Carers (health and wellbeing needs in South Tyneside)

Key issues

  • Many services in the UK have reached crisis point, with unpaid carers facing the consequences of austerity on local budgets.
  • The two-year delay in publishing the Green Paper on Social Care in England is of concern. The results of the 'State of Caring 2019' survey show clearly why system-wide reform is needed to ensure carers are properly supported and able to have a good quality of life alongside their caring responsibilities.
  • The number of people aged 65 years or over who are caring has grown from 1.4 million to potentially over 2 million. This is a 43% increase from 2011 to 2019. Improving support for carers whether it's practical or financial must be at the heart of how we address our ageing population.
  • Carers' support comes with high personal costs. Many carers are suffering from loneliness and social isolation, need support to help them stay in work, and are facing their own health problems as a result of their caring role.
  • A continual theme throughout Carer Groups in South Tyneside is the need for more respite services to enable breaks from caring.
  • According to the UK Census 2011 around 1 in 9 workers in the UK have caring responsibilities but polling from 2019 suggests that this may be closer to 1 in 7.  This means there could be around 10,000 people in employment with caring responsibilities in South Tyneside.  If the rate of carer per employee continues to rise, South Tyneside will have an estimated 1 in 4 workers who have caring responsibilities by 2031.
  • Young Carers miss on average 48 days of school due to bullying because they care for someone.
  • Engagement levels in support for ages 18 - 25 years are low.
  • Carers from from ethnic minority backgrounds are not well represented in South Tyneside.