Being the largest ‘foster friendly employer,’ John Lewis announces a foster carer extra paid leaves. This flexibility is available to the employees of the department store and supermarket in Waitrose.
By implementing its updated policy, John Lewis is all set to create a vast difference in the Fostering Network.
According to the statistics, there is a significant net decrease in the UK’s fostering capacity. During the year 2021 to 2022, the state received 8,280 foster carer applicants. Unfortunately, this figure was 21% lower than the previous year. If this deficit will continue, 25,000 families in England alone will be devoid of foster carers by the year 2026.
Moreover, this withdrawal from the foster carer duty is the reflex of low wages and high taxes. Following this, UK citizens have filed a petition for tax exemption and an increment in the minimum foster carer’s wage.
In this scenario, John Lewis steps forward to offer some flexibility for employees also working as foster carers. Hence, those employees will get additional paid leaves to undertake different training and do foster carers’ jobs.
Analyzing the current statistics, John Lewis understands the current and future situation. Also, seven months ago, the retailer brand launched a program ‘Building Happier Future’ to strengthen the care program.
John Lewis Partnership chair Dame Sharon White said: “They will now qualify for an additional week of paid leave, meaning they will have more flexibility – attending appointments or undertaking training.
“There is a national shortage of foster carers, leaving many children without a stable background and unable to fulfill their potential. We are delighted to be playing our part to support foster carers as part of a broader program of helping care experienced young people to get access to jobs and training in the partnership.”