The role of carer touches many. Today we know that:
- 3 million people in the UK juggle paid work with unpaid caring responsibilities – 1 in 9 people in any workforce (Employers for Carers)
- 27% of University of Leeds staff have declared they have a caring responsibility (if you wish to check and update your equality information you can do so through the University of Leeds Employee or Manager Self Service).
Support available at the University of Leeds
The University is committed to supporting the increasing number of working carers who have caring responsibilities for either one or more children, one or more disabled children, a relative or family member. If left unsupported, the impact of being a working carer can lead to isolation or burnout for the individual, and lower productivity, higher absenteeism or higher rates of turnover amongst staff.
If you are a member of staff who has caring responsibilities the University has a range of support available to help;
- Line managers, who play a vital role in supporting working carers through open communication, understanding and flexibility;
- Local University HR teams, who can provide advice on policy and explore appropriate options for working arrangements with carers and line managers;
- University policy Time off for Carers and Domestic Reasons
- University Flexible Working Policy and other Working Lives policies
- University Career Breaks Policy
- The University’s Bright Beginnings Childcare Centre offers high quality childcare to students and staff members at the University.
- Occupational Health
- Staff Counselling and Psychological Support Service
- Mental Health and Wellbeing support
- Other University Support Services
Carers Leeds is an independent charity which aims to improve the lives of unpaid carers in the city.
- You can contact their advice service to access a wide range of practical advice, support and information for working carers. Contact 0113 380 4300: Mon – Fri 9am – 5pm. You can also e-mail the advice line – firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Carers who don’t already have a social worker or other Adult Social Care staff member involved with the family, can ask for a local council carers assessment by contacting the Carers Leeds Advice Line on 0113 380 4300, available Monday to Friday, 9am – 5pm. Carers have a legal entitlement to a carers assessment even if the person they care for doesn’t want or need services themselves.
- Carers Leeds provide advice about support in the workplace and information about retaining life-balance.
- Carers UK are the UK’s national charity for carers and the free Carers UK Digital Resources provide comprehensive information and support for carers. Line managers can access resources to help support working carers including; guides, e-Learning, best practice examples, templates, and case studies. Working carers can access the Carers UK’s care co-ordination app and many useful guides including the Carers Rights Guide and A self-advocacy Guide for Carers. Contact email@example.com for further details about how to access the Carers UK free Digital Resources.
- There is also a Carers UK free to access e-learning course for carers to help build strategies to maintain physical and emotional wellbeing.
- This Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) video-based resource is designed to help people look after someone safely at home.
- Writing a contingency plan can help carers think about the different ways and different people that can help if they are unable to look after the person they normally care for due to illness or an emergency. The West Yorkshire and Harrogate Healthcare Partnership Plan B template form is available to download from their website.
- Leeds Directory is Leeds City Council’s online source of information to help people live well and as independently as possible. There are over 1,700 organisations and services listed on the directory including, home and garden maintenance; equipment to help with daily living tasks such as cooking or getting washed and dressed; home care; and home security.
- The Leeds Local Offer publishes information to help families access clear information about services for those aged 0-25 with learning disabilities and to explain what support families are entitled to and can expect from services.
- The Leeds and York Partnership Foundation NHS Trust have put together a Guide for people are who are caring for someone with dementia at home (PDF).
- Information from Leeds City Council about arranging short breaks and respite for carers.