Call for money to be allocated to carers

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Lisburn Councillor Robbie Butler has called on the Stormont Executive to “think smart when it comes to allocating much-needed cash to the Province’s carers”.

Councillor Butler issued his challenge to the Executive to coincide with Carers Week, which runs until June 14.

Mr Butler stressed that figures from carers’ support organisations stated there are 214,000 people in Northern Ireland supporting a loved one who is older, disabled or seriously ill.

“That means one in eight of our constituents are caring, unpaid, for family and friends and they need the support, not just of the community and the health service, but particularly of the Stormont Executive,” said Mr Butler.

“Carers make a remarkable contribution to our society, holding families together and enabling loved ones to get the most out of life - indeed their care saves the local economy £4.4 billion a year.

“Yet, many carers tell us that they are struggling to cope, and that that the current system simply does not provide the financial, emotional or physical support they need.

“With many carers suffering ill-health, poverty and isolation, carers need the Stormont Executive to speak up on their behalf to ensure they receive the support they deserve.”

Carers Week is an annual campaign to raise awareness of caring, highlight the challenges carers face and recognise the contribution they make to families and communities across Northern Ireland.

This year the focus is on creating carer-friendly communities. Check out www.carersweek.org and see what’s happening near you or to make a pledge online