The NSW government is encouraging organisations to become accredited as a carer friendly workplace under a program run by the state’s peak body for unpaid carers.

Gareth Ward

The Carers and Employers program, an initiative of Carers NSW funded by the state government, provides resources and training to help workplaces in both the public and private sector support the needs of carers.

It enables employers to work their way through three levels of accreditation from “activate” to “commit” and “excel”.

Accreditation lasts two years and costs between $400 and $3500 depending on level of accreditation and size of the organisation.

Carers NSW CEO Elena Katrakis says having flexible working hours, dedicated paid leave, remote working arrangements and career breaks are all measures that can make a workplace carer-friendly.

“This initiative is about raising awareness about the number of carers in our community and ensuring organisations have the skills and knowledge to support them,” she said.

Organisations that have gained accreditation so far include Macquarie Group, Royal Perth Bentley Group, Sydney Local Health District, NSW Communities and Justice, the University of Technology Sydney and Suncorp.

Families, communities and disability service Minister Gareth Ward has urged employers to sign up.

“We want to raise awareness about the services and support that’s available to help support carers, and would encourage organisations to get in contact with us to find out what’s on offer,” he said in a statement.

An estimated 850,000 people across NSW provide unpaid care.

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