Governments strategy is good news for carers who work

A leading carers campaigning group has backed the employment aspects of the Governments Carers Strategy.

Carer’s UK, which pushes for more rights for carers, said it was pleased with a number of strands to the strategy, including employment.

The strategy does take on board our advice and recommendations, says Imelda Redmond, chief executive of Carers UK. The pledge to help carers access work, through reforms to Jobcentre Plus, will benefit many who wish to work, and the two million people who cease caring duties each year. These people will get more support and understanding as they seek to move on with their lives.

In the Government’s strategy, revealed this week, plans were laid out to improve the lives of Britain’s army of carers, announcing it would spend £255 million to do so. Some of this amount (£38 million) will go towards supporting carers when they are re-entering the job market, including more guidance for employers. There will also be more flexible and accessible skills training under the plans, as well a major awareness raising campaign to highlight the right of carers to request flexible working.

It’s important family members caring for older or disabled people don’t have to give up their jobs, says Harriet Harman, minister for women and equality. Only 7% of people know that carers have the right to request flexible working.

HR magazine's Make Care Less Taxing campaign aims to persuade the Government to introduce a single, tax-exempt care voucher to enable employers to help staff who have caring responsibilities for elderly and disabled dependants as well as those with children.

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