Welcome to Carersnet
The Website of the Coalition of Carers in Scotland
CarersNet is a partnership project of the Coalition of Carers in Scotland. The Coalition is a network or alliance of over 80 autonomous local carer-led groups, centres and projects. Members of the Coalition meet quarterly to share information and debate issues. The Coalition is lead by an Executive Committee made up of carers and staff from local carer organsiations.
Quick Links & News Items
To navigate our Website simply use the menu list to your left and click on the subject you are interested in. Alternatively you can click on the quick links and news items below.
Government to Bring Forward Legislation for Carers
The Scottish Government intends to bring forward legislation to support carers and young carers with a view to securing parliamentary approval before the end of the parliamentary session
The government is planning to put together a package of measures to improve both assessment and support for carers, which will aim to:
- improve carers' health and wellbeing
- sustain the caring role
- enable carers to have a life alongside caring
- assist carers to remain in or return to work
- enable access to community support networks and
- prevent or delay hospital or residential care admissions.
This is great news and offers a welcome opportunity to secure new rights for carers. The government aims to publish its proposals before the end of the year, after which there will be a 3 month consulation period for you to contribute your views. To download the full Statement of Intent, follow this link
Consultation on the draft Guidance for Carer Advocacy
The Scottish Government, along with key partners, has produced a set of draft practice guidance for carer advocacy. This guidance aims to support good practice in the delivery of advocacy for adult carers. For more information and a copy of the Guidance and details of how to respond, follow this link
Scottish Government Consultation on the closure of the Independent Living Fund
Following the announcement by the UK Government that the Independent Living Fund will be closed from March 2015, the Scottish Government has published a consultation on potential options for allocating funds to individuals who are eligible for support. For more information and to find out how to submit your views, follow this link
The next meeting of the Coalition of Carers in Scotland will be on the 27th of November at The Apex Hotel, Edinburgh. The theme of the meeting is 'Change for the Better'
It will look at:
- How have things changed for carers since 2006, when Care 21 – The Future of Unpaid Care in Scotland was launched?
- What evidence do we have of change and of improving outcomes for carers? and
- What does the future hold? – How will the new carers legislation change things for the better?
For more information, follow this link
Social Care (Self Directed Support) Scotland Act -
Consultation on Draft Statutory Guidance and Regulations
We would like to draw your attention to an important piece of Scottish Government consultation that is currently taking place and will close on the 10th July 2013
This consultation relates to the Social Care (Self-directed Support) (Scotland) Act 2013 and the Statutory Guidance, Regulations and legal duties and powers associated with the Act. These will be key to ensuring the principles that underpin self-directed support are translated into practice across Scotland, and the aspirations of the original Bill are achieved. We believe, therefore, it is important that individuals and organisations set aside some time to carefully consider what is being proposed, and to respond.
As well as the Statutory Guidance, the consultation is also seeking views on draft Regulations which will give new powers to local authorities to enable them to provide self -directed support to carers in their own right. These Regulations set out the circumstances in which carers cannot be charged for receiving this support. This includes the provision of replacement care to give the carer a break, and any support that may be assessed as required to enable the carer and the person they care for to have a break together.
The Minister for Public Health, in addressing Parliament during the final debate on the Bill, stated that he planned to issue regulations that make it clear that ‘all charges for support to carers should be waived in the whole.’ The publication of these draft Regulations allows us to consider how this commitment will be delivered.
The Scottish Government is also consulting on Directions to local authorities about the way that they should approach “the substantial and regular test” on access to the carer’s assessment. The aim of the Directions is to reinforce existing guidance about the interpretation of providing a substantial amount of care on a regular basis and to encourage local authorities to adopt a broadly consistent approach to the carrying out of the carer’s assessment. This is important because in order to have the right to be assessed the carer must provide, or intend to provide, a substantial amount of care on a regular basis, and assessments are the main route to determining the level of support that might be available to a carer.
Links to consultation documents:
- The Draft Carers (Waiving of Charges for Support) (Scotland) Regulations that will accompany the Social Care(Self-directed Support) (Scotland) Act 2013
- The Draft Directions (The Carer’s Assessment (Scotland) Directions 2014) made by Scottish Ministers under section 5(1A) of the Social Work (Scotland) Act 1968 that will accompany the Social Care (Self-directed Support) (Scotland) Act 2013
- Draft regulations to accompany the Social Care (Self-directed Support) (Scotland) Act 2013
- Draft statutory guidance to accompany the Social Care (Self-directed Support) (Scotland) Act 2013
Carer Organisations Welcome New Regulations to Waive Charges for Support to Carers
We welcome the announcement made by Michael Matheson MSP at the debate on the Social Care (Self Directed) Support Bill on the 28th of November 2012 to develop new regulations which will waive charges to carers accessing support.
Michael Matheson MSP said:
"I plan to use the powers provided as a result of section 16 of the Bill to issue regulations that will make clear that all charges for support to carers should be waived in whole,"
"So, to be abundantly clear, carers will not be charged for the support they receive under Section 2 of the Bill."
We further welcome provisions to issue directions to local authorities about the ways in which they should approach the substantial and regular test on access to carers’ assessments to promote greater consistency on the approach that is taken across the country on the provision of carers’ assessments.
Some carers do not meet the threshold for a carer’s assessment and should be supported in a preventative basis to maintain their health and wellbeing. The Minister also announced that the Government will issue statutory guidance to local authorities about the benefits of intervening early to support carers and to encourage local authorities to provide this support.
The Government also agreed that it will examine the issue of a greater role for carers in the assessment of the cared-for person and in ensuring that local authorities collaborate with the carer through the work to develop a carers rights charter. Depending on the results of this work, the Government will then decide whether further action is needed.
There was some disappointment as the power to support carers in the Bill will not be replaced with a duty. It was agreed in the Parliament that this is a complex issue, with the risk that a duty may lead to formal eligibility criteria and in some cases carer support being targeted only at those in critical levels of need. The national carer organisations recognise this but will continue to press the case that providing support for carers as a matter of course prevents crisis, supports carers own health and, in the long run, saves the state significant amounts of money.
The national carer organisations will work with carers, the Scottish Government and others to ensure that all of these provisions best meet the needs of carers in Scotland.
Carers have been vital in achieving these improvements... their lobbying and campaigning throughout the passage of the Bill, including sharing their experiences with MSPs, has been instrumental in securing these important measures which we hope will improve their lives. They should be rightly proud.
To find out more about the Minister's announcement and other developments to the Bill you can download our briefing paper, co-produced by The Coalition of Carers in Scotland, Carers Scotland and The Carers Trust by clicking the link below:
Or to read the parliament's report on the debate, click the link below
Is there a Crisis in Adult Social Care?
The Coalition has been asked to contribute a response to a series of discussion papers on Critical Issues in Contemporary Social Work. We examine the question 'Is there a crisis in adult social care?'
How do carers themselves view the current care system and the transformational changes planned for it? And if it is in crisis how is it affecting them? To find out more read our response, by following the link below:
Integration of Adult Health and Social Care
The Scottish Government has introduced proposals for the NHS and Local Authorities to change the way they currently operate and work more closely together by integrating their services and resources.
The consultation ended in September and a Bill will be introduced early next year.
The Coalition held a series of listening events with its members across Scotland and submitted carers' messages to the consultation. From these we produced a set of recommendations aimed at strengthening the Bill from a carer's perspective.
As the Bill is introduced we will continue to ensure carers are able to contribute to its development and have their views heard.
Scotland's Carers Manifesto 2011 to 2015
With the new Scottish Government now sitting in parliament, it is time to reflect on the success of Scotland's Carers Manifesto Campaign. Carers and campaigners have been working hard up and down the country over the last year to promote the manifesto and secure commitments for carers in each of the political parties manifestos. To find out more, including what each of the parties said about carers, follow the link below
Click here for further information.'Caring Together' Scotland's Carers Strategy 2010 to 2015.
On the 26th of July 2010 the Scottish Government in partnership with the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA) launched 'Caring Together' a five year strategy outlining a shared vision for the future of carer recognition and support in Scotland. Click here for further information or a copy of the Strategy or briefing paper.
- Information on the Coalition of Carers in Scotland
- How many carers are there in Scotland?
- Details of our next meeting
- Policy Updates, including news of the launch of Scotland's new Carers Strategy
- Getting involved in campaigning for better recognition and rights for carers
- Our Contact Details