Selfless devotion to care must be matched with proper pay says Hywel Williams MP.
Plaid Cymru Member of Parliament for Arfon Hywel Williams has accused the UK government of neglecting the selfless contribution of carers during the Coronavirus pandemic by rejecting calls for an increase in the Carer’s Allowance.
The Plaid Cymru MP wrote to the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions urging the government to increase the Carer’s Allowance to reflect the additional support that carers are providing and the financial hardship many face as a result of a loss of income during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The current rate of Carer’s Allowance is £67.25 a week, despite many carers providing over thirty-five hours of care a week, with many sacrificing their own ability to work and pursue careers.
Hywel Williams MP said,
'Carers need the recognition and support that they deserve. Many carers provide care twenty-four-seven, and yet the current Carers Allowance is only £67.25 a week for someone providing at least thirty-five hours a week of one to one care.
'I know from my own constituents' experience and having spoken to local carers' organisations in Gwynedd that there are strong feelings about the lack of recognition for carers and the insufficiency of the Carers' Allowance.
'Yet the Tory government doesn't appear to have any plans to increase the Allowance, not even as a temporary measure to alleviate some of the financial hardship faced by carers during this unprecedented Covid-19 pandemic.'
'This was an opportunity for the UK government to do the right thing by the millions of carers selflessly giving up their time and putting careers on hold to care for loved ones.'
'Carer’s Allowance is the lowest benefit of its kind and many unpaid carers who rely on this support face a never-ending struggle to make ends meet.'
'It is about time the UK Government made it fairer for carers and permanently increased the allowance to recognise their enormous contribution to both society and the wider economy.'