WAC CEO Carole Cumino was featured on BBC Hereford and Worcester this morning discussing the “Army of Unpaid Carers” that collectively save the British Government in the region of £139 Billion per year.

Listen to the full interview with Elliott Webb through the link below (starting at approx. 1:08:00).  



This comes after Carers Trust released their ‘Pushed to the Edge’ report stating that “over 90% of adult unpaid carers feel ignored by the government.” In the interview, Ms Cumino said;  


“There is no national plan for carers. There has been a carers strategy in the past, there isn’t one now. So what is the Government’s plan? How are they going to join up all the different government departments and make sure that that help that carers need is coordinated?” 


“Locally, both [Herefordshire and Worcestershire] councils are trying to make sure that they do provide the right services and the right support… but I think we’re all aware that money that has been going to local councils has been squeezed as well.” 


The Carers Trust’s survey results also demonstrated how many unpaid carers are being driven into acute financial hardship because of their caring role, with inadequate financial support from successive governments widely cited by survey respondents in their written responses. 


Financial pressures arising from giving up paid work are further exacerbated for many unpaid carers unable to claim Carer’s Allowance. The survey found that, of those responding to a question on whether they were receiving Carer’s Allowance, more than half (51%) said they were not. 


Ms Cumino commented “If I gave up work to care for my dad, for example, the money I would get from the government for doing that is £67.60 a week, and that is going up to £69 odd from April… It’s not a lot.”  

 The survey also found that: 

  • 91% of unpaid family carers feel ignored by the Government. 
  • Almost nine out of ten (86%) unpaid carers either agree, or agree strongly, that successive governments have ignored the needs of unpaid carers for a long time. 
  • 84% of survey respondents disagreed, or disagreed strongly, with the statement ‘I have confidence in the Government’s ability to improve the lives of unpaid carers'. 
  • 49% of survey respondents said they’d had to use their personal savings because of their caring role. 
  • 51% of survey respondents said they’d had to give up on hobbies or personal interests because of their caring role. 

 If you or someone you know is an unpaid carer, get in touch with Worcestershire Association of Carers to see what support we can offer.  

Call our helpline or use the buttons at the top of the page to self-refer. 

For the full Press Release by Carers Trust follow the link below: