During National Reconciliation Week, 28 May to 3 June, Mr Jim Toohey, President of Carers Queensland, is calling on the media to acknowledge the enormous contribution made by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians who care for another person with disability, a long-term physical or mental illness.
“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are more likely to be carers than people of the broader Australian community, and there has been an increase in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples identifying as carers – from 32,581 in 2006 to 45,328 in 2011,” said Mr Toohey.
Many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander carers accept caring as a normal part of family and community life and may not think of themselves as carers. Some carers have sole responsibility for caring, while others share it.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander carers are more likely to be younger than non-Indigenous Australian carers.The average age of Indigenous Australian carers was 37 years; 12 years less than the average age of non-Indigenous Australian carers. This may reflect higher birth rates at younger ages and earlier onset of many chronic diseases for Indigenous Australians.
For more statistics, see: http://www.carersaustralia.com.au/about-carers/aboriginalandtorresstraitislandercarers/
Unpaid family carers contribute 1.9 billion hours of care in Australia, and the replacement value of the unpaid care provided in 2015 was $60.3 billion – more than $1 billion per week.
Carers Queensland RAP
Carers Queensland is currently in the Stretch phase of our Reconciliation Action Plan. We are committed to improving the quality of life of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander carers and to effectively continue the journey to reconciliation within Australia. To achieve this, Carers Queensland’s vision for reconciliation in to improve the health, wellbeing, resilience and financial security of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander carers and to ensure caring is a shared responsibility of family, community, business and government.
Carers Queensland is the state’s peak body advocating on behalf of Queensland’s 480,000 unpaid family carers. Go to www.carersqld.asn.au to find out more.