Princes offers double the requirement for annual care leave

By Gwen Ridler

- Last updated on GMT

Princes is offering double the UK requirement for annual care leave. Image: Getty, Tara Moore
Princes is offering double the UK requirement for annual care leave. Image: Getty, Tara Moore

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Princes is offering double the UK requirement for annual care leave in a bid to become an ‘employer of choice’ by going beyond the industry norm.

As of Saturday (6 April), the UK Government introduced the Carer’s Leave Act, which entitles employees to one week of unpaid leave every 12 months.

The manufacturer has implemented a more generous package, offering two weeks of leave instead – one paid and one unpaid. The introduction of the package followed consultation with employees who acted as carers within their own families.

This only applies to Princes colleagues in the UK. Colleagues at sites in Holland, Mauritius and Italy already have statutory provisions in place.

Recognising unpaid carers

Jennifer Gallagher, senior human resources business partner, said: “The introduction of the Carers’ Leave Act is an important step forward that recognises unpaid carers in the workplace for the first time.

“We know that many of our colleagues will benefit from this ground-breaking legislation, but as a business we felt that we should go further. Our stated ambition is to be an employer of choice and this means seeking ways to go further than the industry norm.

“The decision to provide UK colleagues with two weeks’ of care leave in a 12-month period aligns with our Colleague Value Proposition, and our determination to be a people-focussed, inclusive company.”

Under the Act, the right to take carers’ leave begins from day one of employment and can be taken by the employee to provide or arrange care for a dependant with a long-term care need.

Terms and conditions

Employees will have to give at least three days’ notice to take leave or, for a request of more than one day, double as long as the requested leave. This is separate to any emergencies that arise.

“A key part of our health and wellbeing strategy is supporting our colleagues when they need us most and we know that caring responsibilities can have a detrimental effect on a carer’s own health and wellbeing,”​ Gallagher added.

“It is also an example of how we bring our values to life in a practical way that makes a difference to the working and personal lives of our colleagues.”

Princes has announced plans to roll out several other carer-related initiatives, including a carers’ network, appointing a ‘Carers Champion’ and celebrating Carers’ Rights Day on November 23.

Meanwhile, drinks company Molson Coors has announced a new UK equal parent leave policy​ in the run up to International Women’s Day 2024.

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