friends or family : Care Industry News