Charter in Focus as Dumfries and Galloway Marks Carers Week

A FOCUS is being placed on the introduction of the new Carers Charter as part of Carers Week – running in Dumfries and Galloway from June 11 to June 17.

The Charter was published before the introduction of the Carers (Scotland) Act last month, which is aimed at supporting Carers to continue in their caring role, giving Carers a stronger voice, and helping to ensure their own health and wellbeing.

Dumfries and Galloway Health and Social Care Chief Officer Julie White said: “This year the theme for Carers Week is ‘Healthy and Connected’, and key to that is an awareness of the new Carers Charter which sets out the rights of Carers in or under the Act.
“Carers play an incredibly important role across Scotland, and no more so than here in Dumfries and Galloway.
“It’s therefore important that we have a week dedicated to focusing on their role, and promoting something as important as the Carers Charter which provides support and backing.”

As required by section 36 of the Carers (Scotland) Act, the Scottish Ministers have prepared this Carers’ Charter which sets out the rights of carers in or under the Act.

The Act also requires local authorities to have a local information and advice service for Carers.

These services must provide information and advice about a number of things relevant to carers, including the Carers’ rights set out in the Carers’ Charter.

Jim McColm is a Carer and also represents Carers as a member of the Integration Joint Board which is responsible for the vast majority of the region’s health and social care services.

He said: “The Carers Charter is an important feature of the changes we saw taking place for Carers last month.
“Because of that, I’d really like to encourage all Carers to familiarise themselves with the Charter and if they have any questions to seek advice from Dumfries and Galloway Carers Centre who will be happy to help.”

Fellow Integration Joint Board member Lesley Bryce is looking forward to Carers Week as a chance to recognise the role of Carers and promote their rights.

Lesley said: “Sometimes many unpaid Carers find it challenging to take care of their own well-being whilst caring and too often put their own needs to the back of the queue.
“The impact of caring on health and well-being should not be underestimated.
“Many Carers are feeling too stressed, too often. This Carers Week is about building communities that support Carers across Dumfries and Galloway to stay healthy and connected.
“It is great to see activities, events and information sessions for Carers taking place all week.
“This helps to raise awareness and to recognise the valuable contribution that Carers make to families and communities throughout the region.”

To view the Carers Charter, visit http://www.gov.scot/Resource/0053/00533199.pdf

Anyone with questions regarding changes resulting from the Act can contact Dumfries and Galloway Carers Centre, which serves the entire region with offices in Dumfries, Castle Douglas and Newton Stewart. Telephone 01387 248600.



Pictured promoting the Carers Charter as part of Carers Week are, left to right: commissioning officer Larel Currie and Carers Ann Giles and Christine D’Arcy


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