#GiveMeABreak Campaign - Together for Short Lives
07 October 2020
Together for Short Lives is asking families in England to write to their local MP to ask them to contact Chancellor Rishi Sunak about funding short breaks at the Comprehensive Spending Review.
The 'Give Me a Break' report, by Together for Short Lives and Julia’s House Children’s Hospice, includes new research by Pro Bono Economics which sets out the positive impact that short breaks have. The report found that short breaks improve parents’ physical and mental health and reduce their demand for NHS care. They reduce the number of sick days parents need to take off work, leading to improved productivity and additional tax revenue. They are likely to have a positive impact on siblings and reduce the risk of parental relationships breaking up.
Existing legislation and government policy is clear that local councils in England should make sure families can access short breaks. However, the way in which short breaks are planned, funded and provided is patchy and unsustainable. Local authority funding for children’s hospices was cut by 12% in 2019/20.
Covid has added to this pressure with many families isolated during the pandemic and without access to a lot of the services they previously relied on - many families desperately need a break.