STOCKPORT CARER VISITS PARLIAMENT FOR CARERS WEEK

June 19, 2012 1:58 PM
Mark alongside Ian Anderson, of Bramhall

Mark alongside Ian Anderson, of Bramhall

A carer from Stockport visited parliament at the start of Carers Week (18 - 24 June) to make a call on politicians to urgently reform support for carers because of the effects of caring on health.

Ian Anderson cares for his wife who was diagnosed with Parkinson's over ten years ago.

Ian was invited to come to talk to MPs as part of a delegation from Parkinson's UK. The charity is a key supporter of Carers Week which took place between 18 - 24 June. MPs came to a "speed networking" event where they heard from different carers about the challenges they face. Ian also met with his MP, Mark Hunter.

During the Week a major survey was launched which found that over 8 out of 10 carers were suffering both physical and mental health problems due to caring, some putting off their own treatment or injuring themselves due to the role.

Commenting, Ian Anderson said:

"When you are a carer it's hard to find time in the day to do anything for yourself, let alone make a trip from Stockport to parliament. But I felt strongly about the opportunity to meet politicians and tell it like it is - especially for all the unsung carers across Stockport and the rest of the UK.

"What galls me most is the unfairness of caring - us carers save the UK economy £119 Billion a year - but services are being cut and many of us get no help - including financial - to pay for a bit of respite from this role. For example, once I got my state pension I lost my Carer's Allowance because the rules don't allow you to receive both.

Letting carers get to breaking point makes no sense - after all it's much more expensive for councils and the NHS to pick up the pieces if carers can't cope anymore."

Commenting, Mark said:

"I have great respect for Ian and for many years he has been great advocate for people with Parkinson's and their families locally. I was delighted he could come to parliament and do what he has been doing for many years locally at a national level. As president of Parkinson's UK Stockport branch and having first hand family experience of the condition, the issues are close to my heart."

"It is true what Ian says - we need to ensure carers get all the help and support they can as the state simply cannot afford to step in and replace them if carers reach breaking point. Part of my role in the coalition government is to ensure the social care system gets reformed and carers get more rights to support."

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