Carer voucher scheme mooted to help staff retention


More than £80m worth of services to help carers back into employment could be generated by just £37m of government investment, a report released tomorrow (Wednesday) will claim.

Analysis by the London School of Economics claims that carer vouchers would be an effective and affordable way to bring extra funding to older and disabled people. It will be launched by the Campaign for Care Vouchers coalition at the Houses of Parliament.

The system would allow firms to pay staff with tax-free carer coupons. It would help firms retain staff with caring responsibilities – particularly older and female employees.

Caring is a major cause of early retirement, with 70% of carers under 50, and 80% of those aged 50 to 60, forced to give up work to look after people.

Charles Cotton, reward adviser at the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, said: “As we face an ageing population, which is likely to lead to many more working people with caring responsibilities over the coming decades, this modest proposal offers a real win-win for government, carers, tax payers and employers.”

Sue Jex, group head of diversity at HSBC bank, said: “Publicised well, the scheme would be an attractive proposition, with some real benefits to employers, including increased productivity, reduced absenteeism and improved staff retention and morale.”

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