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Responding to an NHS Digital survey published today on carers experiencing financial difficulties and social isolation, Cllr Izzi Seccombe, Chairman of the Local Government Association’s Community Wellbeing Board, said:
“Unpaid carers play an invaluable role in looking after those with care and support needs, and are estimated to save the economy £132 billion a year. Without the incredible work of carers, social care and the NHS would collapse.
“The findings of this report and the link between financial problems caused by caring, and social isolation, highlight the need for government to set out how it will address the needs of carers in its long-awaited Carers Strategy.
“Supporting carers is fundamentally important to local government, and we fully backed the important changes brought in by the Care Act to improve the lives of carers, in particular the move to ensure that carers are recognised in law in the same way as those they care for.
“The whole sector needs to work together to identify carers, support carers in employment, and ensure they are able to maintain their own health and wellbeing, while raising awareness amongst the wider community of the vital work they do.
“However, the continuing underfunding of adult social care has limited councils’ ability to provide support to people with care needs and their carers.
“It is absolutely critical that the Government brings forward its consultation for social care announced in the Queen’s Speech, and that it works with local government leaders in delivering a long-term sustainable funding solution for social care.”