More than half of employers rely on statutory sick pay to support absent staff

Workplace paternalism is becoming outmoded and employers now expect staff and their family members to look after themselves, according to research conducted by Group Risk Development (GRiD).

The trade association’s survey found that more than half (55%) of employers rely on state-funded statutory sick pay of £79 per week to support those on long term sick. †It also showed that 38% feel no obligation to support sick staff or their families if they die.

Katharine Moxham, spokesperson for GRiD explained: “Increased mobility has changed the way we work beyond recognition – with inevitable consequences for an employer’s relationship with their workforce. ††So, where once companies felt duty bound to provide financial support, leisure facilities and even housing for employees, today’s provision is likely to be much more streamlined.

“This break with paternalism is not necessarily a bad thing but we need to think carefully about how we ensure business continuity without this framework in place. Fostering self sufficiency is a noble aim but it’s no easy task to get consumers to take personal responsibility for their own protection needs. †What’s more, it’s not just employees who need protection. Long term absence can have a devastating impact on a business too and employers need to factor this into their plans.”

For more articles on group risk