Many family carers are worse off after Budget 2021 as the budget fails to deliver on Programme for Government promise of 'support and recognition' for family carers.

That’s according to Catherine Cox, Head of Communications and Carer Engagement with Family Carers Ireland (FCI) and she joins me now on the line

A recent ‘State of Caring’ survey* conducted by FCI found that 70% of family carers find it hard to make ends meet and 57% have experienced, or are likely to experience, debt as a result of caring.

Sp[eaking to Midwest News today Catherine said they welcome the €150 increase in the Carer’s Support Grant (currently €1,700 and paid to approx. 115,000 people), the measure won’t take effect until June 2021, this at a time when many family carers are already struggling financially.

She explained that the majority of Ireland’s 355,000 family carers do not receive this payment, and for those who do, the increase may be offset by additional home heating and motoring costs brought about by the hike in carbon tax. Although the Fuel Allowance is being increased by €3.50 per week, Carer’s Allowance is not a qualifying payment meaning few family carers will qualify for this payment.

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