We interviewed Alison Scutt, owner and director of Home Instead Senior Care – Lewes District and Uckfield, to find out why she believes that paying the Living Wage is important, especially in the care sector.
How long have you worked in the care sector?
It was through personal experience with my parents being unwell and requiring hospitalisation that found me in the position so many people find themselves in. The realisation that they may require care support was a daunting prospect and I quickly realised I wanted to be able to help and support older people and to give their families peace of mind. That’s why I opened my own Home Instead Senior Care office earlier this year; we provide the kind of care I would want for my loved ones.
What attracted you to work within the sector?
Not everyone has a large family or friends living close by to help them with elderly relatives. I am very much a people person and understand the importance of building relationships and trust, which are so important in delivering a quality service. I am driven to provide the kind of care I would want for my loved ones, knowing that we are making a difference, helping people live comfortably at home for as long as possible.
Tell me a bit about Home Instead Senior Care
Home Instead Senior Care specialises in providing care for older people in their own homes and is passionate about providing care to its clients which not only improves the quality of their lives but those of their families too.
We are passionate about providing the highest standard of person-centered care. Our ethos is simple – treat others as we would wish to be treated ourselves. In doing this we are improving our clients’ quality of life and helping them to remain in their own homes, leading an independent life.
The service we provide is extremely flexible and ranges from help a few hours a day to 24 hour care. Services can include personal care such as assistance with bathing, dressing and medications reminders; home help covering housework, shopping, meal preparation and household duties; and companionship services that can involve everything from escorting clients on visits or appointments to simple conversation and good company.
Why do people choose to work in the care sector?
People choose to work in the care sector because they want to make a difference to the lives or other people. People who work in the care sector are friendly, kind, compassionate people who enjoy spending time with people and building friendly but professional relationships.
Why do companies in this sector traditionally pay less than the Living Wage?
Often this can be due to who the company is providing their services to and whether they are working on fixed contracts and capped rates.
What needs to happen to make the Care sector and its delivery better?
People benefit the most when person centred care is well coordinated within health and social care settings. Integrated care and communication that bridges together all of the different elements of care that a person needs would really help to better deliver care for people.
How did you hear about the Brighton & Hove Living Wage Campaign? What made you decide to join?
I heard from a colleague and I just knew I wanted to be a part of improving wages for people
Did you face any barriers when signing up to the campaign?
No, I did not face any barriers when signing up to the campaign
How many staff do you have?
As a young business, we currently have 7 staff working at Home Instead, but we are looking to hire over 50 caregivers in the near future as our business continues to grow.
Being a fairly new business, do you feel that paying the Living Wage will be a challenge?
The work our caregivers do for the elderly people of our local community is amazing and inspirational. They are every day superheroes doing extraordinary work, and they deserve to be paid the Living Wage.
Or do you think that paying a Living Wage will benefit your business? How?
Paying our caregivers the Living Wage makes a statement from the start that our staff are respected for the amazing work they do. When you have happy staff, you have happy clients and that is a winning combination that I strive to achieve.
To get in touch with Alison at Home Instead Senior Care, visit the website or call 01273 437040.
Are you, or could you be, a Living Wage employer? Nearly 300 businesses have now signed up to the Brighton & Hove Living Wage Campaign, and it would be great if you could join them.
It is free to sign up here – http://www.livingwagebrighton.co.uk/sign-up/. If you have any questions, or would like to chat, please give us a call on 01273 719097 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.