I've never had the ultra-demanding, but rewarding responsibility for being a carer, but I know a few people who have. The nearest I came to this was when I gave daily telephone support to my mother, when she was the sole carer for my step-father.
They were both retired, so the situation did not directly affect income. But I do understand that many people under retirement age forego a career (with pension) in order to devote their time to a loved one. No salary, no pension rights, etc.
However, some friends of mine are now in the process of approaching a large union, with a proposal which would give carers all the advantages of belonging to a public sector union.
It all began here: http://carolinepage.blog.suffolk.libdems.org/2011/12/02/paying-to-c...
Grey Pride has about 137000 members, although not all are internet-enabled. There must be many of our members who would welcome the extra security of belonging to a union. What do you think?
I'll be checking replies regularly, and giving any updates on progress as they happen. I suppose these things take time to gain momentum, but I can't help thinking this could be the start of something really worthwhile.
I received a response from my MP
Thank you for contacting me about the social care system.
The issue of funding for adult social care has been ignored for too long I would like to assure you that the Government is fully aware that the current system of social care funding is not fit for the long-term.
To support local authorities in the medium term, the Government has allocated an additional £2 billion a year by 2014-15 in the spending review to support the delivery of social care. This represents a total of £7.2 billion of extra support for social care over the next four years, including an unprecedented transfer of funds from the NHS to support social care services.
However the Government is committed to reforming the system to ensure that no-one is forced to sell their homes to pay for care. That is why the Government acted quickly to establish the Commission on Funding of Care and Support last year, to make recommendations for how this could be achieved.
The Government is now working to examine the Commission’s recommendations in full. I am sure you will understand that this issue is complex, but the Government does intend to bring forward a White Paper on this issue soon. This will set out the steps it will take to ensure that the social care market is fairer, cheaper and more sustainable so that people have access to the highest quality of care when they need it.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.
Thanks for the update. This is the first time I have seen news of the additional £2b., albeit 2-3 years hence, but then I do lag where politics is concerned.
It reads well as a bunch of stats, but I have to say I am suspicious at the mention of transferring money from our beleaguered NHS. We'll see what happens. I can't contact Caroline on this issue just at the moment, due to illness in the family.
Morning all - did you see over the weekend that a new website aimed at helping people rate and review care providers has been launched? The Good Care Guide has started quite a lot of debate, we've started a new discussion about it and would love your views - good idea?
Saw news of it via Twitter, I'll have a look at your discussion. Thanks.