Last year, many kinship carers told us they were scared about contracting coronavirus, and concerned about what would happen to their children if they did. We worked with kinship carers to highlight the issue in the national media (see videos below) and pushed for kinship carers to be prioritised for the Covid19 vaccine. This included our chief executive writing an open letter to the Minister for Vaccine Deployment in December and again earlier this year to ask for kinship carers to be prioritised. We also wrote a letter to the Welsh Senedd regarding the Covid-19 vaccine.
In January the Minister responded “The Government greatly values the work of kinship carers and appreciates the difficulties the COVID-19 pandemic must have caused for this group”, but continues that the vaccine roll-out would continue to prioritise by age rather than ‘occupation’ and that government is committed to meeting its target to offer a vaccine to all adults by the end of July.
Thanks to the 350 kinship carers who took action and wrote to their MP in support of the campaign. We may not have succeeded this time, but all of us at Kinship are committed to working with you to keep up the pressure on government for fairer recognition and support for kinship families.
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If you are struggling and need support, please get in touch with our Advice Service.