The Government’s response to supporting family caregivers is mean spirited and designed to fail, says Labour’s Disability Issues Spokesperson Ruth Dyson.
“Figures released by the Ministry of Health show that only a tiny percentage of the eligible families have applied for payment under the Government’s caregiver scheme.
“Ministers Jonathan Coleman and Nicky Wagner need to show their support for family caregivers, scrap the current law which was introduced in 2013 and give these families a fair go.
"The reason so few families have applied for payment is because the system is flawed. The Ministers have had six months in the job. Now is the time to see some action from them.
“The legislation allowing for family caregivers to be paid was passed through all stages under urgency. I warned back then that the law was wrong in principle and flawed in its detail. Those warnings have been borne out by the abysmal take-up by families.
“Caregivers are missing out on being fairly paid for their work. I challenge the two responsible Ministers to deliver fairness for these families," Ruth Dyson says.