As a carer, it can be hard to juggle the demands of caring with work responsibilities. You may feel pulled in two directions. This page provides details of some options which can help you.
Support for carers who are in work
Every member of staff has the legal right to ask their employer for flexible working. There are several options that may be available, making it easier for you to balance your caring responsibilities with your job. You must have worked for the same employer for 26 weeks to be eligible.
Flexible working options can include:
- flexitime – allows working hours to be arranged to meet the needs of the business, and to enable you to adjust your working hours
- part-time working – working fewer hours in order to provide care (or for other reasons)
- job-share – more than one employee sharing a full-time workload on a part-time basis
- home working – enabling you to work from home using email, internet, fax or telephone
- parental leave – parents may be able to take unpaid leave to look after their children – see Gov.uk: parental leave
- compressed working hours – working normal hours over fewer days
- term-time working – taking paid or unpaid leave during school holidays
- compassionate leave – a reasonable amount of unpaid time off, to deal with unforeseen matters and emergencies involving a dependant, including leave to arrange or attend a funeral
Employers may not offer all of these solutions – check with your employer.
For more information on statutory employment rights, you can call the Carers UK advice line on 0808 808 7777.
Support for carers not in work
You may be able to get help to move into work from Jobcentre Plus’ Work Preparation Support for Carers programme. This includes access to training and advice on job hunting and applications. Carers can also get extra support such as help with the cost of care while attending interviews or training. Contact your local Jobcentre Plus to find out more.
If you are aged 16-24 years and are not in education, employment, or training, DurhamWorks can give you information, support, and guidance that will help you find opportunities near to you.
Durham County Council’s Benefits advice or help with benefits appeal service offers advice on starting work and the benefits and credits that can help you back into work.