Each year, Carers UK carries out a survey of carers to understand the state of caring in the UK, and this is the largest State of Caring survey carried out by Carers UK to date. Over 8,500 carers and former carers shared their experiences.
This report analysed the survey responses of 8,119 people currently providing care in the UK. It highlights the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on unpaid carers' lives because of the increased amount of care they are having to provide, and the knock-on affect this has on other areas of life. Carers UK estimates that an additional 4.5 million people became unpaid carers in March 2020 due to the pandemic.
The report makes a number of recommendations to the Government relating to:
- carers and their finances, including increasing the carers allowance and changing eligibility for other benefits.
- support and services, including increasing baseline funding for social care and providing support for carers at key points in their caring journey.
- health and wellbeing, highlighting that this is a top priority for carers, and that caring has been identified as a social determinant of health.
- carers and physical activity.
- carers' assessments, stating that they should be more carer-centred.
- digital, data and technology.
- juggling work and care, including fulfilling its pledge to introduce Carer's Leave as soon as possible.
- equality, recognition and combatting loneliness and isolation, through systematic awareness-raising and by making caring the 10th protected characteristic.