The NSW Government is inviting carers and the community for input into a statutory review of the Carers Act. The Act aims to recognise carers, create the NSW Carers Charter and establish the Carers Advisory Council and compliments the NSW Government’s Carers Strategy 2014-2019. There are more than 850,000 carers in NSW with 100,000 under the age of 25 years.
The NSW Minister for Disability Services John Ajaka said the review is a chance for the government to take stock of its progress in better recognising carers. “I want to make sure we have the right laws in place to help support greater carer recognition and appreciation,” the minister said.
The NSW Carers Advisory Council met on February 29 and provided the Minister with an update on their progress under priority areas that included:
- Providing advice and input on the NDIS, to ensure its responsiveness to carers
- Promoting support for young carers in schools
- Responding to the needs of carers in emerging migrant communities
- Improving our understanding of carer needs and effective support for carers through a research agenda
The Minister also facilitated a group discussion with 16 carers as part of Carers NSW ‘carer conversations’ to hear directly from carers about their views of the Act as well as its impact on their lives. Carers spoke in depth about their experiences, re-iterated the importance of recognising the work carers do and were supportive of the Act’s objects and review.