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Create a new statutory entitlement to carer’s leave

Last updated: 01:04pm 16 May 2019

As the majority of care is informally provided, mainly by families, we will give workers a new statutory entitlement to carer’s leave, as enjoyed in other countries.

Conservative Party Manifesto 2017, p.65

Our verdict

In 2017, 5.4 million people in the UK provided informal care (not part of a paid job), with one third of adult informal carers in full-time employment. In addition, the demand for care is expected to rise due to increased life expectancy and challenging circumstances in the social care market.

As an employee with caring responsibilities, you’re entitled to take a “reasonable amount” of time off to deal with emergencies. However, it is left to employers to determine what constitutes a “reasonable amount”, and also to decide whether the time off will be paid. This policy promises to provide workers with a new statutory entitlement to carer’s leave.

In June 2018, the government published the Carers Action Plan 2018-2020, announcing that an interdepartmental working group has been established to look at dedicated employment rights for carers:

“This includes considering the crucial questions that arise around introducing dedicated employment rights with the support of analysts so that any emerging carers leave proposal is most effective.”

With a working group currently considering statutory carer’s leave, it’s fair to say this policy is ‘in progress’. It will be ‘done’ when the new statutory entitlement becomes law. Follow this policy to stay up to date.

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