Care Bill - Parent Carers Rights are being eroded! ACTION required now!
There is an URGENT ISSUE with the current Social Care Law Reform and Parent Carers: your rights as carers of disabled children are being eroded, and action is required immediately. Described below is the problem and actions required - please share this with anyone you can think of and get them to sign this petition. LAST CHANCE to LOBBY for change - we MUST ACT early in OCT 2013. 1) THE PROBLEM is described below:- We have been so busy looking at the Children and Families Bill (DfE), we may have taken our eye off the new Care Bill (DoH) going through parliament. A DoH official explained at a meeting in Bristol on the 3rd October that the new Care Bill explicitly will not cover parent carers, as its focus is on "cared for adults" (Adult Health & Social Care). Thus we will be omitted from the new legislation covering carers' rights to assessments and how those needs should be met. The DoH believe our needs should be addressed by DfE under the new Children & Families Bill ! The original draft Care Bill also did not include young carers, however the Carers Trust has lobbied long and hard for them. As a result DfE has amended the Children & Families Bill to cover young carers' needs for an assessment, and the Care Bill now recognises the need to provide sufficient support to families with young carers and sibling carers so that the burden on them is not too great. So now:- •the only people not referred to in the Care Bill are parent carers! •DfE has resisted "opening up" the Children and Families Bill to more explicitly cover parent carer assessments and how their needs will be met - hoping we will be covered by the old system of undertaking "holistic family assessments" when doing child-in-need reviews (this hasn't worked in the past and now represent reduced rights to support than can be expected by young carers and adult carers) •a further anomaly arises because the C&F Bill covers SEND children 0-25 years, meaning that parent carers’ transition from caring for a child to caring for an adult (and getting the right to an assessment under the Care Bill) whilst under this C&F Bill will not happen until their child is 25! •both Bills have to be implemented by the same local authorities - so it makes sense if they're aligned. There is a great deal of concern about parent carers' future right to an assessment. The DoH official stated that if DfE will not address this in the C&FB, the old Carer's legislation will be kept on statute (for the time being) purely so that parent carers still have a right to an assessment somehow. Do we want to be marginalised and covered by a rump piece of legislation? Particularly when landmark legislation is being drawn that will secure rights for other kinship caring groups and the issue is unlikely to be revisited for many years to come? 2) ACTION REQUIRED:- For DfE or DoH to budge, they need to hear vociferous lobbying about this issue NOW. PLEASE SIGN THIS PETITION, THEN SHARE IT AND ENCOURAGE YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY TO SIGN IT TOO. THE LARGER THE VOICE THE GREATER THE WEIGHT OF OPINION, SO WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR... MANY THANKS To be clear, October is our last chance to lobby for rights that are being extended to other carers, that we are being excluded from. We must prioritise this issue and act now.