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Why an 18 Year Old Disabled University Student is Fighting for the Rights of 6 Million Unpaid Carers

Press release February 26, 2009 Health

There are 6 million unpaid carers in the UK. Many of them absolutely desperate for help but little idea how to get it. Here's why this has to stop.

Chandlers Ford, Hampshire, UK, 26th February 2009 - There are 6 million unpaid carers in the UK. Many of who rightly deserve help. "Having the willpower and commitment to look after the ones we love despite any cost to ourselves is a goal that many people would aspire to" says Hampshire born social care veteran George Baker, "but" he adds "for many of the UK's unpaid carers, sticking to this ideal has a serious impact on their health and wellbeing".  This raises the question: who's responsibility is it to care for people who cannot support themselves independently?

"When a family member or friend falls ill or has an accident, the natural reaction is to offer to help! Problems arise when people need family help for a sustained/indefinite period. The person doing the caring must almost put their life 'on hold' in order to continue to help," George says. "In some situations this may work. But, in the majority of cases it causes huge problems and unhappiness for the carer." "It is not reasonable to 'expect' the friends and relatives of disabled/ill people to care for them at the expense of their own health and ambitions, there should be a clear path to help if a carer so wishes. At present that path is akin to negotiating an arms truce with more bureaucracy than anyone can handle."

Furthermore, George says that because unpaid carers spend a lot of their time caring, they are often unable to have a job. He argues that "By not properly supporting unpaid carers to stay healthy and keep in work, we are not only removing them from the job market, but reducing, often severely, the amount of revenue they plough back into economy both through taxes and spending."

Physically disabled himself, George needs 24/7 support from a carer. "Until I was 15, my sole carer was my mum, she was completely and fully devoted to looking after me 24/7. It took me 8 years to get the care package I need to allow my Mum and I independence again.  That is simply unacceptable."

To help get unpaid carers and the person they care for the help they need, George Baker, an 18 year old university student from Hampshire, has written the comprehensive, insider's guide to the UK's Health and Social Care System. Entitled 'How To Secure the Perfect Care Package!', this unique book explains, from start to finish, the process of obtaining the help ill and vulnerable people are entitled to receive, something which has NEVER been done before.

George Baker is available for interview, articles and the right speaking engagements and can be contacted at [email protected] or on 02380 906140. A copy of the book is available for review on request.