House of Commons: Work and Pensions Committee Reports
August 1, 2008
1. The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is not effective in supporting people over transitions in and out of care and paid work in particular, and providing a service for those not identifying as ªcarersº.
2. The DWP service to carers does not provide sufficient income as an income-replacement bene®t, nor support over caring care with paid work. This limits its effectiveness to support them because (a) many people combine paid employment with caring (b) over long periods, evidence suggests combining paid work with care work is the only way to keep carers' out of poverty.
3. Carer's Allowance does not provide adequate or personalised employment support for carers.
4. Carers are not easily de®ned or identi®ed as a coherent or static group. It is also primarily the relationship to the labour market, and gender that drives inequalities affecting carers. Due to this, it does not make sense to conceive of ªcarersº in terms of equalities legislation.
5. The costs of employment support for carers (as well as formal services for the people they care for) should be considered against the opportunity costs of carers kept inactive, both in terms of their own family income, and the national economy.
6. The DWP should consider the Carer's Allowance becomes part of a Single Working Age Benefit.
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