On 22 June the EMPL and FEMM committees of the European Parliament held a joint hearing on ‘Improving the work-life balance for formal and informal carers’. COFACE was invited as expert to present its assessment of the work-life balance package, from the angle of reconciling for family carers.
The presentation was followed by an exchange with MEPs on the current proposal for a Directive. All expert invited to the hearing were in favour of this legislative proposal introducing, among others, a carers’ leave of 5 days/year and the right to request flexible working arrangements for working carers.
COFACE Families Europe stressed the importance of these measures, as they will have a direct and important impact on the lives of many families in the EU. Moreover, COFACE insisted on the importance of the provision of quality, accessible and affordable care services for persons with disabilities and older family members, because only the availability of all these measures (services, leaves, flexible work) will enable working carers to stay in employment but also be present to care for their family members in need of care and support. Finally, the ongoing survey to collect first hand voices of family carers was presented: are you a family carer? Let us know what you think!