Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Paid Family Care Needs Urgent Focus

An Alliance of almost 50 national not for profits supporting New Zealand’s 420,000+ family carers of elderly, ill, and disabled loved ones have encouraged the Government to act on calls for a fairer payment system for carers.

Two thirds of carers are women of working age who often leave paid employment to provide intensive 24/7 care for a vulnerable person.

Long-term caring impacts a carer’s ability to save for retirement, contribute to KiwiSaver, and fully participate in paid work, and is a growing concern with more support provided by families in an ageing society, says Carers Alliance Co-Chair Janine Stewart.

She says the Alliance has met with Ministers to emphasise the urgency of dealing fairly with carers who are doing their best to cope with work demands, high living costs, and caring.

“More than a third of New Zealand’s carers live in Auckland where the economic realities of housing, commuting, and everyday costs make it difficult to give up work to care. We were pleased to hear that the Government is taking seriously the need for fair policies that recognise the importance and value of family caregiving.”

The Carers Alliance is helping to ensure a voice for carers in the Government’s third five-year Carers’ Strategy Action Plan, which covers the period from 2019 to 2024. It is important that paid family care be addressed in the new Action Plan, along with workable supports in areas like respite, says Stewart.

High numbers of women providing family care make it a crucial women’s issue, says Carers NZ CEO Laurie Hilsgen. Carers NZ has devoted its annual awareness campaign (https://she-cares.org) to the economic realities of women in caregiving roles, joining the Alliance in the call for better fairer paid family care policies for all ages.

An Infometrics analysis of the last Census found that family carers are less able than other New Zealanders to participate in paid work, or to work in better paying jobs that utilise their experience and qualifications. Family carers earn on average 10% less than non-caring New Zealanders and are more likely than the rest of society to work part-time. Infometrics found that the conservative annual value of their unpaid work is at least $10 billion.

The Carers Alliance and Carers NZ say it’s important for carers to see tangible progress over the payment issue after many years of human rights and court action. Most recently 76 year old Auckland carer Diane Moody took her disabled son Shane to court for failing to be a good employer. The case highlights a flaw in the current Funded Family Care policy which requires disabled people with high support needs to act as the employers of their family carers, who are often parents.

Access criteria for FFC are so tight that only a few hundred disabled people who are highly vulnerable qualify, with no option but to employ their family carers, says Stewart.

“There are a range of flaws in the current paid family care policy and we are pleased the Government is considering ways to address the problems. It can’t come too soon, because carers have had to fight so hard for progress, and deserve to be treated better.”


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Joseph Cederwall: Building a Community Newsroom

The “Scoop 3.0” Transition Plan
There is good reason to believe that a new path and a better future is possible for Scoop in 2019 as a pioneering independent Media company. A combination of new technology, ideas, institutions and business models and a renewed energy and commitment by the Scoop team, means Scoop aims to be at the forefront of the development of this renaissance that we term ‘News 3.0’.

By opening up Scoop’s structure to community ownership and exploring decentralised technology through the blockchain we can ensure the public has a stake in this enterprise and a say in its development. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Jami-Lee Ross (And The New Hobbit Law)

Clearly, Jami-Lee Ross is not waging a normal form of political warfare, with agreed rules of combat and rational cost/benefit calculations.

This is politics-as-terrorism where everything is being sacrificed by the man in the bomb vest in order to remove Simon Bridges as the leader of the National Party. More>>

Text Messages Released: National On $100,000 Donation(s)
The Botany Electorate of the National Party received 8 donations, and Mr Ross declared 8 donations to us. More>>


Film Industry Working Group:

Three Killed: DOC Supporting Family, Colleagues After Helicopter Crash

The Department of Conservation (DOC) is rallying around family and colleagues of the staff who died in a helicopter crash this morning in Wanaka... The helicopter, with two DOC staff on board, was on its way to undertake tahr control in the Haast area when it crashed. More>>


Political Donations: Greens Call For Tighter Anonymity Rules And Public Funding

“It is clear that those vested interests have a tangible influence on the decision making of political parties. This is a threat to democracy and should change.” More>>


Education Amendment Bill Passes: Urgency Sought For Partnership School Treaty Claim

The claim takes issue with the acts and omissions of the Crown in respect of the closure of Partnership Schools | Kura Hourua. More>>


Salvation Army Paper: Call For Public Housing Investment

To meet these future demands the report suggests the government needs to look beyond the private rental market and begin to invest heavily into home-ownership programmes and more public and social housing. More>>


Cull: Himalayan Tahr Control Operation Proceeding

“The target of controlling 10,000 Himalayan tahr over the next eight months remains. The revised plan provides for a staged control operation with increased reporting to the Tahr Liaison Group...” More>>


Health: Petitions To Fund Breast Cancer Drugs

Women marching to Parliament today, to present two petitions calling for Government funding of vital medicines, have 100% support from a coalition representing than 30 breast cancer organisations. More>>


Animal Welfare Advisory Committee: Report On Rodeo Practices Released

The independent committee that advises the Minister responsible for Animal Welfare, has today released a report on animal welfare in rodeos, together with advice to the Minister making recommendations to improve the welfare of the animals in rodeos. More>>





InfoPages News Channels