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Caring for carers

There has been a request from the government for employers to make allowances for employees who have care responsibilities.

We know that most business owners groan whenever they hear the phrase “flexible working”, but with a little thought it really can work. Sadly, with an aging population, this is a situation that is not going to go away.

With over 850,000 people in the UK suffering from dementia it is a problem the workplace cannot ignore. While, in an ideal world, there would be 24 hour care on hand for each and every one of them, realistically this just isn’t possible or affordable.

Simple things like getting dressed in the morning can turn into tricky tasks for someone suffering with dementia if there isn’t someone there to assist. Naturally, there is the stress of worrying about the dependent, and the employee already trying to juggle work, family and care is often pushed to the limit and may end up being signed off with stress.

There are many ways employers can help. It may be as simple as allowing your employee to come in an hour later and make up the time at the end of the day. Or perhaps you’re able to work out a variable hours contract, granting more flexibility around working hours.

Other ways to show support for carers in the workplace can include sharing information about external support networks.  Or easing communication by allowing them to have their mobile phones on and available.

The end result can be beneficial for everyone involved: you get a more productive and appreciative employee, and they can manage their life better.

You can find out more about dementia by visiting the Alzheimer’s Society website.