Lib Dems call for Carer’s Allowance to be increased by £1,000 a year due to Covid crisis

Carer’s allowance should be raised by £1,000 a year due to the coronavirus outbreak, Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey has said.

The former Cabinet minister said such a move would be a big boost to the UK’s millions of people caring for others during the Covid-19 crisis.

Sir Ed has written to Prime Minister Boris Johnson calling for a new attitude towards carers.

The Lib Dem leader (pictured) said: “Unpaid carers face big challenges every single day; challenges that have been made even harder by coronavirus.

“Many carers are facing extreme financial hardship. They have been struggling for months, often relying on food banks to feed themselves and the people they care for.

“So, Liberal Democrats are calling on the Government to support carers by raising carer’s allowance by £1,000 a year, now.

“Our wonderful carers deserve our support, but they are too often forgotten or ignored. Liberal Democrats will stand up for carers and lead the way to a more caring society.”

The Lib Dem proposal would increase the carer’s allowance from £67.25 a week to £87.25, which they say would be in line with the £20-a-week uplift in Universal Credit announced at the start of the pandemic.

As well as the 917,751 unpaid people currently receiving carer’s allowance, according to Government figures, the Lib Dems have called for 393,656 people who are entitled to carer’s allowance but do not receive it due to overlapping benefits to receive the extra £20 a week as well.

Sir Ed said there were some nine million carers across the UK that he wanted to be “the voice for”.

The Lib Dem move comes after the Carers Trust said two-thirds of unpaid carers have shouldered increased responsibilities during the last six months.

Just one in eight unpaid carers say they have been getting enough support from the social care system, with many exhausted, lonely and worried about their finances, the research has suggested.

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