Today, Kinship has welcomed supermarket giant Tesco’s commitment to providing Special Guardians in its workforce with paid kinship care leave, on a par with adoption leave – giving them 26 weeks leave on full pay.
The kinship leave, which will apply to kinship carers who have been granted a Special Guardianship Order, is intended to help these kinship carers to be able stay in the workforce, while managing their extra responsibilities.
The new policy, which makes the grocer one of the first UK retailers to support Special Guardians, is among a raft of family-friendly policies Tesco announced that will benefit more than 300,000 colleagues from this week.
Lucy Peake, CEO of Kinship said:
“We are thrilled that Tesco is stepping up for kinship carer Special Guardians in its workforce by introducing paid kinship care leave on a par with adoption leave.
“Tesco’s new policy will make an enormous difference to many Special Guardian kinship carers across the country, who will now be able to take paid time off when to support children who have often experienced trauma and focus on their needs, knowing they will have a job to return to.
“We’re very proud to be working with Tesco as they implement this industry-leading support for Special Guardians and hope over time it can extended to all kinship carers. We urge other retailers to follow their lead and will soon be launching our Kinship Friendly Employers scheme to encourage employers of all sizes to better support kinship carers in the workforce.”
Our Kinship Friendly Employers scheme – to be launched very soon – will provide employers with all of the support they need to recognise, value and support all kinship carers in their workforce, including by providing paid kinship care leave.
In the meantime, as well as working with employers including Tesco to develop policies to better support kinship carers in the workplace, Kinship’s #ValueOurLove campaign has long called for Government to introduce statutory kinship care leave on a par with adoption leave for all kinship carers, and launched its Forced Out report in June, detailing the experienced of kinship carers at work.
We are calling on Business Minister Kevin Hollinrake MP and new Children and Families Minister David Johnston MP to introduce this as part of the upcoming National Strategy for Kinship Care, due to be launched in December.