This week is Carers Week, where we reflect on the priceless contribution that Scotland’s 788,000 carers make to our society. In government we’re working to ensure that their contribution is duly valued and properly supported.
Here are just five ways that the SNP Scottish Government is supporting carers.
1️⃣ From this summer, Carer’s Allowance will be increased by more than £500 per year, with payments backdated to April 2018. And, by the end of this Parliament, we’ll increase Carer’s Allowance further for those who look after more than one disabled child.
2️⃣ In 2019 a Young Carers Grant – worth £300 per year – will be introduced, part of a package of support that will be delivered over the course of this Scottish Parliament term. The package will include adding additional entitlements and rewards to the Young Scot National Entitlement Card for 11 to 18 year old carers.
3️⃣ The new Carers Act came into effect in April enshrining the rights of carers in law for the first time and placing a duty on local councils to provide support to carers. Over the next five years we’ll build on this and will consider a national or regional approach to supporting carers and cared-for people, including the availability of short breaks for carers and how they can be guaranteed.
4️⃣ The SNP Government has invested around £135 million in programmes to support carers – which is more than ever before. This includes funding voluntary-run short breaks and projects like the Young Carers Festival.
5️⃣ We are encouraging employers to better support carers in their workforce through the Carer Positive scheme. In 2014 the SNP government introduced the scheme, which is run by Carers Scotland and has now signed up 90 employers covering 300,000 staff.