I am today publishing a ‘Carers Action Plan 2018-2020 – Supporting carers today’ in the week leading up to Carers Week (11-17 June).
The cross-government Carers Action Plan is an essential step towards realising the Government’s commitment to value, recognise and support carers to provide care in a way that supports their own health and wellbeing, employment and other life chances.
The plan sets out a two-year programme of targeted work to support unpaid carers. It puts a focus on practical actions to support carers and gives visibility to the work already underway or planned within government.
In 2016, the Government ran a call for evidence to seek the views and experiences of unpaid carers. A summary of the 6,800 responses received will be published alongside the plan. Their contributions have informed its development and content, helping us to focus actions around the following five themes:
- Services and systems that work for carers
- Employment and financial wellbeing
- Supporting young carers
- Recognising and supporting carers in the wider community and society
- Building evidence and research to improve outcomes for carers
In this way, we will seek to build accessible carer friendly communities and public services, promote innovative local projects and support carers to stay in work.
The government recognises there is more to do and that is why the needs of carers will be central to the forthcoming Green Paper on care and support, as set out in the Secretary of Health’s speech in March.
The plan has been developed in close collaboration with Ministers and officials in other government departments including the Government Equalities Office, Department for Education, Department for Work and Pensions, Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport.
The Government wants to ensure that caring is a choice or responsibility that is always recognised and valued. The publication of this Carers Action Plan today is an important part of that commitment.
The Carers Action Plan 2018-2020 [for England] – Supporting Carers Today is attached to this statement and is available on Gov.uk.
This statement has also been made in the House of Lords