Carers UK Research: More than 600 people quit work every day to look after older and disabled relatives

A report launched this week by Carers UK reveals that more than 600 people quit paid work to look after older, sick and disabled relatives every day.

The report also indicates that:

  • 1 in 7 of the UK workforce are caring for at least one loved one.
  • Nearly half a million (468,000) have left their job in the last two years alone, to care for someone.
  • This is a 12% increase since Carers UK and YouGov polled the public in 2013.
  • 5 million workers are now juggling their paid job with caring – a dramatic rise compared with Census 2011 figures of 3 million.

The research emphasises the need for UK employers to support the rapidly increasing number of staff with caring responsibilities to stay in the workforce. The report recommends better employment rights including five to 10 days paid care leave.

As well as calling for new workplace rights, Carers UK is also urging the Government to put in place sustainable funding for social care – recognising care services as a key enabler for people to remain in work.

The full report, called ‘Juggling Work and Unpaid Care, a growing issue’ can be read online here.

Fiona Malpas, Project Manager – Employment Support, Carers Support Centre, says, “Our team have seen a significant increase in carers struggling to juggle work whilst caring. This has led to working carers either being off sick from work, or forced to resign their job altogether, impacting emotional wellbeing and financial stability. Businesses need to have better carer awareness in the workplace, and introduce carer friendly policies that support and retain their caring workforce.”