Wednesday, 12 Dec 2018
News

The British army of caregivers increases by one-third to $ 8 MILLION in conservative cuts

According to one report, nearly eight million people take care of their loved ones after increasing by more than one-third.

Caregivers have talked about mental health issues and poverty while a new analysis reveals that the British army of informal caregivers has grown 35% since 2001.

The Mirror launched the Fair Care for All campaign after the Conservatives cut 27% of public funding for social services since 2010.

This allowed 400,000 fewer people to receive professional help after the local money – strapped authorities tightened the eligibility criteria.

Parents and friends were forced to step in and fill the void, forcing many of them to quit their jobs.

The report of the independent think tank Demos estimates that informal caregivers save £ 139 billion a year at the NHS, but at the cost of a loss of quality of life.

Principal investigator Ben Glover said, "Unpaid caregivers support our social protection system as a whole, but for decades they have been taken for granted by policy makers."

Parents and friends were forced to intervene

The census data analysis estimates at 5.8 million the number of people in 2001, according to the report. This number rose to 6.5 million in 2011 before reaching 8 million in 2018.

The local government association estimates that councils will face a black hole of nearly 8 billion pounds by 2025. The national army of caregivers also includes thousands of children taking care of their parents and their grandparents.

Carers UK estimates that 12% of the UK population is now informal carers.

The government has not yet released its long-awaited Green Paper on Social Care and has done nothing to combat the crisis since Theresa May's "Dementia Tax Plan" cost her the general election.

MP Barbara Keeley, Minister of Social Assistance, said, "The explosion in the number of unpaid caregivers is directly attributable to the Conservative government's irresponsible and ruthless decision to reduce funding for the boards that saw the programs of care. financed by the state fall alarmingly.

It is estimated that 12% of the UK population is now informal caregivers.

"The Conservatives' relentless pursuit of austerity and their total neglect to fund the vital social protection programs on which so many vulnerable people depend have increasingly prompted friends and families to intervene, often at the cost of loss of life. time for their career and social life. and their health. "

Each year, more than 2.1 million adults become caregivers and almost as many find that their assistance tasks come to an end.

This high turnover means that solicitude will ultimately touch the lives of most of us. Three in five will take on family responsibilities at some point in their lives.

The report said: "The increase in the informal care population in the UK is one of the most important but least reported demographic changes in recent years.

"As our population continues to age, we can only expect to see a further increase in the size of the informal care economy in the coming decades."

The number of informal carers has increased

Demos asks that the caregiver allowance of £ 65 a week be increased at least to the same level as the job seeker 's allowance to get them out of poverty. The Labor Party was already committed to making this happen when it was elected.

Barbara Keeley, MP, added: "The Conservatives must follow the union movement to end this crisis of social services and commit to investing an additional 8 billion pounds in social services and increase the number of people in the workforce. caregiver assistance allowance in accordance with the job seeker 's allowance in order to give caregivers and the people they take care of. the support they desperately need. "

The current caregiver allowance is not available for many caregivers who work well although more than half of these are still employed.

In addition to the increase in benefits, the Think Tank's "Universal Carers Income" proposal would extend the eligibility criteria to two million additional grants.

That would cost an additional £ 10.2 billion, funded by a 1% increase in national insurance.

A government spokeswoman said, "It's just that we recognize the extremely important role that caregivers play in our society.

"Since 2010, we have increased the carer allowance rate, which means that caregivers can receive an extra £ 635 a year.

"Caregivers may also be eligible for higher rates of other benefits, including universal credit and pension credit."

Caregivers often report mental health issues

"We are treated like a cheap labor force"

Jacqui Darlington is the full-time help of son Joshua, who suffers from a severe form of Down syndrome.

The 26-year-old needs help with everything from the use of the bathroom to the kitchen to taking his medication, which he needs to stop the attacks of anxiety.

Jacqui, 58, was a teaching assistant, then a kindergarten nurse, but had to give up after Joshua left.

"We work around the clock and get a pittance," she said.

"The minimum wage is all we ask. We are treated like a cheap labor force. If millions of helpers stopped suddenly, the nation would be paralyzed.

"They know we will not do it because we love the people we care for."

Jacqui is a single mother and also has a son, Ashley, 28 years old. When she was forced to quit her job in 2012, the family had to move from the four-bed rented home to a two-bed apartment located in Rutland, in the East Midlands. Since then, Joshua has also been diagnosed with autism.

She said, "I struggled to keep a house, be a mother, a caregiver and have a career of just over six months before admitting that this situation was not working. I got sick of stress.

"I reluctantly abandoned work to become a full-time caregiver, but had to leave our house because I could not afford to keep it. All you need to do is eat basic food and not have luxury.

"It's easy to get in. When Ashley moved out I was not talking to anyone, Joshua was not talking.

"I became very upset and the doctor said," You just have to go out. " Joshua needs help showering, brushing his teeth and I need to get him to take his medicine.

"He manages to sleep about four hours a night and only with medication. I have slept four hours a night for 20 years. It's exhausting.

"Joshua is and will always be my handsome and beautiful son that I will continue to love, cherish and adore … even though I have never had a job description.

"But then again, it's not an ordinary job."

"It must change"

British caregivers have long been campaigning for their incomes to rise.

Helen Walker, Executive Director of Carers UK, said: "The number of care provided by families is constantly increasing, both in terms of the number of caregivers but also of care provided per week.

"Yet the number of practical services provided by local councils is declining, with fewer caregivers receiving help to take a much needed break and fewer caregiver assessment requests.

"It can not be right and must change.

"Carers UK has long advocated for better support for caregivers, including urging the government to give caregivers the right to paid day care leave and to increase funding for life-saving caregiver breaks.

"The Green Paper is a golden opportunity for the government to act to ensure a more equitable agreement for caregivers."

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Main reports of Mirror Online

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