Community Services Minister Mary Wooldridge today welcomed the passage through the Victorian Parliament of legislation recognising and valuing the role of carers and care relationships.
"Today is a significant occasion for carers and those in care relationships as we welcome the passage of the Carers Recognition Bill 2012," Ms Wooldridge said.
The legislation requires government and funded agencies to reflect the care relationship principles in the operation of their business, and report annually on the actions they have taken to comply with the principles.
Ms Wooldridge said the new legislation brings Victoria's recognition of carers into line with other states and territories and the Commonwealth.
"This legislation provides acknowledgement to carers and recognises the contribution they make to the Victorian community," Ms Wooldridge said.
"Carers and the people they care for are in a shared arrangement and if the care relationship is strong, the carer and the person being cared for will have a better life."
The Bill recognises young carers, kinship and foster carers, and people providing support and assistance for someone with a mental or chronic illness, as well as those supporting ageing parents, the frail aged, or a person with a disability.
The legislation raises the status of carers and care relationships in the community and sets out principles recognising carers for their contribution.
"For the first time, Victoria will have legislation that sets out clear expectations for organisations that engage with people in care relationships about how they should be treated," Ms Wooldridge said.
The Victorian Charter Supporting People in Care Relationships will be updated to reflect the new legislation and will support implementation of the Bill.