The Liberal Democrats are calling on the government to "give carers a break", by giving councils immediate emergency funding to provide the support services unpaid carers need to take a weekly break.
More than 24,300 people in Oldham are thought to be looking after elderly, disabled or vulnerable people during the Covid-19 pandemic.
In a letter to Chancellor Rishi Sunak, Lib Dem leader Ed Davey highlights research from Carers UK showing that nationally:
- 64 per cent of carers have not been able to take any breaks from their caring role during the pandemic,
- 74 per cent feel exhausted and worn out as a result of caring during Covid, and
- 44 per cent say they are reaching breaking point.
The Liberal Democrats are calling on the Chancellor to provide local authorities with emergency funding in his Budget on 3 March 'at the latest'.
Launching the campaign, Mr Davey said: "Our wonderful carers deserve more support, but they are too often forgotten and ignored by people in power.
"The Chancellor mustn’t ignore carers any longer. He must provide local councils with emergency funding now, to finally give carers a break.
“Liberal Democrats are working to build a more caring society as we emerge from this pandemic.”
Local Liberal Democrat Councillor Sam Al-Hamdani (pictured), who represents Saddleworth West and Lees, added: “People in Oldham looking after their loved ones are doing a remarkable and important job in very difficult circumstances.
“Oldham’s unpaid carers have taken on dramatically increased caring responsibilities during this pandemic. Most haven’t been able to take a single break since the pandemic started. Most are simply exhausted.
“Liberal Democrats are standing up for carers and calling on the Government to give them a break.”