McEntee encourages Meath carers to apply for revitalised Carers Support Grant

Tuesday, 31st May 2016

Carers support grant now fully restored to €1,700

Newly appointed Minister for Mental Health and Older People, and Meath
East Fine Gael T.D. Helen McEntee has welcomed the news from Minister
for Social Protection Leo Varadkar T.D. that the Carers Support Grant,
formally known as the Respite Care Grant, has been fully restored to
its pre-recession level of €1,700.

The grant is paid automatically to some carers but Minister McEntee
urged all Meath carers who do not automatically qualify to apply for
the grant, and said there is still time to make an application. The
grant is an annual payment available to all carers providing full-time
care and attention to an older person or a child or adult with a
disability, regardless of their means or PRSI contributions.

“The 2016 Carer’s Support Grant which will be paid this week has been
fully restored to its previous level of €1,700. This is an important
grant which is paid automatically to carers who are already in receipt
of schemes like the Carer’s Allowance, Carer’s Benefit and Domiciliary
Care Allowance.  This new Partnership Government, and myself
personally as a local TD and Minister, are very conscious of the huge
sacrifices made by our carers who save this state a fortune and bring
happiness and dignity to many” Minister McEntee said.

Other full-time carers who are not eligible for these schemes can also
apply for the Grant, and Minister McEntee urged them to make an
application too. Carers who provide full-time care for more than one
person may also be entitled to €1,700 for each person that they are
caring for.

“Formerly known as the Respite Care Grant, the payment had been
reduced by €325 during the economic crisis. However, I am very pleased
that we have been able to restore it to its previous level of €1,700.
Total expenditure on Carer’s Allowance, Carer’s Benefit, Domiciliary
Care Allowance and the Carer’s Support Grant /Respite Care Grant has
increased from under €752 million in 2010 to just over €877 million in
2015.  The estimated expenditure on these schemes for 2016 is in
excess of €911 million.  This represents good progress in the right
direction” stated Minister McEntee.

Budget 2016 also provided for the Carer’s Allowance to be paid for 12
weeks from January 2016, after the death of the person being cared for
(previously this payment was paid for six weeks).

€500,000 for transition training

“Minister Varadkar has further informed me that his Department of
Social Protection is making €500,000 available again, through the
Dormant Accounts Fund, for programmes to help home carers with the
transition at the end of their caring role. These programmes will be
administered by Pobal. The Department is currently finalising the
guidelines and Pobal will be assisting in the application and
assessment process,” Minister McEntee said.

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