More needs to be done to help Bermondsey and Old Southwarks 8464 carers - Simon Hughes

More needs to be done to help Bermondsey and Old Southwark's 8464 carers

Today is Carers Rights Day, and it is clear that more needs to be done to support the 8464 carers in our local community who are the unsung heroes of the system.

New research by Carers UK shows there are 2770 people who begin caring annually.

Carers save the state tens of billions of pounds a year and the Liberal Democrats have created a package of measures to support carers as part of our pre-manifesto.

The package includes raising the amount carers can earn before losing their allowance.

It also contains measures for more flexible working hours, support in returning to the jobs market and a scheme informing carers of their rights and giving them access to facilities.

This follows Lib Dem plans announced earlier this year to introduce an annual Carer's Bonus of up to £250.

There are 6464 carers in our local area, and they all do a remarkable job. We need to make sure they receive the support they need.

Carers contribute so much to our economy and society we want to make it easier for them to stay in work and balance their caring responsibilities with other parts of their lives.

I believe in fighting for opportunity for everyone in order to build a stronger economy and a fairer society and that means really valuing the work that informal carers do, day in day out.