Carers who do overnight sleep-in shifts will see a change to how they are paid, following clarification from the government.
Previously, carers were paid an allowance (typically, around £30 for a shift from 11pm to 7am). Now the government has confirmed that sleep-in shifts should be counted in working time, so carers should be paid an hourly rate of at least the minimum wage.
This is good news for carers, as it will inevitably result in an increase in their wages. At 24-7 Staffing, we have always ensured our Carers are paid at least the living wage (which is above the minimum wage) for all their shifts, including sleep-ins, to reflect the important work they do in supporting elderly and vulnerable people in our communities.
However, the government’s clarification is likely to cause difficulties for care homes and some charities, which have been used to paying a set sleep-in rate, and for other recruitment agency who haven’t been as forward-thinking as we are here at 24-7 Staffing.
Even more significantly, the government has said that under its Social Care Compliance Scheme workers can claim underpayment dating back as far as six years. This is worrying for the care sector, as it could put the future of some care homes in jeopardy. The knock-on effect could even be a shortage of care home places across the UK.
We have huge sympathy for the care homes and charities which may be adversely affected by this ruling. At the same time, it is important for carers to be fairly remunerated, as they are with us at 24-7 Staffing.
If you are a care worker looking for opportunities, or would like to talk us about getting into care, please contact the team here at 24-7 Staffing.