Did you know that 5 million people in the UK are juggling caring responsibilities with work – that’s 1 in 7 of the workforce? However, the significant demands of caring mean that 600 people give up work every day to care for an older or disabled relative. (source Carers UK 2019)
It may feel as though your world has been turned upside down when you take on a caring role for a friend or relative. Caring can be unpredictable, it can happen overnight and often cannot be planned and work is important for well-being, income and to keep social contacts.
As a working Carer you may need support at work and often different levels of support at different times. You may find that the best or only way to manage your work and caring responsibilities is to change your work arrangements. You may also need to take leave at short notice for emergencies. Employers may also be able to offer additional flexibility through their own policies and procedures. Click here for the latest flexible working guide
Flexible working patterns can allow employees to manage both work and their caring responsibilities. Flexible working could include:
- Flexible starting and finishing hours
- Working from home
- Compressed working hours e.g. work a 35 hour week over four days instead of five
- Term-time working
- Job sharing and part time working
If you are thinking of leaving work, consider whether or not you really want to, and if not, what may help you stay in work.
First think about the things you would be giving up, and whether you really want to lose them
- will you manage with less money?
- do you want to give up the independence and social contact you have through your work?
- will you lose valuable skills if you leave?
- how would leaving work affect your future pension entitlement?
Then, think about ways around the problem, could you
- make a request for flexible working?
- take a career break?
- ask for extra help from social services?
- buy in care?
Remember that employers value skilled, experienced and committed members of staff and are keen to keep them. Your employer may be able to help in ways you have not considered. Talk to them about your situation.
Remember, you can request a Carers’ Needs Assessment to see what support is available. Call us on 01472 242277.
If you would like more information about support for working Carers or the Employers and Carers free digital resources, please give us a call on 01472 242277.
Employers for Carers
Employers for Carers is a free resource for Carers and Employers. It contains a wealth of resources, information and advice.
Carers and Employers in North East Lincolnshire can sign up to the resource completely free using the codes below.
The resource provides useful practical resources for employers, aimed at helping employers support working Carers and retain Carers on their workforce.
For Carers, the resource gives you all the information you need, from requesting flexible working to your rights as a Carer and the support available to you from local and national organisations such as the Carers’ Support Service.
Here are some examples of the resources you will find: