The publication this week at the Scottish Parliament of a new bill aimed to improve conditions for those caring for others in Moray and throughout Scotland is being welcomed.
The Carers (Scotland) Bill, launched by Scottish Government Minister Jamie Hepburn, will entitle all adult carers to their own support plan and all young carers to a young carer statement, setting out the help and support each carer is entitled to.
It will also lead to the establishment of local carer advice and information centre in Moray and mandate the Moray Council to publish local carer strategies.
The spokesperson on Health and Social Care for the SNP opposition group at Moray Council, Councillor Patsy Gowans, has welcomed the publication of the Bill, saying the efforts made by carers both paid and unpaid should never be underestimated, pointing out the high levels of responsibility carers take on whether family or professional.
Councillor Gowans said: “I persistently raise in the Council the value of carers – both professional and those who care for family or for a friend.
“It is critical that carers receive the support they deserve and that is ensuring that professional carers are properly paid for the challenging and hugely responsible jobs they do and, in the case of the bill announced this week, recognising and enshrining carers’ rights in law for the first time.
“As people are living longer the role of the carer is even more necessary in society. Therefore the role of the carer should be even more valued.
“This bill represents real progress – and will represent a real boost for carers and their loved ones. Meanwhile work by the Scottish Government and by Councils on extending the living wage right through the care sector is also vital.
“The third sector will play a crucial role in Health and Social Care integration and paid and unpaid carers will play an absolutely vital role in getting to where we want to be on social care.”
Richard Lochhead MSP said: “Over the years I have dealt with cases from carers, seen the work of organisations in Moray like Quarriers and like many there are people I know personally who have a caring role at some level. :
“The contribution carers make to their families, our Moray communities and to Scottish society as a whole is invaluable and we owe them all a huge debt of thanks – and it is only right that we do everything we possibly can to give them the support they need and deserve.”
Information on the new rights for carers can be found online.