Carers of elderly relatives should get time off work, says health secretary
Employees who look after their elderly parents should be allowed to work flexible hours, the Health Secretary has said.
Jeremy Hunt said employers should do more to help the hundreds of thousands of people who are struggling to balance work and care commitments.
He said it was essential businesses change their attitude to carers because of Britain’s rapidly aging population and a looming “dementia time bomb”.
He said it would cripple the economy if large numbers of experienced employees had to give up work to look after relatives.
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And he insisted those caring for elderly loved-ones should be taken as seriously by employers as new parents.
The Daily Telegraph said business leaders had voiced 'huge alarm' about the prospect of any further extension of flexible working rights.
But carers and charities welcomed the move and said that thousands of people already feel “abandoned” by their employers.
The Coalition is currently in the process of extending flexible working rights to all employees.
It comes on top of an overhaul of arrangements for new parents, allowing fathers a greater share of their partner’s maternity leave.
What do you think? Do you care for an elderly relative and would welcome flexi-working? Or are you a business owner who fears it would cripple your business? Comment below or email email@example.com