The Australian Government recognises the exceptional contribution made by unpaid carers through the Carer Recognition Act 2010. The Carer Recognition Act 2010 stipulates that carers should have the same rights, choices, and opportunities as other Australians.
Subsection 7(1) — Each public service agency is to take all practicable measures to ensure that its employees and agents have an awareness and understanding of the Statement for Australia’s Carers.
We promote staff awareness and understanding of the Carer Recognition Act 2010 and the Statement for Australia’s Carers through our intranet and other departmental resources.
We inform the general public about the statement on Carer Gateway. For further information, go to carergateway.gov.au. We also fund Carers Australia to coordinate and manage National Carers Week activities each October. These activities raise the awareness of carers and their role and inform carers about available services and assistance.
Subsection 7(2) — Each public service agency’s internal human resources policies, so far as they may significantly affect an employee’s caring role, are to be developed having due regard to the Statement for Australia’s Carers.
Our human resources policies comply with the principles contained in the statement.
Our Enterprise Agreement includes carer’s leave entitlements. Staff have access to health and diversity rooms to help manage unforeseen caring responsibilities. Staff can access free counselling arranged through the Employee Assistance Program.
Our intranet also provides employees and managers with information about carers’ entitlements and internal and external resources.
Subsection 8(1) — Each public service care agency is to take all practicable measures to ensure that it, and its employees and agents, take action to reflect the principles of the Statement for Australia’s Carers in developing, implementing, providing or evaluating care supports.
Our standard funding agreement terms and conditions oblige funding recipients to comply with relevant laws, Australian Government policies, codes of ethics, regulations, or industry standards relevant to the activity.
Subsection 8(2) — Each public service care agency is to consult carers, or bodies that represent carers, when developing or evaluating care supports.
The Sector Working Group is a group of sector subject matter experts, brought together in June 2018 to provide advice relating to operational aspects of the Carer Gateway’s implementation. The group met five times, most recently in July 2019 to discuss the decommissioning of Commonwealth-funded carer programs, and the safe transition of carers onto the new Carer Gateway services.
From July 2019, new online supports became available through the Carer Gateway website. For further information, go to carergateway.gov.au. These new supports include free phone counselling, online peer support, self-guided coaching, and practical educational resources to improve carer wellbeing, skills, and knowledge.
From April 2020, a new national network of Carer Gateway service providers commenced providing access to individually tailored services for all carers. Supports include carer needs assessment, advice and support planning, counselling, peer support, financial support packages assisting carers to access employment, education, respite and transport, and online self-guided coaching.
We will undertake further consultation with carers and key stakeholders as the implementation and evaluation of Carer Gateway progresses.