Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law

Sociology and Social Policy

New research shows that parents of disabled children provide the equivalent of three full-time jobs in hours of caregiving per week

06 December 2017 | Rebecca Stephenson

A recent study conducted by Dr Lisa Buckner shows that parents of disabled children are routinely providing over 100 hours of care per week - the equivalent of working three full-time jobs. However, unlike workers in employment, they do not receive benefits such as sick pay, regular holidays or a pension.

Commissioned by Contact, the charity for families with disabled children, the study comes at a time when respite care centres - which provide a lifeline to families giving round the clock care - are being closed or threatened with closure.

Dr Buckner said: “Many parents feel they do not get sufficient support for the vital role they are doing. Where they do get help from outside the family, there is a very real concern that those services are going to be lost or reduced because of the squeeze on spending.”

Together with 50 other charities under the banner of the Disabled Children’s Partnership, Contact is calling on the government to stop the cycle of disadvantage for families with disabled children, highlighting the vital role played by respite care centres and other short break services.

Dr Buckner's report, Caring More Than Most, is the most up to date and comprehensive profile of the half a million households who have a disabled child in the UK today.

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