Thursday, 5 January 2012

Kinship Carers are still paid less than Foster Carers

In today's Scotsman it is revealed that two thirds of Kinship Carers are still paid less than foster carers by local authorities, despite promises from the Scottish Government that progress would be made.

The article, published on 5th January 2012, reports 'Alex Salmond has been accused of one of the SNP’s “most serious betrayals” by breaking a promise to ensure that the carers of thousands of children being looked after by grandparents or family friends are paid the same as foster carers' and includes comment from Jackie Baillie, Scottish Labour's Health spokeswoman, and a Scottish Government Spokesman. 

The Poverty Truth Commission, which included Kinship Carers, has been challenging the Scottish Government, UK Government, Local Authorities, Health Boards and Kinship Carers to work together in order to improve life for for this highly vulnerable group of children and young people. The Commission believes that governments should involve directly those Kinship Carers who struggle against poverty in designing, implementing and evaluating solutions for their families.

The Poverty Truth Commission also believes it is important for decision makers to be reminded of the reality of life for Kinship Children and their Carers by hearing the stories of their lives.  

Moira, a Kinship Carer, is 66 and lives in East Glasgow. When she first took her granddaughter into her care 18 years ago she had no bed for her and very few baby clothes. She gave up her job to care for her full time and life was a real struggle. She now cares for four grandchildren. Two of them receive £40 per week kinship allowance from Glasgow council but the other two have never received an allowance, as lack of social work input when they were taken into her care means they are not recognised as officially under kinship care.

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