Barbara, Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate for Worsley and Andy Burnham, MP for Leigh met today with Wigan and Leigh Carers, to hear first hand about their issues.
The meeting was set up jointly by Wigan and Leigh Crossroads and Carers UK, Wigan and Leigh branch. Around 60 carers attended and the issues discussed included Carers’ Benefits and Allowances; Respite Care; Care Charging Policies; Children’s Services and services for Young Carers.
"I see carers as a vital part of our community – many people who are ill or who have a disability could not manage without the care they receive from unpaid family carers. Also, carers are vital partners of the NHS and Social Care services in the borough.
"Carers in the borough of Wigan want to see improvements in the support and help available to them. It is vital for carers to have a direct link with their local Parliamentary representatives and candidates so they can discuss their needs. I think most people felt the meeting worked well.
"Andy Burnham and I agreed that we would set up regular meetings in future to discuss the agenda which carers brought to the meeting today. For our part we will take the issues raised by carers forward and work to get as much progress as we can".
Barbara Keeley meetis with Wigan and Leigh Carers
One in 10 of the UK population are unpaid carers and one fifth of those carers care for more than 50 hours per week. Carers’ contribution and their needs were first recognised nationally through the Government’s National Strategy "Caring for Carers" in 1999. The Carers and Disabled Children Act 2000 gave carers the right to an assessment of their own needs for the first time. The Act also enabled local authorities to provide services to carers in their own right.