Welsh Conservatives debate plans to improve support for carers | Y Ceidwadwyr Cymreig yn trafod cynlluniau i wella cymorth ar gyfer gofalwyr

Welsh Conservatives debated the role of carers and their plans to increase support for carers across Wales.

The opposition day debate (13th June 2018) coincided with Carers Week 2018, and the motion recognises the vital contribution made to society by the estimated 370,000 unpaid carers of all ages across Wales, whilst also calling on the Welsh Government to:

  • Implement the Welsh Conservative policy for a Young Carers Future Grant, which would ensure young carers are supported to pursue further and higher full time education and training opportunities;
  • Publish figures for how many carers' needs have been assessed since the introduction of the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014 and how many of those assessed needs have been met;
  • Introduce a right to respite for both carers and those they care for.

Regrettably, the Welsh Government tabled an amendment to the motion, deleting point 2, and the Shadow Culture Secretary – Suzy Davies – has accused them of “seeking to evade scrutiny”.

The debate came a week after the Welsh Conservatives announced proposals for a Young Carers Future Grant, which would give young adult carers, who lose their care allowance, £60 a week to enable them to enter full time education and training.

At present, young adult carers fall foul of the so-called 21-hour rule, which means that they cannot study on a course exceeding 21 hours per week and still claim carers’ allowance of £62.70 per week.

Commenting ahead of the debate, Shadow Social Services Secretary, Suzy Davies AM, said: “Carers make a vital contribution to Welsh society and there are a number of measures the Welsh Government could implement now to ease the burden on their shoulders.

“For a start, we want to see a proper assessment of the needs of Wales’ many carers – something the Welsh Government was supposed to be doing as a result of their own Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014.

“Not for the first time, however, the Welsh Government is seeking to evade scrutiny.

“Refusing to publish this data merely suggests that not enough progress is being made to assess the needs of our carers, or to ensure that their needs are met.”

Mrs Davies said the Welsh Conservatives would introduce measures to help carers to “re-charge their batteries”.

She said: “We would introduce a ‘right to respite’ for both carers where time spent caring can be rewarded with time off to re-charge their batteries and enable them to return to their care duties free from stress and ill-health.

“The physical and emotional toll of their work should not be underestimated - it can lead to anxiety, depression and a host of other illnesses unless they receive the rest and support they deserve.

“And we’ve been clear that young adult carers shouldn’t have to drop out of part or full time education, or apprenticeship opportunities, just because they have caring responsibilities.

“Our young adult carers are true heroes, undervalued even though they keep families together and take the strain of looking after vulnerable family members. If we can help them keep up with the continuing education or apprenticeships they may need to plan for their own futures, then we absolutely should.”

“The Young Adult Carers Futures Grant means that they wouldn’t have to worry about losing their carers allowance just because they wanted to continue in education.  it will help give young adult carers access to vital opportunities that they often miss out on through no fault of their own.”

“The Welsh Government should back these steps to ensure we clearly recognise the contribution that carers make to our society, and the estimated £5.7billion they save the Welsh economy in unpaid care, through increased support and funding. Communities across Wales depend on it.”

 

Mae’r Ceidwadwyr Cymreig wedi bod yn trafod rôl gofalwyr a’u cynlluniau i gynyddu cymorth ar gyfer gofalwyr ledled Cymru.

Roedd diwrnod dadl y gwrthbleidiau (13 Mehefin 2018) yn cyd-fynd ag Wythnos Gofalwyr 2018, ac mae’r cynnig yn cydnabod y cyfraniad hanfodol yr amcangyfrifir y mae 370,000 o ofalwyr di-dâl o bob oedran yn ei wneud i gymdeithas ledled Cymru, gan alw hefyd ar Lywodraeth Cymru i wneud y canlynol:

  • gweithredu polisi’r Ceidwadwyr Cymreig ar gyfer Grant Dyfodol Gofalwyr Ifanc, a fyddai’n sicrhau bod gofalwyr ifanc yn cael cymorth i ddilyn addysg bellach ac addysg uwch llawn amser a chyfleoedd hyfforddi;
  • Cyhoeddi ffigurau ar gyfer y nifer o anghenion gofalwyr a aseswyd ers cyflwyno Deddf Gwasanaethau Cymdeithasol a Llesiant (Cymru) a nifer yr anghenion hynny a aseswyd sydd wedi’u diwallu;
  • Cyflwyno hawl i seibiant ar gyfer gofalwyr a’r rhai sy’n derbyn gofal ganddynt.

Yn anffodus, cyflwynodd Llywodraeth Cymru welliant i’r cynnig, gan ddileu pwynt 2, ac mae Suzy Davies, Ysgrifennydd Diwylliant yr Wrthblaid , wedi’u cyhuddo o geisio osgoi bod yn destun craffu.

Cynhaliwyd y ddadl wythnos wedi i’r Ceidwadwyr Cymreig gyhoeddi cynigion ar gyfer Grant Dyfodol Gofalwyr Ifanc, a fyddai’n sicrhau bod gofalwyr sy’n oedolion ifanc, sy’n colli eu lwfans gofal, yn derbyn £60 yr wythnos er mwyn eu galluogi i ddilyn addysg neu hyfforddiant llawn amser.

Ar hyn o bryd, mae gofalwyr sy’n oedolion ifanc yn cael cam oherwydd y rheol 21 awr, sy’n golygu na allant ddilyn cwrs sy’n fwy na 21 awr yr wythnos a dal ati i hawlio lwfans gofalwyr o £62.70 yr wythnos.

Meddai Suzy Davies AC, Ysgrifennydd Gwasanaethau Cymdeithasol yr Wrthblaid, cyn y drafodaeth: “Mae gofalwyr yn gwneud cyfraniad hanfodol i gymdeithas Cymru ac mae yna nifer o fesurau y gallai Llywodraeth Cymru eu gweithredu nawr er mwyn ysgafnhau’r baich ar eu hysgwyddau.  

“I gychwyn, hoffem weld anghenion y nifer fawr o ofalwyr a geir yng Nghymru yn cael eu hasesu’n briodol - rhywbeth yr oedd Llywodraeth Cymru i fod i’w wneud dan eu Deddf Gwasanaethau Cymdeithasol a Llesiant (Cymru) 2014.

“Fodd bynnag, nid dyma’r tro cyntaf y mae Llywodraeth Cymru wedi ceisio osgoi bod yn destun craffu.

“Mae gwrthod â chyhoeddi’r data hwn dim ond yn awgrymu nad oes digon o gynnydd yn cael ei wneud er mwyn asesu anghenion ein gofalwyr, neu i sicrhau bod eu hanghenion yn cael eu diwallu.”

Dywedodd Mrs Davies y byddai’r Ceidwadwyr Cymreig yn cyflwyno mesurau er mwyn helpu gofalwyr i gael seibiant.

Dywedodd: “Byddem ni’n cyflwyno ‘hawl i seibiant’ i ofalwyr lle bydden nhw’n cael amser i ffwrdd i gael seibiant fel gwobr am yr amser a dreulir yn gofalu a’u galluogi i ddychwelyd i’w dyletswyddau gofal heb straen a salwch.

“Ddylen ni ddim diystyru effaith corfforol ac emosiynol eu gwaith – gall arwain at bryder, iselder a llu o afiechydon eraill oni bai eu bod yn cael y gorffwys a’r cymorth y maen nhw’n eu haeddu.

“Ac rydyn ni wedi nodi’n glir na ddylai gofalwyr sy’n oedolion ifanc orfod rhoi’r gorau i addysg llawn amser, neu gyfleoedd prentisiaeth, dim ond oherwydd bod ganddyn nhw gyfrifoldebau gofalu.

“Mae ein gofalwyr sy’n oedolion ifanc yn arwyr go iawn, a dydyn nhw ddim yn cael eu gwerthfawrogi ddigon er eu bod yn cadw teuluoedd gyda’i gilydd ac yn wynebu’r straen o ofalu am aelodau o’r teulu sy’n agored i niwed. Os gallwn eu helpu i barhau â’r addysg barhaus neu’r prentisiaethau y mae angen iddyn nhw eu cynllunio o bosib ar gyfer eu dyfodol eu hunain, yna dylem wneud hynny yn ddi-os.”

“Mae’r Grant Dyfodol Gofalwyr Ifanc yn golygu na fyddai’n rhaid iddyn nhw boeni am golli eu lwfans gofalwyr dim ond oherwydd eu bod am barhau gyda’u haddysg. Bydd yn helpu i roi mynediad i ofalwyr sy’n oedolion ifanc i gyfleoedd hanfodol y maen nhw’n eu colli’n aml iawn heb ddim bai arnyn nhw.”

“Dylai Llywodraeth Cymru gefnogi’r camau hyn er mwyn sicrhau ein bod yn cydnabod yn glir y cyfraniad y mae gofalwyr yn ei wneud i’n cymdeithas, a’r £5.7 biliwn yr amcangyfrifir y maen nhw’n ei arbed i economi Cymru mewn gofal di-dâl, drwy gynyddu cymorth a chyllid. Mae cymunedau ledled Cymru yn dibynnu arnyn nhw.”