Carers Rights Day 2022 is being held on Thursday 24th November. This year’s theme is ‘Caring Costs’ and tackles the costs involved in becoming a carer. The cost-of-living crisis has created unprecedented pressure on carers, which has not only affected their finances but their health and wellbeing.
Caring Costs in so many ways. It could be the cost to unpaid carers’ wellbeing and ability to access health services. Sometimes it’s the financial costs associated with looking after someone – or the effects on carers’ employment options. Taking care of someone may cost carers the quality of their relationships, through not being able to take time out to spend with friends and family or through changes to the relationship with those they care for. And the current cost of living crisis is being felt even more acutely by carers throughout the UK.
Carers Rights Day is an annual awareness raising event that brings organisations together to help carers in the local community understand their rights and learn how and where to get the help and support they are entitled to. The aims are to:
- ensure carers are aware of their rights
- let carers know where to get help and support
- raise awareness of the needs of carers
Whether someone has recently become a carer, realised they have been caring for a while without support or has been caring for someone for many years, it’s important they understand their rights and are able to access the support that is available to them as soon as they need it.
Carers need to know their rights wherever they are in their caring journey and regardless of setting; be that in the workplace, in accessing healthcare, when interacting with professionals or at home. This Carers Rights Day, we want to empower carers with information and support, so they can feel confident asking for what they need and can challenge things when their rights are not being met.
State of Caring report 2022
The State of Caring Survey is the UK’s most comprehensive research into the lives and experience of carers. The survey was conducted by Carers UK. Over 13,000 current and former carers took part. On 8th November Carers UK published a report on the findings.
As well as finances, the State of Caring 2022 survey covered many other aspects of caring, from the impact of caring on health, to experiences of using support services, and the challenges of juggling work and care.
While Governments across the UK have taken a range of actions to provide carers with help and support, much more must be done. We have set out several recommendations on how carers should be supported, including calling for:
- A funded National Carers Strategy for England
- A review and reform of carers’ benefits
- Investment in social care to support carers with adequate breaks
- Better access to NHS and support services for unpaid carers