Bosses should be offering more childcare support, say Scots staff

Balancing work and childcare hits parents’ health and wellbeing

More than a third of Scottish parents (35%) claim balancing childcare responsibilities with work has negatively impacted their health or mental wellbeing, research has revealed.
In a study of 1,123 workers by Willis Towers Watson, only 25% of Scottish workers said their employer currently offers childcare support or benefits. Furthermore, 29% said their employers fails to pay maternity or paternity leave above the statutory minimum.
Director, Willis Towers Health & Benefits, Mike Blake said: “Although the government’s new Tax-Free Childcare scheme may be helping to address the financial burden, this is just one piece of the jigsaw.
“For some parents, additional benefits such as further financial support, access to a workplace nursery or provision of flexible working practices, may prove invaluable.”
The right to request flexible working was extended from parents and carers to all employees with 26 weeks’ or more continuous service in June 2014. Requests can still be turned down however if they have been addressed by the employer in a “reasonable manner”.
According to more than a third of Scottish workers (34%), not enough is being done and employers should be offering more childcare support. Blake has pointed out that doing so can make good business sense.
He said: “Supporting working parents can have a positive impact for organisations in a number of key areas,” he said.
“By looking after their financial and emotional wellbeing, incidents of sickness absence can be reduced and productivity can be increased through improved levels of motivation and engagement. Furthermore, support for this important workforce demographic can reinforce an organisation’s reputation as an employer of choice and, in turn, help boost recruitment and retention.”
Scotland B2B’s HR & Employment Law pages are supported by Thornber HR Law based in Dunfermline – specialising in employment law for businesses and individuals 
Sponsored by