How you can get support in the workplace

Support for working carers

One in eight people in employment are also carers for a friend or family member, and over half of carers who are not working, say that they would like to.

For many carers, the workplace provides a sense of identify, independence and a break from their caring role, in addition to financial security.

Being a carer does not mean that you have to give up work, however, having caring responsibilities can make working difficult.

Carers Leeds offer support to retain life-balance as well as providing information and guidance on services that can help you remain in employment whilst providing care for a loved one.

One in five carers end their employment in order to take on caring responsibilities. If you are facing this decision, Carers Leeds can provide you with emotional support, advice on carer-related benefits and support to access opportunities to ensure you take a break and maintain your own wellbeing.

Right to flexible working
It is a good idea to think about asking your employer for flexible working rather than just giving up work altogether.  If you give up work it can have a huge impact on you financially, reduce the number of people you meet and talk to, and make it more difficult to return to work in the future.

Taking time off
As a carer, needing time off is unavoidable, for example if the person you care for falls ill or is injured, or care arrangements suddenly break down. You are allowed to take time off in an emergency involving the person you care for, this is known as ‘time off for dependants’.

Dealing with change
When there is a big change in the condition of the person you care for, your work-life can be seriously disrupted and you may recognise that you are going to have to ask for some help.

  1. Talk to your manager about getting some time off work if you need it.
  2. Talk to your manager about any adjustments to your working arrangements that might help deal with the current emergency.
  3. If your caring responsibilities are going to increase in the long term, at some point it may be worth talking to your manager about your job and the possibility of changing your working arrangements (for instance could you work at home on some days).
  4. Some large employers have a confidential welfare service, familiarise yourself with policies within your workplace.

It is beneficial to tell your employer that you are a carer, they may have carer friendly policies that help you achieve a better work/life balance.

Carers Leeds can give your employer examples of policies used in other organisations if they don’t already have one.

You can call the Advice Line if you need information about your caring situation or someone to talk to.

Carers advice line – 0113 380 4300: Mon – Fri 9am-4:30pm (8am – 6.30pm on Wed) 

You can also e-mail the advice line –

Common enquiries on the Advice Line include:

  • Finance and benefits
  • Access to services, respite, holidays
  • Assessments and personal budgets for the carer or cared for person
  • Opportunities for social contact
  • Looking after your wellbeing as a carer
  • Equipment and support for the cared for person


Carers can call in at our city centre based offices (6-8 The Headrow, LS1 6PT)

Monday – Friday 9:30-3:30.

Appointments at Carers Leeds, at your workplace or at home

An appointment can be made to see a Carer Support Worker (CSW) for one to one information and advice, for someone to talk to about caring issues.