Grassroots group aims to tackle domiciliary care worker challenges

Homecare Workers Group founder Rachel Kelso

A grassroots support network for home care workers has been launched to help tackle recruitment and retention challenges.

The Homecare Workers’ Group is a grassroots initiative that aims to benefit England’s 625,000 domiciliary care workers and their employers by securing a sustained increase in central government funding for state-funded social care.

Founder, Nottingham domiciliary care worker, Rachel Kelso, said: “There is so much to be gained in terms of both quality of care and staff retention when home care workers are able to communicate properly with one another, as opposed to simply leaving short instructions for the next carer in visit notes.

“There are often many decades of expertise to be shared among any given team. Whilst some employers do provide opportunities for meaningful contact between home care colleagues, often this is not the case, and where it is, employees may feel reluctant to speak freely if the contact is mediated by their employer, particularly where zero-hours contracts are involved.”

The Homecare Workers’ Group currently runs fortnightly online meetups for domiciliary care workers in England, with a small but growing membership base. 

Sarah Peach, director of Respectful Care, who is backing the group’s mission, said: “I am really passionate about looking after carers and ensuring they get the wages they deserve because it’s a hard job. We really support what Rachel is trying to do. It’s about home care workers getting more credit for the work they do. It’s a really important job to look after people in their own homes.”

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