How does this impact on Community Wellbeing? I have to be available all the time, due to child illness, school refusal, or being sent home from school. Functioning on very little sleep. I would have been off work for two weeks. Expectations to work as a carer with limited energy. Also the childcare costs are more expensive for a child with additional needs, on a limited income with benefits. I have a friend who is suffering with health problems because it is really stressful trying to manage time and money on a zero hours contract. I have offered to help. I know from my own experience that when you are struggling and depressed sometimes you really need someone there with you to support you. When I was hit with benefit sanctions I had nothing to live on for six weeks and relied on foodbanks and charity. The welfare grant covered bills but not rent arrears – so very stressful when money is coming out of your account and there is none going back in. Why should the Committee focus on this as part of their future work? As carers there is pressure put on us to find work. The benefits system isn’t geared up for carers. Every six months I have to have a work focused interview – my child has a diagnosis which won’t change. If carers are mentally and physically healthy they are better parents. Operating under stress due to living daily in poverty makes people ill. I am doing everything possible to improve my life but I am still in this position.
Zero hours contracts are wrong and shouldn't be tolerated in a just society. It reminds me of stories from the depression when people had to queue up and wait to see if they were hired for a day or not.
Carers provide invaluable support for wellbeing of wider society.
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