South Scotland MSP, Claudia Beamish, has signed up to “Carer’s Labour Network” which was launched by the Scottish Labour Party alongside Carers Champion, Claire Lally.
The network will work to bring forward practical initiatives to address issues facing carers, and will build towards launching a Scottish Labour Carers Manifesto, written by carers, for the 2016 Scottish Parliament elections.
Launching the network, Labour has pledged to ensure accountable, transparent and responsive support and services for carers. This will be achieved through giving the Care Inspectorate responsibility over inspecting carer’s services and requiring local authorities to do annual reports on carer’s support and services.
The Network also commits to ensuring young carers get the support they need through fully committing to the Scottish Youth Parliament’s Care, Fair, Share campaign.
Claudia Beamish, herself a former young carer, is urging carers to sign up to the Network and make their voice heard ahead of the next Scottish Parliament Election.
Claudia Beamish MSP said: “Across Scotland unpaid carers play a vital role providing essential care and support to people whose lives are seriously affected by illness or disability.
“People become carers out of compassion and responsibility for the people they care for, giving little thought as to how it will affect them financially or in terms of their health.
“Scottish Labour has long been committed towards ensuring the best possible support is available to carers and I’m proud that the Carer’s Labour Network will continue this work. We need to listen to the needs of carers and find out first-hand the problems that they face.
“One of the main challenges facing carers is access to information on the support and services that are available. Giving the Care Inspectorate responsibility over carers service will help ensure greater accountability and transparency across the board.
“In my time as an MSP I’ve taken a particular interest in young carers and the specific challenges they face. I spoke at the launch of the Youth Parliament’s Care, Fair, Share campaign and am keen to encourage young carers to share their experiences. I have also attended the Young Carers’ Festival and am clear that a real break for all carers on a regular basis is essential to their well-being.
“By listening to carers we will be better able to hold the Scottish Government to account and deliver the step change needed in support for carers.
Scottish Labour’s Carer’s Champion, Claire Lally said: “I’m delighted to announce Scottish Labour pledges for carers and pleased that my role as Carer’s Champion has resulted in concrete promises that will improve the lives of carers across the country.
“I’m especially excited to play a role in developing a Scottish Labour Carers Manifesto for the 2016 election. By having a manifesto written by fellow carers we can address the problems we face in our everyday life.
“I look forward to working with carers from across Scotland to ensure that Labour’s Carers Manifesto will deliver change to the problems faced by carers like myself.”