The Daily Telegraph yesterday reported on an interview in The Spectator where The Rt Hon Dr Thérèse Coffey MP suggested to former aviation staff that working in the care sector may not be a “dream job” when there are an abundance of care workers who feel it is their dream job. Undermining recruitment and retention to the sector.
The question is, why wouldn’t an ex-aviation worker find caring and supporting the vulnerable in their community a dream job? There are countless examples of hugely hard-working people working for Caremark today who feel they are doing exactly that, providing much needed care to those who so desperately need it, in their communities. These Caring, kind, empathic people who have found their vocation in life, should not need to hear demeaning comments like these from an elected Member of Parliament, especially during the current crisis where they are needed more than ever.
This kind of use of language is entirely counterproductive to the recruitment of vital Care and Support Workers into the Social Care sector, ex-aviation staff have excellent communication skills, they are first aid trained and possess many other transferable skills they can use straight from aviation to social care. A person in Dr Coffey’s position should understand how this kind of ill-conceived language can cause so much damage to a sector who needs the right people and has positions available. A sector who are looking to recruit the right empathic, caring individuals that are needed to serve the vulnerable of communities far and wide, of which the much blighted aviation industry could be full of, but now may be put off even applying.
Caremark CEO Kevin Lewis had this to say the matter: “We demand a full and frank apology from Dr Coffey, not just for the Care and Support workers employed up and down the nation by our network of franchised offices, but the thousands of care workers employed throughout the sector who do feel they have their dream job, I feel this kind of ill-informed comment undermines the hard work we undertake to recruit and retain these amazing people, who are vital to help those in need and provide the high level of care we offer at Caremark”
He goes onto say: “There are countless individuals throughout our network who feel they have their dream job at Caremark and love what they are doing, including many Flight Attendants who have lost their jobs in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and are aghast at this derogatory comment about the profession they have chosen and love to do”.
One such example of an ex-cabin crew worker member who loves her care job is Abigail Byrne (pictured) who stopped taking to the skies and is now caring for people in their own homes.
Ms Byrne hopes eventually, she will once again take to the skies, but the Rt Hon Dr Thérèse Coffey MP may want to take note that she says she loves her new job.
These are amazing frontline keyworkers who take so much pressure off the NHS and support the vulnerable across the UK and earned much public respect by doing so. Dr Coffey may want to consider any further derogatory comments towards the social care profession, as perhaps the ex-aviation staff she refers to may find it a much more fulfilling and satisfying job than their previous role and may in fact find themselves in their “dream job” like so many care workers already do today.