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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 11 Hansard (Tuesday, 23 October 2018) . . Page.. 4073 ..


do and their generosity in giving up their often minimal time to contribute to developing the strategy and action plan. The overwhelming feedback that I received when talking to carers at the launch was that the deliberative democracy process that the ACT government used in consultations to produce this document helped the carers feel as though their voices were heard and valued.

This is a plan by carers for carers, a plan that makes me feel confident that our ACT carers strategy first three-year action plan will deliver an ongoing commitment to support carers within our community. The carers strategy is a 10-year strategy, demonstrating our government’s ongoing commitment to supporting carers in our community. The first three-year action plan contains 25 actions that fall under five themes: service and support for carers; recognition and awareness; inclusion; support for young carers; and workforce and skills recognition. All these actions have been a direct result of what carers have stated that they want and need to make their lives more comfortable. While they are ambitious, I feel that they are worthwhile and achievable actions.

These actions will guide support for carers and respond to the challenges they face, while recognising the essential contribution that carers make to our community through their caring role. I am pleased to report that progress is already underway on some of the early actions, demonstrating the commitment that our government and our community sector partners have in ensuring that we work together for our carers.

The Education Directorate provides a range of supports to young carers and is working to ensure that they receive the support that they need. Central to the future of education strategy launched this year is the need to know and respond to students, including identifying any additional supports required to ensure that they remain engaged in education. Under this strategy there will be a greater focus on ensuring that all students, including young carers, are engaged collaboratively in designing their own individualised learning pathway, incorporating wellbeing supports. These critical educational changes were identified as a priority when I was talking to young carers at the strategy launch last week.

Early progress is also being delivered by Libraries ACT through the promotion of digital services to support carers to do business online. Carers have identified that the shift to online delivery for many government services, including the rollout of the national disability insurance scheme and Centrelink services, has been problematic as they do not always have access to computers or have the skills to navigate the online environment.

Furthermore, Carers ACT have taken the lead in providing for 10 people to complete a certificate IV in mental health peer work, which will increase the support for carers of people with a mental health condition. This work will be backed up by running a coaching program to support care and mentoring and will provide a drop-in space and mentoring for young carers.

A handbook for foster and kinship carers has been drafted and is in the final stages of editing. It will be released before the end of the year, assisting foster carers to stay informed about their role and the supports available to them.


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