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We must give carers a break

February 16, 2021 10:55 AM
By Ed Davey MP, Leader of the Liberal Democrats
Originally published by UK Liberal Democrats
People looking after their loved ones are doing a remarkable and important job in very difficult circumstances. They deserve our support, but are too often forgotten and ignored by people in power.


During this pandemic, millions of people have stepped up heroically to look after elderly, disabled and vulnerable people.

A recent survey by Carers UK found that 81% of carers are spending more time on their caring responsibilities during the pandemic, mainly because the needs of the person they are caring for have increased or because the local care services they rely on have been reduced or closed.

But now most carers are simply exhausted. Most haven't had a single break since the pandemic started.

The brutal combination of lockdowns, shielding requirements and reduced support services have made the pandemic especially tough.

The survey by Carers UK found that 64% of carers have not been able to take any breaks from their caring role during the pandemic. 74% said they feel exhausted and worn out as a result of caring during Covid, and 44% said they are reaching breaking point.

We must do far more to support our wonderful carers.

So Liberal Democrats are calling on the Government to give carers a break by providing immediate emergency funding to councils so they can offer every unpaid carer the support services they need to take a weekly break.

The Liberal Democrats will stand up for carers and lead the way to a more caring society as we emerge from this pandemic.