Lexi Balmuth Presents Poster on Working Caregiver Benefits for the Work and Family Research Network

by Adam Felts

Working family caregivers deal with the challenging situation of balancing their careers with their caregiving responsibilities. According to AARP, 61% of unpaid family caregivers reported that caregiving has led to some impact or change to their work. But employers can help their caregiving employees by providing benefits and flexibilities that help them to balance their work and care.

An AgeLab poster presentation by Lexi Balmuth for the 2022 Work and Family Research Network Conference discusses findings from a survey of working family caregivers on their perceptions of their employer benefits.

A substantial number of respondents reported that their employment situation was disrupted by their caregiving, and nearly half the sample wanted support from their employers when it came to balancing work and caregiving. Notably, caregivers who reported that their employer did not offer any benefits for caregiving reported much lower satisfaction with their workplace than those who were offered benefits.

The most useful benefit or flexibility that respondents reported was the ability to work from home and flexible working hours – benefits that may be relatively low-cost for some employers. These flexibilities may help not only caregivers but employees in a number of situations, such as those caring for young children.

Additionally, a small but notable portion of respondents were not aware of what benefits or flexibilities that their employer offered. Employers should make sure that their employees are informed about the benefits that are available to them—or else they will go unused.

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About the Author

Photo of Adam Felts
Adam Felts

Adam Felts is a researcher and writer at the MIT AgeLab. Currently he is involved in research on the experiences of family caregivers and the future of financial advice. He also manages the AgeLab blog and newsletter. He received his Master's in Fine Arts in Creative Writing from Boston University in 2014 and his Master's of Theological Studies from Boston University in 2019.

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