Local News

"Family Friendly" Companies Appealing to Workers

Posted November 4, 1997 12:00 a.m. EST

— Many employers have found they can use the term "family friendly" to attract employees by offering ways to make life at work easier for parents of young children, or those caring for elderly parents.

Now, organizers of a conference in Chapel Hill hope to show companies the strong benefits of that concept.

Nigel Alston is not a parent, but he spoke at the conference about his company's attitude toward its employees who are.

Affordable day care is one issue Integon Insurance Company in Winston-Salem is coping with. Alston says the company joined with Smart Start to help many employees afford day care.

Debra Torrence came to learn new strategies for helping more employers in Durham become family friendly.

Torrence says employers don't have to sacrifice profits by implementing a family friendly policy. Flexible schedules and flexible leave policies, she says, don't cost much, and they help employers in the long run.

A 1990 census report shows half the work force is female and 80 percent of those with children in school now work. In addition, as many as 30 percent of employees in the US care for elderly relatives.

Reporter/Photographer:Rick Armstrong