5th April 2018Category: Working Carers
This week, we have chosen to highlight two positive changes the government is making for working carers in different professions. They highlight the shifts in government thinking and demonstrate that it doesn’t matter where you work, solutions can be found. The first change is within our armed forces and the second within Cabinet Office’s.
On the 8th February 2018, the Armed Forces (Flexible Working) Bill passed into law. This law allows British military personnel to apply for wider flexible working opportunities. This means that those serving in the Armed Forces will be able to apply to serve part-time for defined periods and have the ability to restrict the amount of time they spend away from their home base and families.
Applications for part-time working will be assessed against the needs of the individual and the need of the Armed Forces to maintain operational effectiveness. Personnel will still be required to deploy on operations at any time (such as a national emergency). Reserve personnel will also benefit from these changes, as they increase opportunities for them to work alongside Regular personnel.
This change will come into effect in 2019, and is part of a range of measures the Armed Forces are implementing to become more modern and diverse.
The Cabinet Office is developing a “carer’s charter” to be launched later this year. The charter will be adopted across departments such as the Ministry of Transport and the Ministry of Justice.
It builds on existing entitlements including paid special leave and unpaid career breaks as set out in departmental special leave policies, while support and counselling are offered through Employee Assistance Programmes. Carer’s networks are in place in some of the departments and others have Carers Champions. The Carer’s Passport is used throughout the departments. The Passport provides important information for new line managers so that when a working carer transfers between jobs, the information about their caring role and previous workplace arrangements follow them.
The government’s aim is to be the most inclusive employer in the UK and to act as a role model to other employers. The “carer’s charter” is one of the ways they are trying to achieve this.
These changes demonstrate that the government sees caring as an important role. Caring is something that impacts everyone in society and the government has publicly acknowledged this. Often when a government takes the lead, business follows.
Lets keep our eyes peeled and fingers crossed for local businesses following these government examples.