Tagged: dementia

Tory Cuts Could Push Tens Of Thousands Of Home Carers Onto the Dole

Tens of thousands of home carers who look after vulnerable elderly relatives could be pushed into unemployment, warns the Alzheimer’s Society.

Government cuts are leaving local authority social care budgets “at breaking point”, while struggling home carers are left juggling work and caring duties.

Within ten years, up to one million Alzheimers patients will be dependent upon the care they receive from relatives. This is estimated to save the economy around £11.6bn each year, which is greater than the £8.8bn spent on the NHS.

Head of policy at the Alzheimer’s Society, George McNamara, said:

 “Further government cuts to social care could lead to tens of thousands of working people forced to give up their jobs to look after elderly relatives over the next five years.”

“Workers can’t fit caring responsibilities into a lunch break.

“Looking after an elderly parent with dementia takes huge amounts of time, energy and emotional stress. Many carers will have no choice but to give up work unless they get better public services.”

Whilst the government has recognised how childcare can help to keep people in work, providing quality assistance to home carers has not been awarded the same level of importance or significance.

Mr McNamara said:

“The Government has recognised the need to improve parents’ access to childcare to maintain economic recovery. But sidelining social care for a rapidly growing population of vulnerable older people also poses serious risks to the economy.

“Local authority budgets are at breaking point, economic growth is slowing and a massive wave of cuts in public service is imminent.

“We want the Government to end the crisis in social care and provide a vital lifeline for working families caring for elderly relatives.”

Source – Welfare Weekly, 17 May 2015

http://www.welfareweekly.com/tory-cuts-could-push-tens-of-thousands-of-home-carers-onto-the-dole-warns-charity/

Bedroom Tax Victim Forced To Live In A Tent Loses All His Toes To Frostbite

A 32 year-old homeless victim of the hated Bedroom tax had to have all his toes amputated after being forced to spend winter living in a tent, it has been reported today.

Mitchell Keenan, from Skelmsdale in West Lancashire, was rushed to hospital by family members after being discovered with severe frostbite.

Mr Mitchell and his 62 year-old father Keith were evicted from their four-bedroom home after falling behind on rent repayments, due to being hit by the government’s bedroom tax.

Keith has since been diagnosed with a range of serious health problems including scabies, dementia and malnutrition.

His sister Dawn Doyle, 54, tried to find emergency accommodation for the two men “but nowhere would take them”, she said.

Dawn told the Liverpool Echo:

“It’s absolutely outrageous what has happened to my brother and nephew.

“They lived in their home for thirty years and got into difficulty last year.

“They both have neurological conditions and disabilities and kept missing job interviews, so the problem got worse and worse.

Unable to find suitable accommodation, Dawn was eventually forced to buy her brother and nephew a tent.

Dawn says she was unable to house her relatives due to disabilities and being a single parent, but added that she had provided the men with food parcels from a local food bank.

“I felt awful that I couldn’t take them in, but I’m a single parent, with my own disabilities and I just knew I couldn’t cope.

“I tried my best for them and contacted so many different organisations, but just kept getting turned away.

“Social Services said they couldn’t come and assess them because they were in a tent – it was just farcical.

“When we saw Mitchell’s toes we were horrified, that this can happen to people in the 21st century is disgusting.”

“In July they lost their home and I tried everywhere to get them accommodation but nowhere would take them.

“The bedroom tax is an awful thing, it’s affecting people’s lives all over the country and needs to be repealed.”

West Lancashire Borough Council has now provided Mitchell Keenan with temporary accommodation, while his father Keith has been given supported housing.

A Department for Work and Pensions spokesperson said the men “continue to be supported through benefits and by jobcentre staff”.

They added: “We have given their local council hundreds of thousands of pounds to support vulnerable people through our housing benefit reforms”.

Source – Welfare Weekly, 27 Apr 2015

http://www.welfareweekly.com/bedroom-tax-victim-forced-to-live-in-a-tent-loses-all-his-toes-to-fostbite/