Nearly one-third (32%) of all primary family caregivers, regardless of age, are in the labor force. About 6% of working caregivers are age 65 and older while the majority (88%) is between the ages of 25 and 64. Among primary caregivers of working age, more that half (58%) are employed and most of those employed (83%) are working full time (35 or more hours a week).1
These basic facts have serious repercussions in the workplace and for the person involved. Emergencies keep employees away from work; making arrangements for family members is often distracting; and time away costs both employer and employee money and stress. Often caregivers stop working entirely although the largest number of individuals rearrange their work schedules (39%); the next highest (21%) take leave without pay.
Caregiving affects worker productivity in important way — MetLife estimates that working caregivers cost business roughly $1.4 billion a year. If health related effects of stress were added in, costs an exceed $29 billion a year. Overall, 44% of caregivers have had a conflict between caregiving and their job responsibilities.
Surprisingly, a relatively small proportion of working caregivers have used caregiver support services. The largest percent (33%) used a service to provide temporary care to the elderly care receiver in their own home. A somewhat smaller percent (25%) modified the home of the care receiver.
What can employers do to help caregivers cope better while supporting their own bottom line? Silver Connections is here to help. We provide support to Human Resource functions, Employee Assistance Professionals as well as provide educational seminars for employees and participate in annual health fairs.
Contact us today so we can add to your employee offerings our services are provided at no additional cost to you or your employees.
Kitty Watson at 708-805-4095
Barbara Sheldon Northern Suburbs 1-224-723-8858
Diane O’Dea Chicago 1-224-723-8857
1.(Center on an Aging Society, Georgetown University, 4, August 2005).