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Are you a Carer? Have your say on recognition for Carers

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It’s National Carers Week – a time to recognise, celebrate and raise awareness for the 2.65 million Australians who provide care and support to a family member or friend.

Often Carers are unnoticed and at times it can be a thankless role. The saying “you can’t pour from an empty cup” epitomises the idea that Carers need support from government and the community to continue providing care for their loved one.

Coinciding with the celebratory week, public consultation is underway with Carers being asked to have their say as to how the Malinauskas Government can take steps to better recognise and support them.

Led by the Department of Human Services (DHS), the review will assess if the SA Carers Recognition Act 2005 is fulfilling it’s namesake and supporting Carers in their roles.

Across the state, more than 245,000 South Australians provide unpaid care and support services and  around 30,000 of our state’s Carers are under 25 years old. Young Carers experience unique challenges and their voices need to be loud through this process to ensure that their needs are met while they undertake their crucial and often challenging role.

Carers can be anyone and one day it could be you. One in ten of us are currently unpaid Carers. They can be partners, parents, children, friends, neighbours or colleagues who provide assistance ranging from personal care, lifting, mobility, administering medication, banking, shopping or housework. And that is just the tip of the iceberg. That doesn’t take into consideration the care and support for emotional and social needs of the person they are caring for. The person receiving care may be living with a disability, mental health condition, a chronic or terminal illness, issues with alcohol or other drugs, or are frail and ageing.

Nat Cook emphasises that the review is to ensure people who take care of others in our community get the recognition they deserve. The role of a Carer is in equal parts both rewarding and demanding and is interwoven in the health, disability, mental health and aged care sectors. She add that Carers need to have their voices heard during the consultation period and to be reminded of how important they are to our community.

Following the consultation, responses will be used to devise recommendations to change the Act. DHS will then consider the recommendations and take appropriate action.

With unpaid Carers being such an integral part of our society, it’s important that they are heard, and encouraged to speak out about their needs and the supports that will help them continue in their roles, caring for the people they love.

Carers SA CEO David Militz knows only too well the invaluable social and economic contribution that Carers make to society.

For more information and to have your say, click here and submit by 15 December 2023.

Submissions can also be emailed to [email protected]

If you help care for someone, support is available for you too visit by clicking here. 

 

 

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