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Carer Meets Prime Minister to Discuss New Government Carer’ Strategy

Posted Jul 30 2008 4:12pm

Vice- chairwoman of the Exeter branch of Carers UK and a trustee of the organisation, Rosemary Whitehurst, met the Prime Minister when he unveiled his plan for carers.

The strategy covers training for GPs, health and social care professionals to help them understand carers’ needs better, pilots for annual health checks for carers and an awareness campaign among employers to ensure they understood carers’ rights to request flexible working.

Ms Whitehurst said: ‘There is much here that has the potential to bring about real changes for the better in carers’ lives, but what is missing?’

‘Carers will be very disappointed there is no announcement of changes to the Carers’ Allowance, especially since carers have repeatedly told the Government that this was their number one priority.’

‘It is Carers UK’s belief that carers are still discriminated against in employment and other aspects of daily living and this is something, along with carers’ benefits, that they will continue to campaign on.’

The strategy plans to spend an extra £150m over two years on carers’ breaks. The county portion will be given to Devon Primary Care Trust.

Ms Whitehurst said it had been an experience to visit 10 Downing St. ‘We had to go through stringent security checks.’

‘Gordon Brown gave a warm and appreciative speech about carers and the work they do and invited us to have a look round the house including the cabinet room.’

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