Employees forced to use sick leave for care - Mitrefinch - Mitrefinch

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Employees forced to use sick leave for care

Published: September 22, 2016

Many employees are having to use their annual and sick leave to care for elderly relatives, reveals a new survey.

A study by benefits provider Willis PMI Group concluded 16 per cent of workers have to take time off because of caring duties, with 39 per cent of these using their annual leave to do so, while 34 per cent use sick leave and 32 per cent are granted compassionate leave.

The survey of 1,000 British workers found just 21 per cent of those taking time off work because of caring responsibilities were granted flexible working arrangements to do so.

Research earlier in the year from CIPD and Westfield Health concluded only one in three companies currently have a formal or informal policy in place to support workers.

Willis PMI Group director Mike Blake said: “An ageing workforce poses a number of significant challenges for UK business. Already, 30 per cent of the country’s workforce is over the age of 50, meaning many will find themselves needing to juggle work with the responsibility of caring for an elderly relative, often a parent.

“Often, employees will find it difficult to ask for help and may try to continue working as if nothing is wrong, which is why it is important for businesses to ensure the appropriate support is in place to avoid an impact on sickness absence.”

Mitrefinch provides software that is perfect for employees on different schedules, as well as supporting flexible working patterns and tracking leave.

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