The role of employers
More than ever the Covid-19 pandemic has shone a light on the important role of carers. Many have taken on caring roles for the first time, whilst those who’ve been caring for a while have faced greater challenges and pressures than ever before. Employers have needed to adapt, and many have had little choice in recognising the caring responsibilities undertaken by their own employees (whether it be childcare or caring roles). For working carers, they’ve been calling out for much-needed support and it’s important that when the dust does settle, working carers are not forgotten and are supported to stay in work.
A supportive employer/line manager has been identified by working carers as a key intervention to help them remain in work. Carers UK’s 2019 survey found it was one of the top three interventions, alongside flexible working and additional paid care leave.
We’ve heard time and again how one supportive line manager can make all the difference.
I’ve worked for my employer for 21 years. I’ve had different experiences with different managers. It’s luck if you get an understanding manager; I don’t think it’s organisation-wide. When I cared for my dad and something urgent came up, my manager would tell me to go home instantly. He would say “It doesn’t matter, just go home, you’re needed.” All the little words of comfort matter and mean something at the time. It’s a hard enough battle being a carer, you can then have another battle with your manager. (Beverley, Cale Green)
How can Signpost help?
As part of the Work With Us project, we want to support employers of all sizes in Stockport to become more carer-friendly and showcase those that are already supporting the carers in their workforce.
Our Work With Us Co-ordinator is available to:
- Offer advice and guidance on your internal support for carers such as: carers policies, carers leave, carer passports, setting up carers networks, carers champions etc
- Review recruitment procedures, including job applications and interview processes, to ensure carers and former carers are not prevented from applying for roles or from being offered roles
- Recommend resources and external support
- Hold stalls and information points in the workplace
- Provide staff training sessions
- Support your working carers by offering guidance and linking them to Signpost’s wellbeing support
- Offer Carer’s Assessments for working carers – both over the phone and face to face in the workplace
We will be developing a number of resources to assist employers in their journey to becoming more carer-friendly. In the meantime, a number of existing resources can be found on the resources page.
Get in touch
To get involved in the Work With Us project, contact the Work With Us Co-ordinator, Rebecca, by email at Rebecca@signpostforcarers.org.uk or call 0161 442 0442 (office) 07387 414355 (mobile).
Connect with Signpost on LinkedIn where we post regularly about the project and update with relevant news.
A number of employers in Stockport also support Signpost via fundraising activities and by offering discounts on services to carers through our Connecting Carers Card. Read more about corporate support here.