Barbara today welcomed Gordon Brown’s renewed commitment to carers, as mentioned today during the launch of his leadership campaign.
“I was delighted to hear Gordon highlight the needs of carers and reaffirm the Government’s commitment to carer’s issues. He said that Britain’s 6 million carers do not want the Government to back away from them, they want to be identified and they want to be supported. This is the message I hear all the time from my constituents who care for their relatives; they want recognition and I believe that more should be done to help them. The fact that Gordon mentioned carers in his speech today is a strong message that they will be put at the top of the Government’s agenda”.
Barbara’s recent Private Member’s Bill, the Carers (Identification and Support) Bill calls for just this recognition and support for carers. The Bill, which has support from all political parties, has two main strands. It calls firstly for GPs to identify patients who are carers and provide them with information about local support available to them. Secondly, it calls for schools to help identify young carers and put policies in place so that they too can access support. Barbara is currently working with local and national carers’ groups to promote the Bill.
She is also the Parliamentary Champion for Carers Week which is taking place this year from 11th to 17th June and aims to celebrate progress on carers’ issues and highlight carers’ concerns. As Champion, Barbara is playing a key role in raising the profile of carers within Parliament.
“I know that Gordon Brown has a strong interest in carers’ issues. He is hosting the Carers’ Week eception in Parliament this year to show his support. I hope that the thousands of carers across Worsley will be as heartened by today’s show of support for them as I was”.