Senate proposes leave benefits for palliative care

Care for aging loved ones likely to eclipse child care as the pressing issue.
By David Brown
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 04/12/2001

Canadian businesses can expect a dramatic spike in the numbers of employees who need time to provide care and support for their elderly baby boomer parents. And an aging population invariably means more people caring for dying loved ones.

In response, Canadian employees should be given palliative care leave benefits, akin to parental leave, to care for loved ones in need of full-time care as they approach death, according to recommendations from a senate subcommittee.

The government may have to legislate income security and job protection for employees who are attempting to balance work while trying to provide care for dying loved ones because employers are not doing enough to help employees cope with this difficult task, said Senator Sharon Carstairs, chair of the senate subcommittee to update “Of Life and Death,” a 1995 report that made recommendations regarding palliative care.