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Employers for Caregivers Plan takes a baby step forward

Employers for Caregivers Plan takes a baby step forward


Hey caregivers: Want to keep working past retirement? Of course you do, and so do your employers. The Government of Canada has convened a panel to help you do just that. Read on…

The Honourable Alice Wong, Minister of State (Seniors), announced the launch of the Canadian Employers for Caregivers Plan (CECP) at the first meeting of its newly-established Employer Panel for Caregivers.

In Economic Action Plan 2014, the Government of Canada committed to work with employers on finding cost-effective workplace practices to help informal caregivers participate as fully as possible in the labour market. The Canadian Employers for Caregivers Plan includes the establishment of the Employer Panel for Caregivers, the development of business cases analyzing the cost-benefit of existing various workplace supports and the exploration of mechanisms for sustained employer engagement in this area.

Informal care

Many employed Canadians also provide informal care to their aging parent, friend, or spouse. Yet, the demands of caregiving can create many challenges in the workplace such as conflicting working hours and flexibility required for emergencies.

According to Gloria Galloway in The Globe and Mail: “International experience has shown that the introduction of flexible arrangements including job sharing, teleworking and compressed work weeks can go a long way to convince workers who are also caregivers to put off retirement for a few more years.”

The Employer Panel for Caregivers is comprised of industry leaders from small, medium and large-sized businesses, as well as expert advisors on caregiving. They will consult with employers across Canada to help identify successful and promising workplace practices that support caregivers who are balancing their work responsibilities with caring for a loved one ensuring a stronger workforce and more prosperous economy.

Quick Facts

  • The Panel is chaired by Kim Forgues (Home Depot Canada), and includes Panel members:
    • Lucie Chagnon (Median Solutions)
    • Rachelle Gagnon (Assumption Life Insurance)
    • Sharene Herdman (Johnson & Johnson Inc. Canada)
    • Caterina Sanders (Habanero Consulting Group)
    • Stephen Shea (Ernst and Young LLP)
  • Expert advisors to the Panel are:
    • Vickie Cammack (Founder, Tyze Personal Networks)
    • Janice Keefe (Nova Scotia Centre on Aging, Mount Saint Vincent University).
  • Caregiving refers to unpaid care provided to a family member or friend due to chronic or long-term illness, disability or aging and does not include short-term care for minor illnesses such as colds or flu, or everyday caring for children, etc.

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