From the TUC

Carer’s Allowance and the Benefit Cap

06 Oct 2010, by in Society & Welfare

A lot of people have asked whether the government’s planned restrictions on Child Benefit have gone through a proper equality impact assessment. Should we be asking the same question about the Benefit Cap? I ask because it looks to me as though including Carers Allowance in the Chancellor’s list of benefits that count towards the Benefits Cap will have a disproportionate impact on women.

The government’s equality impact assessment of Carer’s Allowance indicates that nearly three quarters of the people who get CA are women; including CA will increase the likelihood of being affected by the Benefits Cap more for women than for men.

Yesterday I pointed out how unfair it was that Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit is counted towards the cap, because it isn’t meant to cover living costs, it’s a form of compensation. A similar issue applies here: carers repeatedly say that they value Carer’s Allowance not just for the money (which is obviously welcome and needed) but because it recognises the hard unpaid work they do. Now those who live in families that have a total income over the threshold won’t be recognised – this does not seem fair to me.

3 Responses to Carer’s Allowance and the Benefit Cap

  1. Rosemary
    Oct 6th 2010, 4:12 pm

    Many thanks for raising this issue Richard.

    Carers are amongst the most responsible members of society. Without their contribution our NHS and social care systems would collapse. Transferring carers to the proposed Universal Credit , a benefit that suggests carers are not working, are not contributing to society is an insult and a contradiction of the government’s claim to ‘recognise’ carers’ ‘immense contribution’ to society.

    Carers’ valuable social input should be recognised by keeping carer benefits separate from the rest of the benefit system.

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  3. rebecca
    Oct 21st 2010, 10:37 pm

    this is compleatly unfair i am a single mother of four children one who has severe autism which gives a realy challanging life for us.why should i be penalised for choosing to care for him myself and have my carers allowance put into the universal benefit system this is outragous and unfair