Chances are that during your working life, you will be a caregiver to a relative or a friend. In Minnesota, 60% of caregivers are employed—full-time or part-time.
Juggling the competing demands of work and caregiving can be challenging. Achieving work-life balance is a cooperative effort between an employee and his or her employer. Use the resources available on this website to help you find balance between work and caregiving.
For the purpose of these webpages, a caregiver is a spouse, other relative, partner or friend who provides unpaid care and assistance for a relative or friend with a health problem, a long-term illness or a disability. The person you care for may live with you, or not.
Please take time to review the employee benefits and caregiver resource links on this page. The time you spend now will be invaluable when a caregiving or other medical issue arises in your life or the life of someone to whom you give care. It will also prepare you to best support your coworkers who are caregiving.
This section provides a list of employee benefits that may apply to you when you are caregiving.
Review your employee benefits so you’re aware of what’s available. Then work with your supervisor or human resource office. Explain your situation clearly and briefly. If possible, offer suggestions for how your work responsibilities might be met.
Some other ideas:
As much as possible, arrange for needed time off in advance.
Very importantly, accept help from others, and again, suggest specific things they can do to help.
Take time for yourself and your own wellbeing and medical care.
Labor Contract-based Benefits
Sick leave (expanded in 2016)
Eldercare Leave of Absence (unpaid)
Personal Leave of Absence (unpaid)
Flexible work schedules/li>
Job sharing Lifematters Employee Assistance
Program Health insurance provider programs
Employer wellness programs
Find links to your Labor contract on the Minnesota Management and Budget website under Labor Relations:
Caring.com connects you with online support groups specific to your needs: https://www.caring.com/support-groups In-person caregiver support groups may be held in your area. Look to non-profit organizations in your community.
Family Caregiver Alliance® National Center on Caregiving
Here is information to help maintain the health and productivity of your employees while they are caregiving for a family member or friend. Please work closely with your Human Resources office and/or the SEGIP Organizational Health team to support your employees who are caregiving.
Working caregivers can be very productive at work with the proper support. Providing understanding, trust and flexibility can maintain job satisfaction, sustain productivity and lessen time away from work.
Be aware of and comply with your agency’s work-life policies.
Help employees make the most of their time, without affecting their work productivity and without giving the impression of favoritism by:
Allowing flexible schedules when possible
Not judging a leave request
Offering information on services employees may need, or referring an employee to your human resources office and/or EAP.
Promote a workplace culture that demonstrates respect for employees’ personal lives and obligations.
Some signs of caregiving stress to be aware of are emotional sensitivity, fatigue, anxiety or sadness. Also, you might notice more use of sick time and unpaid leave.