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Liz takes action to support Leicester’s unpaid carers

[18/09/2020 | No comment]

During the pandemic, the number of unpaid carers has roughly doubled, with 4.5 million more people taking on unpaid caring responsibilities, bringing the total to at least 9 million. It’s thought that this number may be far higher, as so many people don’t recognise that the essential support they’re giving to family, friends, or neighbours on a regular basis, would be considered “care”.

Many unpaid carers are also balancing jobs, childcare and other responsibilities, and while there is support available, many report the process of accessing the right support can be confusing and overwhelming.

Today I met with key agencies in Leicester to discuss what can be done to make sure that all carers receive the support they need.

Representatives from East Midlands Ambulance Service, University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust, Leicester City Council, Age UK and the Carer’s Centre joined the meeting. Leicester West constituent Dave Towers also spoke – as a carer for elderly relatives, he provided invaluable insight into the issues faced by unpaid carers. We discussed the need for early identification of carers by services, clearer pathways to access support, greater recognition by health and social care professionals of the central role that carers play, and how a more co-ordinated approach by services could benefit carers.

Real consensus on the need to better support carers was reached, and I’ll be meeting again with these key agencies over the coming weeks to discuss in more detail the practical steps that can be taken to achieve this.

If you are an unpaid carer, or if you receive support from an unpaid carer, and you’d like to share your experiences, please email me at {at} parliament(.)uk.

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