Employers urged to join us on Carers Rights Day – Dorset Council news

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Employers are encouraged to join the council in adopting guidance to support employees who are also carers, as we approach Carers Rights Day this Thursday (24 November).

man sat at desk at home with a laptop and carers rights day logoWith one in seven of the UK workforce having caring responsibilities for family or friends on top of their job, we are strengthening our support to carers to help retain our valued employees and maintain vital support for some of our most vulnerable residents.
Carers provide unpaid practical and or emotional support to a friend or family member who due to illness, disability, mental ill health, or addiction, could not cope without their support. Without support this can lead to mental and physical fatigue, poor physical health, strain on personal and social relationships, financial worries, anxiety and depression for the person providing care.
Carers who work already have legal rights including time off for unexpected problems with the person they care for, to request flexible working if they have worked for their employer for 26 consecutive weeks, and not to be discriminated against as a result of their caring role and association with a disabled person.
In addition to actively supporting these legal rights, we have developed the new guidance with our network of employees who are carers, to grow understanding of caring roles, to help managers have honest conversations with employees who are carers, and to ensure employees understand the support available.
Cllr Peter Wharf, Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Adult Social Care and Heath, said: “Carers play a vital role in helping people maintain a more independent life, with care where they need it. Eleven per cent of our residents are already carers and, while caring responsibilities cross all ages, many more working age people will take on this responsibility as our population gets older. This new guidance is one way we can start to future proof our organisation as Dorset’s demographic evolves.”
Cllr Jill Haynes, Portfolio Holder for Corporate Development and Transformation, said: “It is vital as an employer of choice, we recognise the pressures our people face outside their job with us. This new guidance builds on our long-standing commitment to valuing and retaining our employees and I urge other employers to explore how they too can support their employees who are carers and our wider communities.”
Download our Good Practice Guidance for Supporting Employees who are Carers.
All people who provide care for others unpaid, are urged to register with Carer Support Dorset, a service commissioned by Dorset Council to help carers access services, information, education and training, and respite from their caring role.  Visit the Carer Support Dorset website or freephone 0800 368 8349.
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