Compassionate Care leave policies provides "care for the caregivers"

New HRPA survey finds workplace compassionate care leave policies increase engagement and retention for employees caring for terminally ill loved ones.

TORONTO, Oct. 22, 2014 /CNW/ - As the population ages and more Canadians find themselves caring for dying family members, many Canadian workplaces are helping to "care for the caregivers" by implementing compassionate care leave policies that provide comfort to employees, while boosting engagement and retention at work.

A recent survey by the Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA), in partnership with the Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association, found 59% of 692 organizations polled had formal compassionate care leave policies that recognize and accommodate employees' family and dependent care responsibilities for providing end-of-life care to loved ones. As one respondent put it, "being there for your employees when they need it the most speaks volumes about your culture."

Business benefits

Providing compassionate care benefits is also good business practice according to the survey. A majority found there were clear business benefits to providing these policies, including increased employee engagement (61%) and retention (56%). And almost half (49%) said having a policy makes it easier for employees to return to work and re-integrate in the work team after caring for a loved one.

"These numbers speak to the fact that not only do compassionate care policies help employees through very difficult times, they also make good business sense," said HRPA CEO Bill Greenhalgh. "Providing accommodations for employees caring for family members at end of life is one of the ways to reduce caregiver stress and avoid burnout. Workers who are supported through situations like this are more loyal and are more likely to stay with the company."

"With the exponentially aging baby boomer population, compassionate care benefits are quickly becoming an essential aspect of organizational policy," said CHPCA Executive Director Sharon Baxter. "Employees need the reassurance that they will be secure should they need to take a temporary leave to care for and support a gravely ill family member."

For full survey details, please visit:

The compassionate care leave survey polled 692 HRPA members between June/July 2014.

The Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA) is the professional regulatory body and the professional association for Human Resources professionals in Ontario.

SOURCE: Human Resources Professionals Association of Ontario

For further information: Duff McCutcheon, Communications Specialist, Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA), 416.923.2324 x 324,; Tamir Virani, Communications Officer, Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association, 1-800-668-2785 ext. 229,


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