Welfare changes could cost young carers £3,500 a year

Thousands of young carers and their families could lose more than £3,500 a year under proposed welfare reforms, according to The Children's Society.

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Thousands of young carers and their families could lose more than £3,500 a year under proposed welfare reforms, according to The Children’s Society.

The severe disability premium will be excluded from the universal credit system to be introduced in October 2013. The cut is expected to affect up to 25,000 people.

The premium gives additional support to disabled adults who have no one to care for them or are being looked after by a young carer. The money helps with the additional costs of living with a disability.

Young carers already lack support within the current benefits system because they are not entitled to carer’s allowance.

“These changes will only serve to pile more pressure on children caring for a disabled parent,” said Bob Reitemeier, chief executive of The Children’s Society. “The government should be making sure the family is supported in the home rather than rely on children to provide care.

“The changes will make life much harder than it already is for potentially thousands of vulnerable children. Children frequently tell us that their caring responsibilities affect their education, well-being and futures.”

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