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Carers must show politicians they matter by voting

Vote!

The General Election is expected to take place on Thursday 6th May

Barack Obama yesterday signed a new Health Care Bill extending healthcare to an extra 32 million Americans. But already the fear is that in November’s mid-term election Democrats will lose votes because the 32 million Americans who are going to benefit from the Bill are generally poorer people and are, generally, less likely to vote. Rich people already have healthcare cover and are more likely to vote and are more likely to oppose expanding healthcare cover.

I find it strange that the very people who have most to gain from a change in Government policies are often the people who are least likely to vote. The result of this is that political parties ignore their needs and concentrate on pleasing the people who do vote.

For example, many of you might be surprised to learn that over 90% of estates are not subject to Inheritance Tax but it is such a prominent issue. Stamp duty is another big issue (new policy in today’s budget) although it only affects a small minority. And of course we’ve already heard about politicians trying to win the ‘grey’ vote.

This creates a vicious circle where people feel powerless, disillusioned, unrepresented, and as a result they decide not to vote. But this isn’t the answer.

Carers will have a lot to consider when deciding who to vote for, some unrelated to health or social care. Look at what each political party is offering you and decide who deserves your vote. My message is that not voting makes it less likely you will be listened to. So whatever you do, vote!

And be realistic, there might not be any party that offers to solve all your problems or even comes close – I guess we have to recognise that they juggle competing priorities. But if we stop shouting, carers may not even be a “juggled” priority at all. So show them you matter by voting (you can register here).

I’ll be in the Carers.org chatroom from 7pm onwards tonight. If you’re a carer and you want more information about what the parties are offering you, come along.

And if you’re feeling in the mood for protesting but are unable to take to the streets, Carers UK have an excellent virtual protest blog. You just need to send them a photo of you and your message for the politicians and they’ll post it up for you.

Take care,

Gordon

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March 24, 2010 - Posted by | General Election | , , , ,

2 Comments »

  1. Being optimistic , the choice before us all is quite simple …. which Party will probably be the lessor of evils.

    There are virtually no positives from voting for any of the parties unless there is a special factor … for me , Vince Cable …. none are proposing anything remotely radical enough to ease our Plight ( and for our Carees ) let alone
    even consider what needs to be done.

    Since the beginning of the various Carer Forums , I have always stated that politicians are no friends of carers …. today , we are entirely in their hands …. for whatever crumbs are thrown our way from the taxpayers’ table.

    Our only real hope is a full scale financial meltdown to finish the old order \ way of thinking … what will follow must surely be better ( eventually ) than what we have now ….. I foresee little else that can change our world , or loosen our chains to the System that keeps so many of us in perceptual isolation \ exclusion.

    Comment by Paul | March 24, 2010 | Reply

  2. Gordon, yes I will be voting, because I always remember what the suffragettes’ did for women.
    I am quite looking forward to the candidates coming round to my house, when I intend to grab them with questions about the carers grant.

    Hi Paul,
    It was good to read your post, I hope you are keeping well. I think it comes down to conscience, whether we decide to vote or not. I am interested by what you mean by a full scale financial meltdown? I cannot see how anything has changed when you say that carers are in the hands of MP’s. surely this applies to everyone not just carers.
    The only way I can see any change for carers is by us to keep shouting, and I ‘m sure you will continue to do that.
    Sometimes it feels there is too much to shout for, carers allowance, carers in fuel poverty, meals on wheels, services being cut, etc, etc. etc.
    Young people have to be shown what is ahead for them, but will they listen, I doubt it, I know I would not have been interested when I was young.

    Comment by Wendy Chill4us | March 25, 2010 | Reply


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