How can HR Managers Support Employees who have Children with Disabilities?
Taking care of children is a tough job as it is. They require attention and care throughout the day and working parents with children can have a challenging time balancing their work and family life. This problem is alleviated for parents if their children are disabled. Since children with disabilities require exceptional care, it is stressful for employed parents to look after them and be committed to work at the same time.
Due to these parental roles, employees are unable to keep up with their working hours and the expected quality of work. Furthermore, limited work benefits, inflexible healthcare services, expensive childcare services make things worse for parents in the UK.
How can employers/managers support employees who have children with disabilities
Establish formal reporting channels for employees to share their needs
Managers should set up formal reporting channels in the workplace to encourage employees who have disabled children to talk about their needs.
Use flexible work strategies for employed parents of children with disabilities (CWD)
Managers/employers should make use of flexible work strategies to ensure that employees with disabled children get enough working hours whilst caring for their children.
Show support towards employees to improve their well-being and commitment
Numerous studies show that employees who receive higher level of support from their supervisors, are more likely to improve their well-being which in turn improves their commitment towards the organisation and their performance.
Encourage workplace support through other employees
Managers should aim to foster a workplace culture that encourages workers to help one another during difficult times. Employees with disabled kids benefit greatly from peer support in order to stay stable and avoid mental health issues.
Personalized career guidance
Employers need to balance company demands while providing parent caregivers with appropriate support to accomplish their work objectives without jeopardising their duties to their child/children, easing the emotional anxiety most of them are enduring.
Provide Additional aid
Paid leaves, support groups, and a review of the scope of flexible benefits and incentives to incorporate features that carers might find beneficial are all options that can be considered by employers to further support caregiver employees.
Employee Assistance Services and counselling options should be promoted often to make the workplace more supportive of parent caregivers.
Offer Health Savings Accounts for employees
Health savings accounts may be a strong tool for helping employees save healthcare expenditures in retirement. They are highly relevant for employees with impairments or employees who have children with disabilities, who may face higher-than-average prescription medication expenditures throughout their retirement years.
Provide protection to employees
Employers should give disability insurance to employees who have children with disabilities so that they may prepare for their own retirement and their children can live comfortably for the rest of their lives.
Companies can also pay for the additional coverage because it is a minor cost for them.
Support employees in selecting benefits
Most employees spend a significant amount of their time thinking about retirement and health insurance, ignorant to the rest of the benefits available to them. For this reason, managers should provide employees, especially, the ones with disabled children, with constant support in the form of seminars, lectures, one-on-one meetings, etc.
This can help employees in selecting benefits that are crucial to them, rather than blindly following the crowd.
There are many ways for HR managers to support employees who are parents to children with disabilities. Without the support of their managers and their peers, employees with disabled children can suffer from various health problems like anxiety and depression due to the challenges faced at home. This can lead to low motivation and a decrease in productivity in the workplace.
Thus, ensuring that these employees get the support they need, not only helps in boosting their morale and work ethic but also helps in maintaining the overall productivity of the workplace and achieving organisational goals.