EOC welcomes ‘historic breakthrough’ on flexible working

The
Government’s commitment to introducing flexible working for carers marks a historic
breakthrough in progress towards a society in which families matter, according
to Julie Mellor, chair of the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC).

Mellor
said: "This will be a massively popular policy. A recent EOC survey found
overwhelming support for the extension of flexible working to more people. By
making this commitment the Government has proved that it really does listen to
what people say.

"Nearly
one in five carers has had to give up or turn down a job opportunity because of
their caring responsibilities. Giving them the right to request flexible
working recognises that they face many similar challenges to those faced by
working parents. It will give those who want to work a far greater chance of
being able to do so, boosting their quality of life and also enabling them to
contribute to the success of the British economy," she said.

"The
reality is that, with an ageing population, most of us will at some point have
to balance our job with  caring for
children, or for ill, older or disabled relatives. A quarter of carers have
dependent children too."

By
Quentin Reade

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