Invisible Carers


Ignored and neglected by successive governments, Carers are the invisible army that continue to hold our failing health and social care network together.

Back in 2015 I can remember being commissioned to create some cartoons for Carers UK based upon a report that they’d just issued. The report stated that “over 6.8 million people (were) providing unpaid care to disabled, seriously-ill or older loved ones”. This was estimated as saving the State £132 billion a year. It shows a staggering increase in the value of carers’ support since 2001, almost doubling from £68 million.

More Recent

More recent research in 2018 shows that this cost had risen to £139 billion and shows that the total cost of informal care is nearly as large as the nation’s entire health spending of £144 billion, which stand at eight times total spending on adult social care!

Description of cartoon for those using screen reading software

A man and a woman in suits wearing DWP identity labels are handing coats to two people. The coats have the word ‘carer’ on them. One of the people being handed a coat is identified as being a son and the other a sister. As they put the coats on, they start to become invisible (this is portrayed as having their lower halves showing the background through them). In the background is a woman identified as being a wife who is also becoming invisible. Two other people are also seen as invisible with just their outlines showing. As he hands out the coats, the DWP man is saying: “Just think of it as playing an invisible but important role in our big society!”


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