Freedom From Worries Caused By Government

WIth todays big press release regarding the changes to benefits immense concern is being caused to the most vulnerable members of society by the lack of detailed information.

The press release states major changes (some of which may be good!) but gives no details.  This is just like the situation with the Budget referrals to changes in housing benefit – no details.

When such announcements are made the proposed finer details should be made available immediately in order to avoid the worry this causes to many people.  Not releasing the finer details is tantamount to bullying as the most vulnerable members of our society are then terrified of what the future holds for them.

Why is this idea important?

WIth todays big press release regarding the changes to benefits immense concern is being caused to the most vulnerable members of society by the lack of detailed information.

The press release states major changes (some of which may be good!) but gives no details.  This is just like the situation with the Budget referrals to changes in housing benefit – no details.

When such announcements are made the proposed finer details should be made available immediately in order to avoid the worry this causes to many people.  Not releasing the finer details is tantamount to bullying as the most vulnerable members of our society are then terrified of what the future holds for them.

Supporting People Programme

The SP programme when used correctly has shown many wondeful outcoms to clients.

We are are provider of SP for clients with dementia delivering a short term services to empower and enable vulnerable people to stay independent and in their own homes for as long as possible.

Outcomes have included access to much needed services, telecare – to ensure client safety and security and family/unpaid carers peace of mind, liason with professionals as a clients advocate to resoves housing issues,monies concerns etc.

This service ensures vulnerable people who require a lower level of support,  gain immense benefit and improved quality of life, which in turn maintains their health and wellbeing and in many cases means higher level services at higher costs are not required

Key words bounding around PCT and LA's are reablement and preventative services, SP i believe helps support this and provides a value for money service required by people in our communities.

To cut some of the funding would be a disaster let alone losing it all together

Why is this idea important?

The SP programme when used correctly has shown many wondeful outcoms to clients.

We are are provider of SP for clients with dementia delivering a short term services to empower and enable vulnerable people to stay independent and in their own homes for as long as possible.

Outcomes have included access to much needed services, telecare – to ensure client safety and security and family/unpaid carers peace of mind, liason with professionals as a clients advocate to resoves housing issues,monies concerns etc.

This service ensures vulnerable people who require a lower level of support,  gain immense benefit and improved quality of life, which in turn maintains their health and wellbeing and in many cases means higher level services at higher costs are not required

Key words bounding around PCT and LA's are reablement and preventative services, SP i believe helps support this and provides a value for money service required by people in our communities.

To cut some of the funding would be a disaster let alone losing it all together

allow council tenants the right to buy their own home.

The Government should support the right to buy for council tenants. This right is being erroded in scotland and this deprives citizens of their rights.

Why is this idea important?

The Government should support the right to buy for council tenants. This right is being erroded in scotland and this deprives citizens of their rights.

Listen To Carers – Not Carers UK

This would not require a change of law but a change of policy.

Carers Uk has the ear of government and this excludes the voices of real carers. 

This exclusion results in restrictions on the lives of carers and the direct contravention of carers' rights and civil liberties.

Instead of listening to the restrictive agenda of Carers Uk consult directly with real carers – find out what their real problems and needs are and respond to resolve problems and meet needs.

The current situation bars real carers from making their views and needs known – one consultation that reaches ALL carers would resolve the current restrictive practices that exclude real carers and their voices from debate and solutions.

Why is this idea important?

This would not require a change of law but a change of policy.

Carers Uk has the ear of government and this excludes the voices of real carers. 

This exclusion results in restrictions on the lives of carers and the direct contravention of carers' rights and civil liberties.

Instead of listening to the restrictive agenda of Carers Uk consult directly with real carers – find out what their real problems and needs are and respond to resolve problems and meet needs.

The current situation bars real carers from making their views and needs known – one consultation that reaches ALL carers would resolve the current restrictive practices that exclude real carers and their voices from debate and solutions.

Extend Invalid Care Allowance to Pensioners

Currently, when a carer is in receipt of the State Pension, they lose their exising Invalid Care Allowance. This anomaly is most unfair and has existed for many years. Making ICA available to over 60s or 65s would help in the ongoing battle over disability.

Why is this idea important?

Currently, when a carer is in receipt of the State Pension, they lose their exising Invalid Care Allowance. This anomaly is most unfair and has existed for many years. Making ICA available to over 60s or 65s would help in the ongoing battle over disability.

Change Benefit Laws To Give Carers A Fair Deal.

The surrounding benefits restrict the lives of carers and need urgent change.

I suggest:

Carers who are unable to take up paid employment because of their caring role should be paid at a rate that reflects the work they do and the hours they put in.  This would remove carers from poverty and the restrictions from their lives – reflecting their true worth and their contribution to society.

The adjustment of the 35 hour per week rule with various rates of payment according to the amount of time spent caring.

The introduction of a grant system to allow carers who cannot work outside the home to start up businesses where they can work from home.  This needs to include  the ability to continue to claim benefits for the first two years in order to give the business time to reach a profit making level.

Why is this idea important?

The surrounding benefits restrict the lives of carers and need urgent change.

I suggest:

Carers who are unable to take up paid employment because of their caring role should be paid at a rate that reflects the work they do and the hours they put in.  This would remove carers from poverty and the restrictions from their lives – reflecting their true worth and their contribution to society.

The adjustment of the 35 hour per week rule with various rates of payment according to the amount of time spent caring.

The introduction of a grant system to allow carers who cannot work outside the home to start up businesses where they can work from home.  This needs to include  the ability to continue to claim benefits for the first two years in order to give the business time to reach a profit making level.

Help unpaid carers to care

Unpaid carers are generally regarded as a resource at best and as a nuisance at worst by health and social care professionals.   Research shows that they often become ill through stress due to the demands of their caregiving role and the associated obstructive bureaucracy.   Instead of exploiting and subjugating them, my idea is firstly to invest in unpaid carers by paying them appropriately for the work they do and secondly, to 'open up' residential care homes as suggested by Julia Neuberger in her book 'The Moral State we're in'.   If they were pleasant places to work in and visit (as few are) standards of care would improve and expensive quangos such as the Care Quality Commission would gradually become redundant. 

Why is this idea important?

Unpaid carers are generally regarded as a resource at best and as a nuisance at worst by health and social care professionals.   Research shows that they often become ill through stress due to the demands of their caregiving role and the associated obstructive bureaucracy.   Instead of exploiting and subjugating them, my idea is firstly to invest in unpaid carers by paying them appropriately for the work they do and secondly, to 'open up' residential care homes as suggested by Julia Neuberger in her book 'The Moral State we're in'.   If they were pleasant places to work in and visit (as few are) standards of care would improve and expensive quangos such as the Care Quality Commission would gradually become redundant. 

benefit reform of carers allowance.

There is a regulation which I believe should be repealed.

Currently there is no right of appeal in respect to change your pay week-ending day or the change from weekly to fortnightly payments for benefit payments.

This is due to (regulations 20-24) of the Social Security (Claims and Payments) Regulations 1987 and paragraph 5(j) of Schedule 2 to the Social Security and Child Support (Decisions and Appeals) Regulations 1999.

This is not to create even more chaos into the benefit system, but rather to assist carers who have had their income support element of their benefits changed this week without consultation.

Anyone who is a carer ought to be able to stay on weekly payments, even better have both parts of their benefit paid on the same day to assist them.

The above regulation prevents this, it is grossly unfair – giving some carers £5.95 for 8 days to live on. The above regulation prevents an appeal and should, in itself, be repealed.

Thank you

 

 

Why is this idea important?

There is a regulation which I believe should be repealed.

Currently there is no right of appeal in respect to change your pay week-ending day or the change from weekly to fortnightly payments for benefit payments.

This is due to (regulations 20-24) of the Social Security (Claims and Payments) Regulations 1987 and paragraph 5(j) of Schedule 2 to the Social Security and Child Support (Decisions and Appeals) Regulations 1999.

This is not to create even more chaos into the benefit system, but rather to assist carers who have had their income support element of their benefits changed this week without consultation.

Anyone who is a carer ought to be able to stay on weekly payments, even better have both parts of their benefit paid on the same day to assist them.

The above regulation prevents this, it is grossly unfair – giving some carers £5.95 for 8 days to live on. The above regulation prevents an appeal and should, in itself, be repealed.

Thank you

 

 

Recognise Grandparents as Carers and give them the same benefits as foster parents.

I can't understand why Central Governement and County Councils do not recognise grandparents as offical carers. My parents have taken guardianship of my Nieces at great personal expence to themselves – my mum had to give up her job-only to be told that they are not entitled to the same finacial help that a foster parent would have got had my nieces gone into to care. I find this a disgrace.

Why is this idea important?

I can't understand why Central Governement and County Councils do not recognise grandparents as offical carers. My parents have taken guardianship of my Nieces at great personal expence to themselves – my mum had to give up her job-only to be told that they are not entitled to the same finacial help that a foster parent would have got had my nieces gone into to care. I find this a disgrace.

Give Carers the Attendance Allowance when caring 24/7

In order to receive Carers Allowance, we have to be caring for at least 35 hours a week; additionally in order to be granted this allowance of £53.90 per week, the person we care for must be in receipt of Attendance Allowance currently over £70.00 at the higher rate.

May I suggest that Attendance Allowance be automatically transferred to the Carer who by definition has already satisfied the DWP that they are in fact the Primary Carer in the household to top up the Carers Allowance, since Attendance Allowance is specifically to be used for the Care needs of the recipient.

Not only would this mean that the Carer receives recompense for what is generally recognised as an onerous task, one that impacts totally upon the life of the Carer, but also ensures that they can at least use some of the increased income to provide the Carer with some value, and dignity with the option to afford to take some Respite.

The current system of ‘Direct Payments’ which is supposed to allow the Carer & Caree to manage their own care needs themselves, specifically EXCLUDES Carers such as myself, because I gave up my job & own home to live with & look after my Father.

Further confirmed by my Social Worker. Unfortunately, there’s nothing to help a Carer financially when it comes to giving us a Break.

Why is this idea important?

In order to receive Carers Allowance, we have to be caring for at least 35 hours a week; additionally in order to be granted this allowance of £53.90 per week, the person we care for must be in receipt of Attendance Allowance currently over £70.00 at the higher rate.

May I suggest that Attendance Allowance be automatically transferred to the Carer who by definition has already satisfied the DWP that they are in fact the Primary Carer in the household to top up the Carers Allowance, since Attendance Allowance is specifically to be used for the Care needs of the recipient.

Not only would this mean that the Carer receives recompense for what is generally recognised as an onerous task, one that impacts totally upon the life of the Carer, but also ensures that they can at least use some of the increased income to provide the Carer with some value, and dignity with the option to afford to take some Respite.

The current system of ‘Direct Payments’ which is supposed to allow the Carer & Caree to manage their own care needs themselves, specifically EXCLUDES Carers such as myself, because I gave up my job & own home to live with & look after my Father.

Further confirmed by my Social Worker. Unfortunately, there’s nothing to help a Carer financially when it comes to giving us a Break.

Enable Home Businesses

I'll use myself as an example. I care for my quadriplegic partner, who needs constant attendance, so I am completely unable to work outside the home. While I've been at home, alongside learning physiotherapy and advanced form-filling, I have tried to develop useful skills for my circumstances; through volunteering online I have learnt web and software development, video editing and postproduction, graphic design, and documentation skills: all things I can do from home while still doing a good job as a carer. (I want to be clear: I don't think carers are all able or should be forced to work from home, but I would personally like to as I have a cognitive surplus going on here.)

But it's impossible to start a small home business because I cannot immediately replace the support my partner needs, and the bureaucracy is so inflexible. I care for my partner unsupported 22 hours a day, but if I start a business I would immediately have to pay care and equipment costs for the small amount of help I do get. This, combined with the loss of Carer's Allowance, Council Tax and Housing Benefit means I can never realistically earn escape velocity.

While I, as a fit and healthy 27 year old, could easily eat ramen and wear an extra jumper for 18 months to startup, my partner is too ill to undergo further privation. Similarly, we cannot lose this adapted accommodation as there is no accessible alternative. So I can't take the risk because it's not my risk to take.

If Carer's Allowance was made a real payment made on the basis of how much caring work you do, rather than how much other work you don't do, or if the earning restriction was raised to the average national wage instead of £5,200 per year, it could be a really enabling benefit.

If severely disabled people could claim housing costs independently from their partners it would reduce the risk of working. (Even better if severely disabled people could get access to adapted social housing or were permitted to save money for a deposit on an adapted/adaptable property, but obviously that's a pipe dream.)

If people stuck at home due to caring responsibilities were given 18 months to get a home business going before the disabled partner lost entitlements and exemptions (like Council Tax,  Adult Social Care costs and the disabled person's Income Support, though obviously not my own) I could take the risk. This allowance would cost the state NO money.

To summarise:

Pay Carer's Allowance on basis of work done instead of work not done and/or means test it at national average wage.

Encourage home businesses by continuing exemptions for the first 18 months.

Guarantee housing support for people with special housing needs without condemning their entire household to welfare limbo.

Why is this idea important?

I'll use myself as an example. I care for my quadriplegic partner, who needs constant attendance, so I am completely unable to work outside the home. While I've been at home, alongside learning physiotherapy and advanced form-filling, I have tried to develop useful skills for my circumstances; through volunteering online I have learnt web and software development, video editing and postproduction, graphic design, and documentation skills: all things I can do from home while still doing a good job as a carer. (I want to be clear: I don't think carers are all able or should be forced to work from home, but I would personally like to as I have a cognitive surplus going on here.)

But it's impossible to start a small home business because I cannot immediately replace the support my partner needs, and the bureaucracy is so inflexible. I care for my partner unsupported 22 hours a day, but if I start a business I would immediately have to pay care and equipment costs for the small amount of help I do get. This, combined with the loss of Carer's Allowance, Council Tax and Housing Benefit means I can never realistically earn escape velocity.

While I, as a fit and healthy 27 year old, could easily eat ramen and wear an extra jumper for 18 months to startup, my partner is too ill to undergo further privation. Similarly, we cannot lose this adapted accommodation as there is no accessible alternative. So I can't take the risk because it's not my risk to take.

If Carer's Allowance was made a real payment made on the basis of how much caring work you do, rather than how much other work you don't do, or if the earning restriction was raised to the average national wage instead of £5,200 per year, it could be a really enabling benefit.

If severely disabled people could claim housing costs independently from their partners it would reduce the risk of working. (Even better if severely disabled people could get access to adapted social housing or were permitted to save money for a deposit on an adapted/adaptable property, but obviously that's a pipe dream.)

If people stuck at home due to caring responsibilities were given 18 months to get a home business going before the disabled partner lost entitlements and exemptions (like Council Tax,  Adult Social Care costs and the disabled person's Income Support, though obviously not my own) I could take the risk. This allowance would cost the state NO money.

To summarise:

Pay Carer's Allowance on basis of work done instead of work not done and/or means test it at national average wage.

Encourage home businesses by continuing exemptions for the first 18 months.

Guarantee housing support for people with special housing needs without condemning their entire household to welfare limbo.

Disabled People Receive too Many Benefits!

To counter the rise of ever increasing cost of meeting disabled peoples needs a care benefit should be introduced for those supporting disabled people.

This care benefit will give the carer the exact amount of money needed to pay for the essentials which the disabled person needs such as food. housing & mobility costs.

There will be a option for private companies to also accept this benefit if they can provide a suitable service to look after the disabled. This will create a new opportunties within the private sector and create more competitive care at the same time which is good for customers.

The money will come from the existing budget for disabled people by removing incapacity benefit & disability living allowance entirely.

This will also put off claimants who are not genuine so fourth eradicating benefit theives.

This will allow the government to distribute more money to other vunerable groups like pensioners who have worked their whole lifes while also saving money for the deficit at the same time.

Why is this idea important?

To counter the rise of ever increasing cost of meeting disabled peoples needs a care benefit should be introduced for those supporting disabled people.

This care benefit will give the carer the exact amount of money needed to pay for the essentials which the disabled person needs such as food. housing & mobility costs.

There will be a option for private companies to also accept this benefit if they can provide a suitable service to look after the disabled. This will create a new opportunties within the private sector and create more competitive care at the same time which is good for customers.

The money will come from the existing budget for disabled people by removing incapacity benefit & disability living allowance entirely.

This will also put off claimants who are not genuine so fourth eradicating benefit theives.

This will allow the government to distribute more money to other vunerable groups like pensioners who have worked their whole lifes while also saving money for the deficit at the same time.

Carer’s Allowance taxation

The Carer's Allowance is paid to people who voluntarily give up the opportunity to work and so should NOT BE TAXED. At little more than £1 per hour it causes great hardship and it is ridiculous to penalise further those who relieve the State of its caring responsibility in this way.

 

In addition, many carers can work from home while still caring, and should be allowed to earn as much as they can, without being taxed, up to the normal income tax threshold, and should not have to declare income and expenditure.

Why is this idea important?

The Carer's Allowance is paid to people who voluntarily give up the opportunity to work and so should NOT BE TAXED. At little more than £1 per hour it causes great hardship and it is ridiculous to penalise further those who relieve the State of its caring responsibility in this way.

 

In addition, many carers can work from home while still caring, and should be allowed to earn as much as they can, without being taxed, up to the normal income tax threshold, and should not have to declare income and expenditure.

Carers

Allow carers legal rights to be classed as 'specialist advisers' when advising about the needs of the people we care for, particulary longterm carers. We are the people that know how to care and the needs involved. Social services need to be instructed to take full account of the advice given about care requirements. At the moment even when someone has been caring for 20+ years social services show a complete disregaurd for the advice given, always deeming that they know best when they have met a person once or twice.

Why is this idea important?

Allow carers legal rights to be classed as 'specialist advisers' when advising about the needs of the people we care for, particulary longterm carers. We are the people that know how to care and the needs involved. Social services need to be instructed to take full account of the advice given about care requirements. At the moment even when someone has been caring for 20+ years social services show a complete disregaurd for the advice given, always deeming that they know best when they have met a person once or twice.