There has been a significant rise in the number of people providing unpaid care since the coronavirus outbreak.

9% of the general public said they are providing unpaid care but that they had only started doing so since the coronavirus outbreak. This is nearly 1 in 10 adults and equates to an estimated 4.5 million unpaid carers.

Profile of the people who have started caring since the start of the coronavirus outbreak:

• 59% are women and 41% are men. This means the newer carers are slightly more likely to be women than the people who were already caring.

• Almost two thirds (62%) are in paid work – 41% are working full time, and 21% working part time. These new unpaid carers are 30% more likely to be in paid work and these figures suggest that 2.8 million extra workers are now juggling work and unpaid care.

• 6% are full time students. This is slightly higher than those who were already caring.

• 35% are a parent or guardian for someone under 18, which is significantly higher than those who were caring already before the crisis.

• 14% are over 65, 17% are 55-64, 22% are 45-54, 21% are 35-44, 16% are 25-34, and 10% are 18-24. This indicates that the newer carers are younger, on average, than those who were already caring. The polling did not ask about the levels of care being provided, or what types of care were being provided. Typically, the majority will be providing low levels of care, but some will be providing significantly more. According to the 2011 Census, 64% of carers in England and Wales care for 1-19 hours each week whilst 13% provide 20-49 hours and 24% provide 50 hours or more unpaid care.

Click here to read the full Carers Week 2020 Research Report


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