Baulkham Hills State Liberal MP David Elliott today encouraged people to have their say on laws created to better recognise and thank the more than 850,000 carers in NSW.
Consultation for the statutory review of the Carers (Recognition) Act 2010 starts today and ends on April 15 2016.
The Act aims to recognise carers, creates the NSW Carers Charter and establishes the Carers Advisory Council.
“One in ten people in NSW are carers, whose unpaid support allows their loved ones to live independent lives and remain in their homes and communities,” Mr Elliott said.
“This care is fundamental to family life and community wellbeing yet sadly too often goes unrecognised.
“I encourage members of the community to have their say so that we have laws that ensures our carers are supported and acknowledged for the role they play in improving the lives of the people they care for.”
Carers provide support to family or friends who need help because of disability, chronic illness, mental illness or are ageing.
Research by Access Economics estimates that the hours of care provided by unpaid carers across Australia would cost more than $60 billion to replace.
Liz Ingram, a member of the Carers Advisory Council who cares for close family members, says the Act is very important to her as a carer.
“The Act sets out to increase awareness of the valuable contribution that carers make to our community. I think carer recognition is gradually improving – this Act, the Carers Advisory Council and the Carers Strategy are all helping achieve this,” Ms Ingram said.
“I am pleased the Minister has announced this review, and that carers and the community will have the opportunity to have input.”
The Act compliments the NSW Government’s Carers Strategy 2014-2019. The Strategy is a five-year plan to help ensure carers are respected and valued, have the time to care for themselves and have the same right and opportunities as other members of the community.