Each carer’s situation is unique. We provide the information below as general guidance, but please speak to us or to a legal advisor if you would like more information about your particular situation. If you feel you are being treated unfairly under the law please contact us so we can support you with any comments or complaints you wish to make. We help you know your rights and make sure that your voice is heard, so that you are able to clearly explain how you feel about things, what you need, or why you feel something should be changed.
This Accessing Public Services Toolkit from Cerebra aims to support disabled people and carers, as well as their families and advisers, who are encountering difficulties with the statutory agencies in relation to the provision of health, social care and education support services. This toolkit aims to unpick these problems and to develop effective strategies for resolving them.
The pieces of legislation presented below pertain to carers’ rights in Wales:
- The Social Services and Wellbeing Act 2014
This repeals and brings together the majority of the other pieces of legislation listed below. Carer Wales have published an Updated Policy briefing on the act which you can access here – with thanks to Carers Wales and Professor Luke Clements. Carers Wales and Carers Trust Wales have also jointly developed a set of resources which are published on the Care Council for Wales website and are accessible here.
- Carers Strategies (Wales) Measure 2010
From 2012 onwards, Local Health Boards and local authorities/social services will have a duty to produce local information and consultation strategies for carers.
- Equality Act 2010
This act ensures that carers are not disadvantaged because they are caring for someone (discrimination by association). The text of the Equality Act 2010 is available here.
- Childcare Act 2006
The second part of this act applies to Wales, and within this part 27 covers the duty to provide information, advice and assistance to children with additional needs. The text of the Childcare Act 2006 is available here.
- Work and Families Act 2006
Part 12 of this act gives carers the right to ask for flexible working arrangements. This could include altering an employee’s arriving and leaving times, allowing working hours to be compressed or annualised, access to a phone, or granting emergency leave. The request must be put in writing and show it does not harm the business. Be aware that another arrangement may be offered, and this should be a dialogue between employee and employer. The text of the Work and Families Act 2006 is available here.
- Carers Equal Opportunities Act 2004
This act helps ensure that carers are not disadvantaged because they are caring for someone. It includes your right to have your needs considered, and to have authorities co-operate on your behalf. The text of the Carers Equal Opportunities Act 2004 is available here.
- Carers and Disabled Children Act 2000
This act makes provision for the assessment of carers’ needs, in order to provide services to help carers, and the making of direct payment to carers and disabled children 16 or 17 years old, in lieu of provision of services to them, and for connected purposes. The text of the Carers and Disabled Children Act 2000 is available here.
- Carers (Recognition and Services) Act 1995
This Act puts a duty on the local authority (social services department) to carry out a Carer’s Assessment as part of its community care assessment, if the carer “provides or intends to provide a substantial amount of care on a regular basis”. The carer can request an assessment and the local authority must take this into account when deciding on the services to be offered for the cared-for person. The text of the Carers (Recognition and Services) Act 1995 is available here.
- Disabled Persons (Services, Consultation and Representation) Act 1986