OTTAWA, Oct. 22 /CNW Telbec/ - The report, Eldercare: What we know today,
released yesterday by Statistics Canada confirms what millions of Canadians
know all too well - providing care for the frail elderly is a growing and
demanding responsibility. The Canadian Caregiver Coalition (CCC) estimates
that 4-5 million Canadians try to balance work and caregiving for a family
member who is in need of support because of age, disabling medical condition,
chronic injury, long term illness or disability.
Family caregivers are the invisible and hidden backbone of the health and
long term care system in Canada contributing over $5 billion dollars of unpaid
care. 23% of Canadians report caring for a family member or close friend with
a serious health problem in the last 12 months.
The absence of public policy that responds to the needs of family
caregivers is a serious omission in Canada's social framework and requires
urgent attention. The CCC was encouraged by Prime Minister Harper's commitment
to family caregivers in the 2008 election campaign; and will continue to
engage in conversations with his government to advance the adoption of a
comprehensive Canadian Caregiving Strategy which includes:
1. Recognition of the importance of family caregiving in policy, practice
2. Provision of comprehensive caregiver support which includes financial
measures, services for caregivers based on their assessed needs, and
flexible work environments for those caregivers who are also employed
3. Research to enable evidence based decision making.
We must act on this compelling need. Canadians deserve no less
The Canadian Caregiver Coalition is a diverse group of organizations from
across Canada that join with caregivers, service providers, policy makers and
other stakeholders to identify and respond to the needs of caregivers in
Canada. The vision of the Canadian Caregivers Coalition is a Canada that
recognizes and respects the integral role of family caregivers in society, and
supports this role with the understanding that it is not a substitute for
public responsibility in health and social care.
For further information:
For further information: Marg McAlister, Canadian Caregiver Coalition,