Jon Cruddas has called for greater support to be provided for families affected by dementia. In a visit to the Barking and Dagenham Alzheimer society last Friday 27th March, Jon spoke to staff about the immense challenges faced by those caring for people with dementia.
With the country's population ageing over recent decades, the disease has been touching the lives of more and more families. There are now 850,000 people living with dementia in the UK, and by 2025, this will have risen to 1 million.
During his visit to the Alzheimer society, Jon discussed the particular local challenges faced by those tackling the disease in his constituency. In Dagenham and Rainham alone, there are 1,196 people living with dementia- less than half of whom have a formal diagnosis.
Following the visit Jon threw his support behind the society's campaign to improve dementia awareness:
"I can't speak highly enough of the work that's being done by our local Alzheimer society. They are leading the fight against this disease.
"I'm shocked to hear that less than half of those living with dementia in my constituency have not been formally diagnosed. As a consequence, they and their families may be missing out on the vital support that they should be receiving. The work of the Alzheimer society and organisations like them, in promoting awareness and understanding of this cruel disease is invaluable.
"I'm proud to say that the Labour Party has pledged to integrate physical health, mental health and social care services if elected in May. This will help to improve diagnosis and give people living with dementia a personal care plan and a single point of contact- making it easier for them and their families to cope."