Speaking on Carers Rights Day, Kenneth Gibson has highlighted the contribution of carers across Scotland:
"It is important to recognise the vital role that unpaid carers play in communities across Scotland.
“Carers Rights Day is crucial in helping people identify themselves as a carer so they can access the support they need and are entitled to at the right time.
“The Carers (Scotland) Act will commence in April 2018 and make a meaningful difference to unpaid carers. It will contribute towards the improvement of their health and wellbeing, ensuring that they can have a life alongside caring.
“There is a duty on each local authority to establish an information and advice service for carers, including, amongst other things, carers rights.
“We will also prepare a carers’ charter, setting out the rights of carers as provided for in or under the Carers Act. We will be working with carers and carer organisations on how best to take this forward, and to ensure that the charter is accessible to adult carers and young carers.
“The SNP Government will use its new social security powers to better support carers. It is unfair that the support they receive in the form of Carer’s Allowance, which is currently under the UK Government, is the lowest of all working age benefits. That is why we have committed to increase carer’s allowance to the same level as Jobseeker’s Allowance when the powers come to Scotland. Eligible carers will each get around £600 more a year.”
A range of online resources are available to support carers here.