Chamberlain’s Carer’s Leave Bill getting widespread support

The Carer’s Leave Bill, a Private Members’ Bill brought forward by Wendy Chamberlain, Scottish Liberal Democrat deputy leader, aims to introduce a new right for employees with caring responsibilities of up to one week of unpaid carer’s leave annually. The bill will receive its second reading on 9 September.

As reported by the Independent and several other media outlets, the right to leave is getting widespread support from MPs, businesses and charities. The bill will give unpaid carers the flexibility to attend routine hospital appointments or help the person they care for recover from a planned operation. There is hope that such flexibility will allow carers to continue at work rather than being forced to give up their jobs.

Chamberlain said:

A right to carer’s leave would relieve some of the pressure on millions of people up and down the country juggling paid employment with unpaid care for a family member or friend.

It would give them flexibility to attend routine hospital appointments, for example, or help the person they care for recover from a planned operation.

Sadly, more than half of employees with caring responsibilities do not currently have access to carer’s leave to enable them to support their loved ones in this way.

Carer’s leave also brings significant benefits for employers, through lower recruitment and retention costs, as well as better staff planning and engagement. It will help to keep many more skilled people – the majority of whom are women – in work and contributing to our economy.

Helen Walker, chief executive of Carers UK, said:

We are delighted Wendy Chamberlain MP has brought forward the Carer’s Leave Bill. With huge swathes of the working population now juggling their job and caring for a loved one, there has never been a more important time to introduce carer’s leave.

Our research shows us that every day in the UK at least 600 carers make the difficult decision to leave the workforce because it becomes too much – a decision made at a great personal cost, as well as at a detriment to the economy.

* Newshound: bringing you the best Lib Dem commentary in print, on air or online.

Read more by or more about , or .
This entry was posted in News.


  • Neil James Sandison 30th Aug '22 - 1:21pm

    A good social democratic principle to enshrine a right into law which makes it more difficult to remove by future governments .

  • This is important stuff. Many decent employers already offer this, and one week doesn’t seem that much when compared with the challenges of caring responsibilities, but it’s realistic for smaller businesses and provides a firm base for future enhancements.

    As the piece says, it’s actually good for business as it will make it easier to retain staff, and allows for better planning. If a person with caring responsibilities knows they have the comfort of an optional additional one week of unpaid leave they won’t feel the pressure to postpone booking annual leave until the last minute etc.

  • Helen Dudden 31st Aug '22 - 11:17am

    Life is not all plain sailing, this makes sense.

Post a Comment

Lib Dem Voice welcomes comments from everyone but we ask you to be polite, to be on topic and to be who you say you are. You can read our comments policy in full here. Please respect it and all readers of the site.

To have your photo next to your comment please signup your email address with Gravatar.

Your email is never published. Required fields are marked *

Please complete the name of this site, Liberal Democrat ...?


Recent Comments

  • Ewan Hoyle Video here too....
  • Ewan Hoyle
    The attached video shows how to restrict Labour’s gains while ensuring Conservative defeat, and also how to push PR up the agenda and deliver influence to the...
  • James Baillie
    I of course largely agree with Sandy's comment above. Re what Tristan said - I don't disagree with you that we need to shift Tory voters, as someone who grew...
  • Tom
    Yue He - I echo what others have said. It would be a crying shame if someone thought that they couldn’t be involved in our party or our parliament because of ...
  • Bob Hale
    Keep going Yue He. Your obvious enthusiasm will get you there!...