§ Tim Loughton
To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what percentage of young carers have been assessed for their ability to provide for the person they care for; 
(2) what measures have been taken since January 2002 to improve the conditions of young carers. 
§ Jacqui Smith
Young carers are assessed in line with the "Framework for the Assessment of Children in Need and their Families", in the same way as other potential children in need. The Government's aim is to ensure that young carers are not expected to carry inappropriate levels of caring with emphasis on helping the family as a whole, rather than focussing exclusively on the needs of individuals within it, whether these be disabled adults or young carers.
The Carers Grant, worth £100 million in 2003–04, provides money for local councils to help carers which can include providing short breaks to support them in their caring role. Following my right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State's announcement in July 2002, the Grant will continue until 2006, during which time it will more than double to £185 million to provide extended care and 130,000 further breaks to carers.
In addition, we are supporting the development of over 100 young carers' projects across the country to give carers of school age access to appropriate advice, information and support or leisure.