Plans to bring about specific legislation that will promote, defend and extend the rights of carers and young carers were announced by First Minister Alex Salmond.

A widespread consultation on this new legislation for carers and young carers will start before the end of this year. This marks a significant step forward in recognising and addressing the needs of the 657,000 unpaid adult carers and up to 100,000 young carers who care for their families, friends and neighbours.

Falkirk West MSP Michael Matheson also attended the event at the 2nd annual Carers’ Parliament in Edinburgh said:

“This Scottish Government recognises the vital role that carers play in looking after the most vulnerable in society. I know from my many discussions at the Carers Centre in Falkirk that being an unpaid carer can be a difficult and isolating experience and we should want to do all that we can to make sure we are doing everything within our powers to help carers in Scotland.

“Progress is being made including the setting up of events such as the Carers’ Parliament and the Young Carers Festival which is giving carers a voice and an important platform to raise and discuss issues of concern.

“However, more must be done to ensure carers are supported properly and are fully involved in decisions affecting their lives and those they care for. Therefore I am delighted that the Scottish Government will consult on legislation to support carers and young carers. The consultation period will start before the end of the year and I would encourage all those who are interested or affected in the Falkirk area to feed into the consultation process.”