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Views needed on Carer’s Leave

Wednesday 22nd July 2020


The government is currently running a consultation on their proposal to give working carers a week's unpaid Carer's Leave from work each year.

The consultation closes on 3 August 2020; it covers England, Wales, and Scotland only.

The introduction of Carer's Leave would be a vital step in helping people who are working alongside their caring responsibilities. It is an issue that Contact has campaigned for.

The consultation is a really important opportunity to improve the rights of working carers.

We need your help!

Please respond to the consultation and help to secure new rights for working carers.

You can access the consultation documents on gov.uk.

You can respond online https://beisgovuk.citizenspace.com/lm/carersleave

Or email a response to labourmarketparticipation@beis.gov.uk

Here are our views on some of the questions asked in the consultation

Please include them when submitting your response to the consultation if you wish to.

  • We think all working carers should have these rights from day one - i.e. as soon as you start work you would have the right to take Carer's Leave.
  • We think that the definition of caring should be really broad so that is encompasses all types of caring situations.
  • Parents of disabled children should get these extra rights too, not just people caring for adults.
  • Carers should be able to take the leave in small parts e.g. half a day or a day. This is better for carers and for employers. Having to take leave on larger chucks would not work for carers in reality.
  • Carers should have to apply for Carer's Leave at the time when they think they are going to need it, so that they don't have to come back at the end of the year - that is easier for everyone.
  • We agree that the definition of whom the carer is supporting also needs to be kept broad, so that it covers all types of caring situations e.g. LGBTQ+ people, the refugee community, etc.
  • We think that there should be a really clear process for solving disputes, e.g. if the employer and the employee don't agree on the need to take leave.

To support individuals and groups that would like to respond, our friends at Carers UK have created a briefing, which provide views on each of the proposal in the consultation [PDF].

Need advice on work, carer's benefits or other money matters?