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Women carers in pension crisis

3rd November 2005

Many women carers of sick, elderly and disabled relatives are missing out on full state pensions because they do not earn enough in mainstream employment, a report from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWPs) has shown.

The 'Women and Pension' report says there are some women who are working outside of traditional employment helping care for friends or relatives who will not receive an adequate pension because caring work is not properly rewarded.

Emily Holzhausen, public affairs manager for Carers UK told Black Britain, that the report also sets out the problems that black women face when setting up pensions.

"We're talking about people that look after their elderly, sick and disabled relatives, and we tend to find that people from black communities quite often are less likely to work," she said.

Ms Holzhausen said that black women who care for relatives are less likely to be in work, so they are less likely to be able to build up pensions entitlement in the future.

She suggested that the government take a look at groups like carers and black carers and look at the "root causes" of poverty in retirement.

"So for black carers it would be the lack of appropriate care services, which means you can't go out and get a job," she explained.